Karmann Ghia with a Porsche 993 Engine

Karmann Ghia with a Porsche 993 flat-six

While doing research I came across an old Jalopnik article about Bader Racing putting a Porsche 993 engine in a VW Karmann Ghia. The engine has a few upgrades giving the car around 321 horsepower. To handle the extra power, they stiffened the chassis with a roll cage. Jalopnik reports the conversion cost $260,000 and took about 18 months.

Karmann Ghia with a Porsche 993 flat-six

Karmann Ghia with a Porsche 993 flat-six

Karmann Ghia with a Porsche 993 flat-six

Karmann Ghia with a Porsche 993 flat-six

Karmann Ghia with a Porsche 993 flat-six

Karmann Ghia with a Porsche 993 flat-six

Karmann Ghia with a Porsche 993 flat-six

Source: Bader Racing via Jalopnik

27 thoughts on “Karmann Ghia with a Porsche 993 Engine”

  1. Why not merely swap out-swap back in an old VW Karmann Ghia body (1960-70 vintage) onto a Porsche Carrera engine/frame chassis?

    This is what I would like to attempt. Can it be done more simply that way and perhaps less expensive than this ground-up restortaion swap?

  2. $260,000!?!? How? Is that roll cage titanium? A 993 and the ghia together didn’t cost that much, if you’d bought the cars whole. There is absolutely no way it could possibly cost this much. If he paid this much, he got completely screwed. And Eighteen months? For what? It wouldn’t take that long to machine an engine from billet.

  3. I agree $260,000 is crazy. You can fit a Subaru EJ25 back in the rear, hook it up to a Porsche/Audi 5 speed with adapter plate order a brain with 9 wire harness from Outfront Motor sports, turbo it and have 330 HP. I’ll be doing it on my 1962 Ghia and the conversion will run alittle over $5,000.
    I already did this to my sand rail although I did not turbo it. I still have approximately 200 HP. The dimensions of the EJ25 are within 1/2 inch all the way arouind as a stock VW engine, and the weight difference is approx 50 LBS more than the VW.

    1. If and when you finish the Porsche motor in Karmann-Ghia conversion, post it up. It’s easy to just SAY what YOU could do, but don’t mouth- off until you’ve done it.
      You may be surprised at all the hidden costs in making the vehicle street-legal.

  4. Hey Nick, I am interested in knowing more about the conversion you are going to be doing. Could we exchange emails? Mine is: azilluminat at yahoo.com


  5. Nick-
    Do you have a link or more information on you EJ25 swap? I have a ’71 i’m looking to enhance and your project sounds like a winner, especially in power to money ratio. Email is ronin425 at comcast.net

  6. Hey Nick i would like to have more information on your conversion like what model Subaru EJ25 your are planing on using, what transmission size, and places to to purchase said engine and transmission please e-mail me at shamrock3454@hotmail.com

  7. Nick, I am trying to buy a Ghia and read what you wrote. Is it really that easy to do? I am not a mechanic but am interested in doing this. I really want to see your car when it is complete. Thank you for also puuting down that it doesn’t cost alot too. Please post a picture whae you are done.

  8. Nick, I have a 69 ghia that I am in the process of modifying…it never occurred to me to put a subaru boxer in the back. If you have any more details on this kind of conversion I would be eager to know more. Hit me back at jfreeridr@gmail.com.

  9. The $260,000 price tag is crazy nuts, but possible if done at a Porsche dealership at full shop rates, with a new crate engine, trans, and other factory parts.
    Done at a good independent garage, $7500 plus parts. Parts are potentially nearly free if you really look hard and are not fussy about where they come from.

    1. If you can get hold of a good 993 engine and transaxle for enarly nothing or almost nothing, you must not be fussy about where they came from. Can anyone supply a good one for under $10,000?

  10. charlie noseworthy

    nice conversion to expensive for the engine refit but liked what you did with the rest of the car
    was wonderin about wheels and ties and how hey were mounted
    did you alter the suspension?
    again nice work

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