Pristine Classic

Porsche Centre Downtown Toronto Partners With 427 Auto Collision In A Classic Restoration Competition

LAST YEAR Porsche Centre Downtown Toronto (PCDT, formerly known as Downtown Porsche) partnered with 427 Auto Collision to restore a 1996 911 Carrera 4S and enter it into Porsche Canada’s inaugural Classic Restoration Competition. The result, to say the very least, is absolutely stunning, as evidenced by the photos on these pages!

PCDT was one of 12 Porsche Centres that participated in the competition across Canada. The winners were announced last autumn at the Destination Porsche event in Mont Tremblant. Overall, PCDT won the marketing award at the inaugural Porsche Cars Canada Classic Restoration Competition.

The background story of this vehicle is pretty interesting. Originally purchased new from Downtown Fine Cars on Avenue Road (prior to the dealership’s name change to Downtown Porsche and very recently Porsche Centre Downtown Toronto) on Feb. 29, 1996, the C4S was serviced by Downtown Porsche until being purchased back from the original owner a few years ago. Downtown Porsche chose this vehicle as its project car due to its extensive history with them and, as well, for it being the ideal poster car for Porsche, especially finished in the highly coveted Arena Red.

Although this is one of the best examples of a Porsche classic to many, we knew that a complete engine rebuild and body reconditioning was required in order to bring this diamond in the rough back to its former glory. This vehicle is also a fine example that a Porsche sports car can be driven through every Canadian winter.

427 Auto Collision met very stringent standards to become a Porsche Certified Collision Centre in 2013 and remains just one of five in all of Ontario. Although the company has repaired thousands of Porsche vehicles since 2013, they do not come across models like this 1996 911 Carrera 4S very often.

There was a great deal of rust and related wear and tear on the vehicle as it was a daily driver since it was purchased new, requiring some intricate metal work in the restoration process. This portion of the job was completed by hand to ensure that the original vehicle structure was not compromised. Perfecting the finish was another challenge because the entire car had to be repainted, and it was important to match the gorgeous original 24-year-old colour exactly and flawlessly.

A complete engine rebuild was executed by skilled technicians at PCDT in addition to the fitting of new brakes with reconditioned calipers, rotors and brake lines, and a new suspension system including a fresh set of coil-overs.

Fortunately the head painter at 427 Auto Collision has an in-depth colour library, therefore, he was able to use his custom colour formulation experience to achieve the perfect match. Only a seasoned technician can work with such a complex finish using more than three different pearl tones and a very high transparency in the process.

In terms of the technical work performed, a complete engine rebuild was executed by skilled technicians at PCDT in addition to the fitting of new brakes with reconditioned calipers, rotors and brake lines, and a new suspension system including a fresh set of coil-overs. They also reconditioned the OEM wheels and replaced the centre caps; replaced all exterior lighting, door jamb and information stickers, the door jamb seals and sunroof seals; replaced and repaired rear-spoiler drive components plus the third brake light. Inside the cabin, the audio head unit was upgraded to a Porsche Classic stereo, the shift knob and floormats refreshed with new pieces, and the inoperative steering wheel horn was replaced and repaired too.

It was great to see the teamwork dynamic between 427 Auto Collision and the build crew at Porsche Centre Downtown Toronto, two skilled entities come together on this restoration project. The team at PCDT was led by Adrian Vallejo (team captain) and the team members included Nick Harrison (automotive service technician), Hovig Sarkisian (gold master technician), Brian Ramoutar (classic car technician), Darryl McLennon (assistant parts manager) and Derek Chen (marketing manager). Both companies couldn’t have asked for a better partner in this competition and both look forward to taking on the challenge again together in 2020.

A special thanks also goes out to Caz Derkowski, CEO of Empire Media Worx, who worked with Derek Chen to produce the high-quality mini video series that aired on PCDT’s social media channels, showcasing 427 Auto Collision and PCDT’s facilities respectively, their technical expertise, and highlights from the restoration process over a six-week period.

Check out the videos on YouTube, simply search “1996 911 Carrera 4S restoration.” Here’s episode #1…

Porsche Centre Downtown Toronto will host a grand reopening of its newly renovated facility in early 2020, soon, so be on the lookout for an announcement, in addition to more PCA UCR events.

427 Auto Collision will host the annual 2020 Shift Into Spring Open House for PCA UCR on Sunday, April 19 — hope to see you there! </>

Story by Jessica D’Alessandro, 427 Auto Collision Public Relations And Marketing Coordinator, and Derek Chen, Porsche Centre Downtown Toronto Marketing Manager | Photos by Porsche Centre Downtown Toronto and Empire Media Worx

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