As a rip-roaring throwback to the golden era of rally Porsches, the 2023 Porsche 911 Dakar ought to also look the part. That's why Porsche is offering the option of a classic, Rothmans livery-inspired graphics package that'll pay tribute to one of the cars that built the brand's motorsport legend.
The 911 Dakar will be a limited-run car of just 2,500 units, which have been modified to be the most versatile 911s ever sold. A two-inch lift, all-terrain tires, and special driving modes combine to make them capable of taking on tracks and trails alike—and the optional roof tent means they can really rough it. The Rallye Design Package, then, serves as icing on the cake, with a livery based on the groundbreaking all-wheel-drive 911 that won the 1984 Dakar Rally overall for Porsche.
The design is modeled after that famous Porsche, with two-tone paint split between white and Gentian Blue Metallic. (Porsche nerds will note this is the first time Stuttgart has paired two-tone paint with a livery from the factory.) White wheels, black-painted brake calipers, and a blue-accented interior also make an appearance. Though the Rothmans brand ceased to exist in 1999, being absorbed into British American Tobacco, Porsche isn't using its name on the side. Where the historic race cars read Rothmans, the 911 Dakar will read "Roughroads," an important obfuscation of the car's link to a now-banned tobacco sponsorship. Being inspired by a racing livery, Porsche also allows customers to designate a number between 1 and 999 to stick on the side of their cars.
These graphics are sure to be popular with nostalgic buyers that miss the days before motorsport shunned tobacco money, though the 911 Dakar will still sell itself by its own merits. Its 3.0-liter, twin-turbo flat-six generates 473 horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque, which combine with an eight-speed PDK automatic and all-wheel drive to reach 60 mph from nil in 3.2 seconds. It can parade around at its lifted ride height at speeds of up to 105 mph, and top out at 150 (that's the limit of those all-terrain tires).
In all, it's an appropriate tribute to the Dakar cars that helped Porsche broaden its racing legacy—never mind the rest of the Rothmans cars that played their own roles, too.
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