Today’s special – fried eggs. Happy Birthday, Porsche 996!

Twenty years today, the Porsche 996 first hatched, seeing the bright lights of the world for the first time. Rebuffed by Porsche purists, the first water-cooled 911 with its ‘fried egg’ headlights became a bestseller. Now, 20 years on, it’s becoming a true collectors’ car…

The 966 is a recent example in Porsche’s history that proves that the most controversial models are often the most financially successful. Designed by Design Chief Harm Lagaay in Zuffenhausen between 1997 and 2006, the 996 was built under enormous cost pressures and over 175,000 examples were sold. This model was the first to break from the classic 911 body, with the popular round headlights being replaced by an amorphous, aesthetically questionable lighting system and the engine being cooled by water instead of air. Even if the 996 doesn’t reach the top prices of the timeless 993, the “ugly duckling” will always have a proper fan base. In the Classic Driver Market, numerous Porsche 996s can be found for sale, and alternatively, our 10 favourites can be found below.

10 timeless Porsche 996s in honour of its 20th birthday