Petrolicious Video Explains Why the Original Porsche 718 Was an Icon

Petrolicious Video Explains Why the Original Porsche 718 Was an Icon 1 photo
Photo: Screenshot from YouTube
We've recently discovered that Porsche merged the Cayman and Boxster series into one model, the 718. That's huge when you consider the industry is moving towards having more models, not fewer. Of course, everybody knows that the 718 series is a throwback to a historic car from several decades ago, but very few people know what it stands for.
With a lot of help from Porsche, the guys at Petrolicious have put together one of their best videos yet. It features the 718 race car, a former Porsche works driver by the name of Derek Bell and the Targa Florio course in Italy.

This is a thinly disguised advertorial, but as long as we can have all that glorious camerawork, we're not going to complain. The car we are dealing with is the Targa Florio-winning 718 RS 60. It's a museum piece with a 1.6-liter naturally aspirated and an air-cooled engine producing about half what the modern 718 Boxster S gets from its 2.5-liter turbo.

Although he is old, Bell's career happened much later during Porsche's glorious 70's Le Mans era. Nowadays, he is a brand ambassador for Bentley and was involved shortly in the development and marketing of the Bentayga SUV.

“I had a very special feeling that I can’t really put into words, but it was almost choking me when I put it into 1st gear and driving it up the road, and that feel - it’s actually the feeling of freedom,” Bell says, “…because I was on my own, on this amazing course, nobody around, and I was driving through corners that the greats had actually gone ’round those corners.”

If you think racing at the Nurburgring is difficult, consider that Targa Florio has over 800 corners, dozens of hairpin turns, and danger everywhere else. This tight road in Sicily is in much better condition now than it was when Porsche raced here.

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About the author: Mihnea Radu
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Mihnea's favorite cars have already been built, the so-called modern classics from the '80s and '90s. He also loves local car culture from all over the world, so don't be surprised to see him getting excited about weird Japanese imports, low-rider VWs out of Germany, replicas from Russia or LS swaps down in Florida.
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