Porsche 911-based Safari builds have hugely grown in popularity over the last decade, going from what was once seen as sacrilegious to becoming a widely-accepted genre amongst aficionados of the Stuttgart brand. And while we’re now seeing new Porsche Safari builds on a near-monthly basis, very few have been treated to as extensive of a transformation as the 964-based Baja Prototype #1 from Russell Built Fabrication — a genuinely world-class Safari project that’s just hit the online auction block.
Engineered from the ground up with the aim of being “the most capable purpose-built luxury off-road 911 possible,” this 911 Safari build has been heavily upgraded inside and out in just about every possible area. Weighing just a tad under 2,800lbs — roughly 400lbs less than the stock donor — the project is built around a clean 964 Carrera 4 Cabriolet chassis that’s been modified and reinforced. The first of a limited series of numbered bespoke luxury Safari 911 builds from Russell Built Fabrication, the 964 — which is now 3” longer than the Carrera 4 stocker and 15” wider — has been cloaked in custom composite panels with ultra-flared and vented wheel wells, lightweight doors, a hood-mounted LED light-pod with a carbon fiber housing, and a McLaren F1-style central roof-mounted intake scoop crafted from carbon fiber. The prototype build’s suspension system has been entirely custom-fabricated out of 7075-grade alloy and 4130 Chromoly steel and affords a foot of travel up front and 13” in the rear.
Clad in Olive Green leather and black Alcantara, the interior’s transformation is equally involved, receiving an integrated 4130 Chromoly roll-cage, a carbon fiber trim package, carbon fiber Sparco bucket seats, a Tilton Racing pedal assembly, a three-spoke Sparco steering wheel with custom switchgear panels, a rear seat delete storage box, and a custom lightweight dashboard housing a digital race display. Under its modified rear decklid, this Baja build packs a flat-six engine that was prepared specifically for this project by Oregon’s Rothsport Road & Race, which has tuned the 3.8-liter mill to put down 360hp and 310ft-lbs of torque. Since Rothsport R&R’s rebuild, this car’s engine has also only seen 5,200 miles put on it, though servicing has been performed every 500 miles, as well.
Located in Los Angeles, California, Russell Built Fabrication’s 1991 Porsche 964-based Baja Prototype #1 build is currently being auctioned off through Collecting Cars where, as of the time of writing, bidding has reached just over $150,000 with a full week remaining on the sale.