Russell Built Fabrication wowed the 2019 SEMA Show with its Baja Spec Porsche 911. The build entered production, and the aftermarket tuner is now back with another creation. It’s called the Safari Sportsman that takes the 964-era Porsche 911 and turns it into a more affordable off-road menace.
The 911 Safari Sportsman is a bit toned down compared to the Baja Spec from the company, but the Sportsman comes packed with big upgrades. Russell Built re-engineered the entire suspension setup, integrating a rear subframe with box plate steel trailing arms and King Shocks internal bypass coilovers. The upgrades, which included lengthening the wheelbase and track, give the Porsche 911 10 inches of rear-wheel travel.
At the front, the tuner went to the same length improving the suspension, installing a steel plate lower A-arm, heavy-duty unit bearings and hubs, and a custom EXE-TC adjustable strut. The upgraded Porsche also comes with new adjustable camber plates. Visually, the Porsche gets the Turbo look with a widebody kit that helps contain the 911’s new off-road parts into a compelling package.
Russell Built designed the Safari Sportsman package to work with the 964’s stock drivetrain. However, the tuner will offer upgrades to customers who want more power. The company can build anything from a mild 3.8-liter overhaul to a 400-horsepower (298-kilowatt) 4.0-liter engine. Customers can also upgrade the transmission.
The package includes just the necessities for some off-road Porsche fun, with Russell Built providing an a la carte of accessories. The tuner offers two different roof racks, including a low-profile carbon-fiber unit. Customers can also opt for a traditional tube-style unit. The tuner also provides a roll hoop and rear-seat delete package, exclusive carbon-covered rally lights, an air compressor, steel tube bumpers, skid plates, and an oil cooler/AC condenser relocation kit.
Russell Built is taking orders now for the in-house builds, with pricing starting at $135,000. TJ Russell, the company’s founder, said that its goal with the Safari Sportsman package was to offer “something more obtainable” for 964 owners. The Safari Sportsman package is entirely bolt-on, with minimal fabrication required, allowing for a simpler and cheaper 911 conversion.