Porsche 968

Porsche and Kevin Dixon 3 lr

Kevin Dixon with his cherished Porsche 968

By Tim Saunders

In 1999 Kevin Dixon bought a brand new Porsche 968 convertible for £75,000. It’s now worth £30,000, which is not bad depreciation for such a car, he says.
“I traded in my previous one and got £30,000 which went some way towards my new car,” recalls Kevin, who used to run his own advertising agency but now concentrates on landscape painting.
“The 968 was a new model at that time and I had it on order for 12 months; it was the first model to feature a water-cooled engine. It’s not as thrilling as the earlier air cooled ones but has only done 30,000 miles as I don’t do any business travelling now.
“In the ‘80s a Porsche used to be a really good investment because you’d get back what you paid when it came to trading it in simply because demand outstripped supply. A main dealer was like belonging to a club. Once you got in they looked after you and the used market was good. As was the case with many a Porsche owner my first Porsche was a used example and I then ordered a new one. Once you were in the system you then stayed in it. If you tried selling privately or elsewhere the main dealer would remove you. Things are different now.”
After a string of MGs, TRs and a Stag, Kevin bought his first 911 in 1982 and has driven one ever since. “I had an Audi Quattro, which had superb handling, many times better than early Porsches but not as quick. But I always wanted a Porsche. It’s an affordable supercar you can drive all the time unlike a Ferrari. I lost my first one several times resulting in the car going sideways down a main road, I have spun round 360 degrees but I have never crashed. With my current 968 I have lost it twice as a result of giving it welly. But this model is fitted with traction control so a flick of a switch very quickly puts it back on the straight; a huge relief when you think you are going to go straight through a fence.
“My 968 costs £320 a year for me to insure fully comprehensive with protected no claims bonus. It was £1,000 a year when I first bought it. I insure it alongside my Jeep, which costs a further £190 a year. My wife’s boring Mercedes 320SL is insured separately. The Merc is crammed with modern switches but the Porsche isn’t cluttered at all. It’s all about the revs and the speedometer in the Porsche whereas in the Merc I put my hand on the steering wheel and can’t even see the speedo.
“I love the styling. The early ones look a little dated but the later ones don’t. Mine has teardrop headlights whereas the new version doesn’t but that’s really the only visual difference to the man in the street and these days I couldn’t justify spending such a huge sum of money on a new car.
“When I bought it I parked up and was putting the roof down when a photographer approached me and asked whether he could sit a lottery winner in the back to take a photo of her with her £4m cheque. I did this and was interviewed for local television. They asked me whether I was a lottery winner to which I replied ‘my hard work has enabled me to make this purchase’.
“I have recently replaced the roof and no longer use a main dealer for servicing or repairs because they are so expensive. There’s an excellent local independent specialist that works on racing Porsches and they charge me a lot less than a main dealer would. For instance, they replaced the roof which had a plastic window in it with a new one which has a glass one in it for £1,500 against the main dealer price of £2,500. I needed a cam valve replacing; the main dealer was also going to charge around £2,500 for this because they said the part was £850 and it would require 10 hours labour. The independent specialist charged me £103 for the part and £200 labour.”

Facts at a glance:
 
Used price: £30,000
New price: £75,000
 
Top speed: 156mph
0-60mph: 4.9secs
Power: 305bhp
Economy: 20mpg
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