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Theon design unveils its first Italian commission: ITA001.

  • Theon pushes air-cooled Porsches to new heights with latest bespoke 911 (964)
  • Fully restored and enhanced, built to precise specification for Italian customer
  • Lightweight carbon body, 400bhp, 4.0-litre air-cooled flat-six, six-speed manual ‘box, fully wet weight of just 1152kg
  • Gearbox, brakes and limited-slip differential from 993 RS, transformed dynamics, with five-stage adaptive TracTive dampers
  • Showcases Oxfordshire-based Theon’s OEM-grade design and engineering expertise

Theon Design has revealed the latest bespoke Porsche 911 (964) based commission to emerge from its Oxfordshire workshops: ITA001. Created for its first Italian customer, a discerning collector from Milan, ITA001 is transformed with a featherweight all-carbon body, semi-active suspension and a snarling, 4.0-litre naturally aspirated flat-six.

ITA001 is the realisation of a client’s Porsche 911 fantasy. It is a fully-restored and enhanced machine that – as with all Theon Design commissions – combines OEM+ design and engineering know-how, with cutting-edge technology and manufacturing techniques. These elements are fused with obsessive attention to detail and total purity of purpose to deliver the ultimate air-cooled Porsche 911 driving experience.

“At Theon Design, we’re all obsessive about Porsche. We enhance these wonderful machines in a considered way, ensuring our work is in keeping with the brand’s ethos,” explains Theon Co-Founder Adam Hawley. “We use the word ‘enhance’ deliberately, going to great lengths to make sure that the unique air-cooled Porsche feel is preserved; just distilled to make the driving experience all that more intoxicating. Our mission is to elevate the air-cooled 911 to all-new levels of performance and dynamic ability – while ensuring the car retains that endlessly beguiling Porsche DNA.”

The ultimate celebration of air-cooled perfection

ITA001 again takes the Porsche 911 (964) as its base, in this case a Carrera 4 Coupe. The donor car was stripped back to bare metal before being meticulously restored. The body is all carbon, with each panel digitised and modelled in 3D design software to ensure a perfect fit. Carbon body panels add stiffness and shed weight; while beautifully trimmed and appointed, ITA001 tips the scales at just 1152kg with all fluids onboard.

Theon Design’s signature attention to detail permeates every level of the car; a lighter, aerospace grade wiring loom is carefully threaded through the strengthened body shell, while modern dual
air-conditioning compressors and an all-new electric-power steering pump are relocated to the front of the car, nestled low-down for optimised weight distribution.

The same care has been lavished on the mighty air-cooled 4.0-litre engine – a flat-six work of art producing 400bhp at 7500rpm, and 315lb/ft at 6250rpm. The addition of a drive-by-wire throttle enables improved, razor-sharp response. The motor also features independent throttle bodies, developed in partnership with British specialists Jenvey – just one of the leading suppliers Theon Design is ideally placed to collaborate with, from its base in the heart of the country’s famed ‘Motorsport Valley’.

Elsewhere, ITA001 also sports a new, high-performance plenum, based on the unit fitted to the 997 GT3, while a dual mass-flywheel ensures the flat-six delivers superb response while remaining civil in normal driving. ITA001’s howling motor breathes through a switchable, fully ceramic coated exhaust, sending power to the rear wheels via an original Porsche 993 RS six-speed gearbox – one of just 1104 units built. The six-speed ‘box delivers distinctly Porsche shifts, rendered even more immediate and direct thanks to an RS gear shifter.

The Porsche Motorsport theme continues with a full 993 RS brake setup – giving ITA001 superb pedal feel and response, along with consistent, fade-free stopping power. A 993 RS limited-slip differential completes the package, working in harmony with the carefully sourced ‘box to ensure signature Porsche traction and control.

ITA001 is infused with sharp-edged responsiveness and performance, all added in a typically Theon way: always considered and in keeping with the Porsche ethos.

Transformed dynamics

Theon Design has also applied its customary laser-focused approach to ensure that ITA001 handles with modern sophistication. There’s transformed breadth of dynamic ability thanks to a switchable, five-stage TracTive Active Controlled Electronics (ACE) damping system –carefully calibrated over countless test miles to perform flawlessly in a wide range of driving environments.

The famous Porsche 911 useability is taken to new heights. Whether speeding along a sweeping stretch of autostrada, or hammering up a pockmarked Tuscan hillside road, ITA001 is entirely at home. A hydraulic nose-lift system also ensures that speed bumps and steep driveways present no issues, either.

Perfectly formed inside and out

From an exterior design perspective, Hawley and the team again obsess over every detail to ensure each commission has a beautifully balanced, perfectly resolved Porsche 911 stance – one that’s both pretty and purposeful.

ITA001’s all-carbon body is finished in the classic Porsche colour of Schwartz Black, a ‘70s hue, offset by understated grey ‘Ghost’ stripes, with a matching PORSCHE script running along the sills.
The rich paintwork is perfectly complemented by 18” Fuchs wheels, which feature champagne coloured ‘petals’ and outer rims – sitting perfectly in the carefully sculpted arches. Satin carbon fibre trim details complete the car’s air of sophisticated menace.

Inside Theon Design’s total commitment to bespoke, handcrafted quality is also immediately apparent. ITA001 is specified with fast road touring in mind, with supportive Recaro ‘touring’ seats trimmed in sumptuous, soft tobacco Bridle leather. The exterior’s satin carbon is mirrored inside, for a modern, motorsport edge. ITA001 is also fitted with custom rear touring seats – drawing inspiration from the Porsche 928 rear buckets. Again, Theon Design has creatively enhanced, whilst remaining resolutely ‘Porsche’ in its approach.

Modern creature comforts are also added: a powerful Focal six speaker stereo is thoughtfully integrated under the front passenger seat, offering supreme audio performance should the occupants ever tire of the sonorous flat-six. The system is easily controlled via Bluetooth from a smartphone, which simply slots into a magnetic wireless charging slot on the woven leather dash – preserving the interior’s clean, timeless look.

“We’re delighted to reveal ITA001 to the world,” continues Adam Hawley, Theon Design Co-Founder. “It retains the air-cooled enthralling 911’s charm, but blends it with modern, focused performance and dynamic ability; it’s a classic 911 with an addictive dose of modern GT3 thrown in.

“We’ve applied Theon Design’s signature blend of cutting-edge automotive technology, OEM grade design and manufacturing techniques, along with British hand-crafted quality – all fused together by a team obsessed with achieving air-cooled Porsche perfection. The results speak for themselves; we’ve nailed the customer’s brief and delivered a classily stylish, almost understated 911 – with thrilling, modern performance that’s anything but.”

Prices for Theon Design commissions start at £380,000. Each car is a totally unique collaboration with the customer and takes 18 months to build. Price excludes donor car, shipping and local taxes.

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