Suffice it to say that it’s the little guys who don’t get enough credit. This is especially true for small roadsters: The MG Sprite, the Alfa Romeo Giulietta Spider, the Karmann Ghia — and of course, that tiny German known as the Porsche 914. Advertised as the affordable Porsche/VW sports car, the small 914 got short shrift in the two automakers’ botched attempt to sell it as two different models. The Porsche 914/6 didn’t get nearly the recognition it deserved, due to production costs that jacked up its price point, while the more affordable VW 914/4 was a hit.
The 914 is now a bargain-priced sports car favorite for collectors, and there are clearly those who remain stalwartly passionate about the low-slung, sporty targa (a stowable fixed roof). Due to its size and storage limitations, you’ll likely never take a real road trip in it (unless you tow it), but it begs to be driven on a cool fall day when its flat-four (or flat-six) engine can open up. Gear Patrol brings you the perfect driving kit to keep your road garb fashionable but simple, just like the classic 914.
Apolis Archive Jacket
Just like a vintage Porsche, the military jacket will never go out of style. It’s classic, practical and good for three seasons. Apolis’ version is made with light but strong Indian cotton that’s been garment dyed for a great vintage hue, and stone washed to keep you comfy. The absence of lower patch pockets gives it a more modern look; they’re replaced by simpler slit pockets and a zip front without buttons.
Icebreaker Quattro Short Sleeve Polo
Wool isn’t just for winter — when it’s lightweight 150gm merino in the form of a sporty polo, it can be worn year round. Icebreaker’s Quattro Polo keeps you insulated when there’s a chill and breathes when things get warmer, making it more versatile than a cotton shirt. Plus, it’s naturally odor-resistant and soft against the skin. The Quattro keeps things casual and sporty with a self collar, contrasting color highlights and a straight hem. After all, it’s unlikely you would drive the 914 to the opera house. (Not that you couldn’t.)
Levi’s Dockers Slim Alpha Khakis
You’ll be dancing across the 914’s pedals, so you’ll be best served by comfortable pants that allow for movement. The Slim Alpha Khaki sports a crisp, slim cut with tapered legs, and it promises mobility with 100 percent cotton. Dockers is an American brand, but their take on a European fit is spot-on.
Archival Clothing Workers Belt
The 914 has a bit of a reputation for austerity. Match it with clean, simple accessories, such as Archival Clothing’s Workers Belt. Made with Pennsylvania harness leather and a tough brass buckle, it may not be overly ornate, but it’s certainly well made. It’s a perfect addition to a casual outfit — and like a Porsche, it will only look better with time.
Buttero Sand Suede Sneakers
To handle the 914’s pedals, grippy shoes are a must; but you’ll want to stay stylish as well, so you’ll need a great pair of classic sneakers. Buttero’s suede jobbies look as clean and unadorned as the 914. Hand crafted with Italian suede uppers and a grippy rubber sole, they’ll look as good at café stop along the country road as they do on the local track.
Proper Shop Gray 6 Panel Canvas Ball Cap
When driving with the top down, you’ll need to guard your dome in style. Proper Shop’s very simple 6 Panel Canvas Ball Cap is made with 100 percent cotton canvas, suede and leather for a hat that doesn’t scream for attention. The adjustable leather strap secures it for fast driving, while the versatile gray top goes with just about anything you’ll wear on a drive.
More than any other accessory, the right wristwatch can elevate your style statement. Magrette’s new Leoncino evokes the early ’70s with a squarish case and slim profile. The 42mm stainless steel case is brushed, polished and bead blasted; the old radium color Super Luminova on the hands and markers keeps things vintage. The Miyota 9015 automatic movement is almost as smooth as the flat-six engine of a 914. Almost.
Smith Optics Clayton
Add a metal wire to the bridge of your sunglasses, and you’re automatically euro-chic. We’re not sure that’s what Smith Optics was going for, but the effect is the same, nevertheless. The metal detailing adds just a touch of character to the glossy acetate frames. Plus, the polarized and color-focused ChromaPop optics are ideal for both bright and hazy driving conditions.
Kaufmann Mercantile Handmade Leather Key Holder
The 914’s key is small, simple and square; keep it safe and add a little interest with Kaufmann Mercantile’s Handmade Leather Key Holder. The oval shape holds keys at both ends and allows them to be folded inward for compact storage. It’s made with oiled leather and labeled at each point so you can find what you need at a glance.
Frost River Large Zippy Tote
Though there’s not much room for luggage in the 914, you can easily carry a day bag for electronic accessories and a change of clothes. Frost River’s bag blends carry-on, briefcase and tote with an appropriately vintage look. The premium version adds a tough leather bottom to the canvas bag, and each model has rolled leather handles, an adjustable web shoulder strap and a zippered top to keep all of your belongings secure.