A Scottish Canadian from Toronto loves his Porsche 930 so much he’s driven it to the moon three times covering more than a million kilometres along the way.
Bill does literally love his German four-wheeled soulmate ‘to the moon and back’ and continues to embrace all the years, adventures, heartaches and enjoyment his first Porsche 911 based 930 has to offer.
Tenacious lanky MacEachern was instantly smitten following his first test drive in a Porsche 1970 red 911 T…
“I grew up with American muscle cars, in my younger days I had an Oldsmobile 4-4-2. It was fine for drive-ins and stoplight drags but handled like a milk truck. I couldn’t believe how agile, well constructed, and poised the car was. And comfortable, too, despite the compact dimensions and impressive performance.”
That single experience marked MacEachern for life with the purchase of a silver 911 as a company car for his rapidly growing carpet-cleaning business. Shortly thereafter he had another revelation. “In 1972 I saw a Porsche 917/10 for the first time at a Can-Am race. Turbocharging was the new way to go but it seemed like rocket science at the time.”
When a few years later Porsche offered the 911-based 930 Turbo street machine for sale in Canada, MacEachern decided he just had to have one. The dealer initially tried to dissuade him, explaining in no uncertain terms the 930 was powerful and asked whether he might be happier with another model. Not a chance. MacEachern had fallen in love. Forever.
Porsche 930 Timeline
0 kilometres / Energy crisis
Gasoline is in short supply in 1973. Lines form at service stations. While some car owners toy with the thought of switching to smaller models, MacEachern sticks to his decision, which he puts into action in the fall of 1975: he orders the 911 Turbo—in deep Midnight Blue with a cork leather interior, a sport driver’s seat, and a limited-slip differential. Perhaps there might never be another chance, he thinks, to buy a genuine, ultra-high-performance sports car.
23 kilometres / Initial shock
The car is flown in from Germany in May of 1976. Its serial number marks it as the 350th 930 built. MacEachern spots the Porsche for the first time through a chain-link fence at the airport. His heart sinks: “It looked like the wrong colour.” But no, there hadn’t been a mistake with the order. “The car was just covered with a layer of dust.” When the traces of the long journey are washed away, he starts to drive. And continues to do so to this day.
4,312 kilometres / Marriage
Bill MacEachern marries his sweetheart Lyse.
6,245 kilometres / Racing fever
“My first major road trip took me across Ontario and Quebec to a Trans-Am race in Trois Rivières,” MacEachern recalls. It turns out to be a fantastic weekend for a diehard Porsche enthusiast. George Follmer wins in a Porsche 934, followed by Al Holbert in the same model. MacEachern is fascinated. After the trip, he seeks out numerous racetracks in North America. Over the following decades, he and his Porsche cover hundreds of thousands of kilometres on countless memorable journeys to places like Sebring and West Palm Beach in Florida, Road Atlanta in Georgia, and Lime Rock Park and Watkins Glen in New England. MacEachern goes on extended cross-continent jaunts to the fabled Monterey Historic Automobile Races in California no less than five times.
13,800 kilometres / The next generation
MacEachern’s son Craig joins the family’s carpet-cleaning business—today he’s the junior CEO. This same year Bill’s second son, Brian, heads off in a Porsche 935 with Canadian race-car driver Ludwig Heimrath to Mexico City, where Heimrath enters and wins a race. Brian is bitten by the racing bug. The father’s passion lives on in the next generation.
88,713 kilometres / Family ties
“My son Brian entered his first race in 1981 and never looked back,” says the proud father, who has made a far-reaching decision. His beloved 911 Turbo should remain in his family’s possession after he passes away, MacEachern reveals.
641,312 kilometres / Improvisation
Not everything goes smoothly. Like the time a fan pulley breaks while travelling south through Oregon on another trip to Monterey. “There was no way to get a replacement part fast enough,” says MacEachern. “But I managed to find a shop that could weld it.” And he made it to the races on time.
850,000 kilometres / Accident
A happy partnership of thirty-three years must be able to withstand a crisis or two. This can be true of cars and their owners as well. An SUV turns right from the centre lane and hits the now quite venerable Porsche. The impact dents the fender and damages an axle shaft and a suspension arm. But coincidence brings a solution along too. While MacEachern and the red-faced SUV driver examine the bruised vintage car, a flatbed trailer with a Volkswagen logo rumbles past. “Who’s that?” asks MacEachern. “Oh, that’s Eric. He owns a Volkswagen shop in town,” is the response. In short order, the 911 is at the shop and back in shape in time for MacEachern to drive straight through—over thirty hours!—and arrive in Monterey as planned for the races.
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1,000,000 kilometres / Celebration
“The car clicked over its one-millionth kilometre on the way to the famous swap meet in Hershey, Pennsylvania,” says MacEachern. “And we had a little celebration with champagne toasts when I got back to Toronto.”
1,253,584 kilometres / Outlook
The odometer on the 911 Turbo currently shows around 779,000 miles (1,253,584 kilometres). And the number keeps going up. MacEachern continues to drive his beloved automobile nearly every day. He can’t imagine any modern supercar he’d prefer. “The 930 was just such an amazing watershed machine. Porsche Turbos have set new standards of excellence as both racing machines and high-performance road machines. And they’re still a one-of-a-kind thrill to own and drive today.”
Text first published in the Porsche customer magazine Christophorus, No. 382
Text by Burt S. Levy // Photos by Rennfilms