1971 914 remained relatively unchanged from its introductory 1970 model
year. Engine options remained the same – none – with the 1.7
powering the four cylinder version of our favorite Porsche and the 2.0
liter providing the motivation in the 914-6.
While production of the four cylinder cars increased from 13,312 in 1970
to 16,231 in 1971, the 914-6 production dropped from 2,668 in ’70
to just 443 for the 1971 model year. For the “Six”, the handwriting
was on the wall. Now in its second year of production, it was time to
roll out the options in an effort to attract new buyers and lure existing
owners into “trading up”.
While the base ’70 914
four cylinder model was available only with very basic steel wheels and
simple chrome VW hubcaps without the stamped VW logo in the center, the
1971 model year offered Pedrini alloys as well as an optional painted
steel wheel. Both wheel choices were 5 1⁄2” by 15”.
Exterior color choices were expanded for both the four and the six cylinder
models – not by much, but by adding one additional color choice
and renaming and tweaking the shades of several of the previous colors.
The 1971 914 interior choices remained the same with the exception of
a tan carpet option being added. Otherwise, seats were still available
in your choice of either Brown, Tan, or Black vinyl on the fours and the
same three color choices in leather for the Sixes. Hounds Tooth patterned
cloth seat inserts were dropped for the 1971 model year.
What did change for the 914 in 1971 was the public realization that it
made a quite capable race car. The 914 was entered in major race events
across Europe and North America. The “Race on Sunday, Sell Cars
on Monday” theory held true and the positive buzz of participation
in major races helped boost sales - at least for the four cylinder models.
While the 914s that were entered in major races didn't win often, just
showing up and making an effort gave notice that Porsche was serious about
the competition aspects of the car.
All in all, 1971 was a good
year for the 914. But, better days were ahead.