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Suzuki’s new Swift hatch and sedan in SA

Suzuki kicks off its new model assault with an all new Swift hatchback and standalone sedan called the Dzire.

Porsche 944 roadster rebirth?

2010-01-25 07:46

Austin-Healey 3000 meets Morgan 8 contemporary styling treatment works very, very well in our opinion.

Vehicle Specs
Manufacturer Heynsdyk
Model 2500F
Engine 2.5 four-cylinder turbo
Power 183kW
Torque 350Nm
Transmission Five-speed manual
Zero To Hundred 6 sec
Top Speed 250km/h
Weight 900kg
Porsche’s 944. It was front-engined. It had in-line four-cylinder power. How 911 owners hated it.

In the fullness of time though, it turned out to be a great little entry-level performance car, especially due to its front-engine, transaxle layout – which equated to near perfect 50/50 static weight distribution.

Now, nearly two decades after the last 944s were built, you can revitalise them with a very interesting styling package from Europe’s lowlands…

Roadster proportions sit very comfortably on the 944 underpinnings. Wheels range from 15- to 19-inches in size.

A daring Dutch idea

In an engineering match-up which could only be conceptualised and executed by the Dutch, Eindhoven-based Heynsdyk has fashioned a rather striking resurfacing treatment for the Porsche 944.

They call it the Heynsdyk 2500F. If you are in the frame of mind to turn your ageing 944 into a jealousy-inducing contemporary roadster of sorts, the 2500F it might be, well, perfect for your needs.

Originally penned back in 2006 by RJ Heijnsijk as an outlandish design solution based on 944 mechanicals, the 2500F melts away excess mass and adds a surfeit of styling presence to any run-of-the-mill 944.

The bodywork is manipulated into its arresting shape from bespoke polymers and features tubular frame support for crash impact strengthening.

Featuring elaborately sculptured aft front-axle aero cut-outs, individual roll-over hoop supports and a stylised rump, the 2500F does not lack for styling presence in any way imaginable.

Rear-three quarter view is particularly fetching. Silhouetted figure on the right must be one very happy former 944 owner...
Porsche power, Lotus genes?

Beyond the aesthetic merits, RJ Heijnsijk’s design also trims mass by 300kg from a stock 944 and lowers the centre of gravity by 15%. This means the 2500F factors to around 900kg of very neatly balanced out roadster.

Mechanically the 2500F retains the 944’s front-engine, transaxle rear-wheel drive layout. Engine options shadow the original 944 line-up too (2.5 up to 3l), with various states of tune available - from 120kW naturally aspirated 2.5s to a rather quick 183kW Turbo S version.

All 2500Fs drive through a five-speed manual transmission. In the Turbo S version you should see 0-100km/h up in a shade under six seconds from a standing start, on your way to the governed 250km/h top speed.

Keeping the 2500F’s behaviour in check are 290mm ventilated rotors at all four wheel corners (with ABS modulated hydraulics). Cornering forces are kept in check courtesy of 944 sourced wheel attachments (double-wishbones up front, independent torsion beam aft), which should ensure crisp handling responses.

All things considered we think the 2500F conversion is a rather clever way to inject some vitality your 944 ownership experience.

As a DIY kit you can have the boxes delivered for €14 750, or alternatively (for people who actually have a social life) you can buy one (944 chassis included) ready to run for €36 995.


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