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Porsche Varrera.jpg
Porsche Varrera
Porsche
aka Project EA226
Production 1988 - one-off prototype
Class Sports Luxury
Body Style Five-door MPV
Length c. 4800 mm
Width c. 1850 mm
Height c. 2000 mm
Wheelbase c. 2500 mm
Weight c. 1600kg
Transmission Five-speed manual or automatic
Engine 3.6-4.2 litre flat-six
Power c. 280bhp
Similar Volkswagen Sharan
Ford Galaxy
Mercedes G-Wagen
Designer Harm Lagaay

In 1988, Porsche was on a concept-car roll - the Porsche 969, Porsche 989, Porsche Panamericana and the next-generation 911 were all in the pipeline, and Porsche, with its bank account brimming with bucks, embarked upon another project - the Porsche Varrera. The Varrera was to be an MPV, or Minivan, based upon the Volkswagen Sharan chassis, and powered by the ubiquitous flat-six engine from the 911.

The Thirty-Year Project

Porsche initially embarked upon such a project in the Sixties, under the codename EA226, as the Stuttgart concern hankered after a vehicle with the performance of a 911, but the storage space of a van. Needless to say, EA226 was cancelled, but Porsche felt that it was necessary to produce such a vehicle for the next decade. Working closely with VW, the Varrera would sit upon a highly modified Sharan chassis, but would feature the flat-six and gearbox from the 911. The Varrera was also to use very similar bodywork to the Sharan, with different lights and bumpers to make it look more 'Porsche'. Harm Lagaay was again used to create the bodywork modifications, and the interior would also be appreciably different from the VW - projected designs featured a unique dashboard, the traditional Eighties Porsche steering wheel and leather trimmed, wide-bolstered seats. A proper stereo and full electric system would compliment the interior. It was never confirmed whether the Varrera would use the seven-seat layout of the Sharan.

The prototype was photographed in a light gold metallic, and fitted with Cup alloys. The project was terminated (some say that this project was the first to be axed in the late 1988/early 1989 prototype cull, which saw the Panamericana, 989 and 969 scrapped) but the spirit lives on today in the Porsche Cayenne. To all accounts, the prototype was destroyed.


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