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997.1 3.6 v 3.8 reliability.

Kev.K

Monza
Joined
31 Jan 2013
Messages
184
I went to view a M3 today as it seemed a bargain for the spec (frozen paint, dct, individual sound etc).

To turned out to be a bit of a dog, peppered with stone chips and some idiot had attempted to polish the bonnet. It seems most m3's are abused ex company/lease cars.

I mentioned to the dealer that I was considering a 997, but wanted a gen 2 due to the engine problems of the gen1.

He told me that it is the 3.8 that is prone to problems, not the 3.6.

He said the 3.6 was less prone to fail as it has less torque and thicker cylinder walls, and is less likely to have IMS issues?

Is this true?

I normally take everything dealers say with a pinch of salt, but he seemed clued up.
 
Kev.K said:
He told me that it is the 3.8 that is prone to problems, not the 3.6.

Not really, there were more 3.8's sold in the UK by a considerable margin, as a result the volume of 3.8 issues is higher but only as a result of more cars in circulation. There is no difference between the 3.8 and 3.6, just get the best car you can afford whether Gen 1 or Gen 2 and you'll be fine.
 
I would say he is right that the 3.6 has less issues than the 3.8, but that may be because they might have sold less of them - we see more 3.8's for rebuild and bore scoring should theoretically be less prone although I would not expect IMS issues with either of the later models.

The incidences of failures are anyway still small in proportion but never the less very expensive if you have to pay for a fix.

Great cars though and there are Porsche and independent warranties and maintenance plans available that will protect you if they are reliable - which you should research and judge for yourself.

Baz
 
I would agree: it has less torque, less heat, thicker cylinder walls and wrt the IMS, it's overriding characteristic: it isn't bought by road-racers.

(I was assuming the carefully considered comments from the salesman were based on pro-rata failure statistics)
 
I've heard that recommended practice is to peek inside every cylinder of a gen 1 997 for evidence of bore-scoring (3.6 and 3.8) as part of the pre-purchase inspection. Is that the norm now, or is my expert witness over cautious?
 
To be honest, only if you notice sooting or oil burning or suspect or know of rev range excursions.

But you can never be too careful.
 
I checked out a c4s with pretty evenly coloured tailpipes when I was looking for a car.We did a boroscope check and 5 and 6 were bollocksed..
Without a doubt I would check internally any M96 or M97 engined car that I was looking to buy. :evil:
 
Thanks for the replies.

People are really helpful on here, unlike some other forums I've been on.

I'm currently struggling to decide between skinning myself for a gen2 pdk, or buying a low mile, clean gen1 manual.

A 3.6 would feel special to me, as it would be my first 911. I was also thinking I might get a good deal as most buyers want the 3.8.

On the other hand I think early gen2 cars will hold their value really well, because of all the engine problems associated with the 996 and 997.1.

Baz @ hartech is local to me so at least I know I've got a good local independent garage.
 
Does anyone know what it costs to have a Porsche specialist pop out the plugs and check for scoring in a Gen 1? Also, is this something a seller is likely to object to being done? I think that if I were after a 997.1 I would want to be a 100% sure the car i was buying was not one of the problem few.

tim
 
tim993 said:
Does anyone know what it costs to have a Porsche specialist pop out the plugs and check for scoring in a Gen 1? Also, is this something a seller is likely to object to being done? I think that if I were after a 997.1 I would want to be a 100% sure the car i was buying was not one of the problem few.

tim
Why don't you PM Baz?
 

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