Beyond the Manufacturers’ World Championship, in 1976 Porsche also participated in the World Sportscar Championship (Group 6), which was announced shortly before the start of the season. In record time the race engineers developed a new race car in the Type 936 which was to start alongside the 935 production race car. Technically, the development of the open Spyder car took its orientation from the proven 908/03 and 917/10 designs. The result was an aluminum tubular frame covered by an aerodynamic plastic body.
The car was powered by the 2.1-liter flat-six bi-turbo engine from the 911 Turbo RSR with an output of 540 hp (397 kW). The first road-ready 936—dubbed the “Black Widow” internally for its matte black paint job—was put through its paces in extensive training on the French track by Paul Ricard in the second half of February. In June 1976, Jacky Ickx and Gijs van Lennep drove to a commanding overall victory at Le Mans.
In the World Sportscar Championship, Porsche had clinched the title after just four of seven races and triumphed at season’s end with the maximum point haul. In 1977, Jacky Ickx, Jürgen Barth, and Hurley Haywood outpaced the armada of six factory Renaults. In 1981, the 936 celebrated a sensational comeback with another overall victory at Le Mans.
Porsche 936 Specifications
Build year: 1976
Class: Group 6
Engine: Flat-six bi-turbo
Displacement: 2,142 cc
Power: 540 hp (397 kW)
Weight empty: 1,631 lbs.
Top track speed: 223 mph
Most important win: Le Mans victories in 1976, 1977, 1981
Drivers in 1977: Jacky Ickx, Jürgen Barth,Hurley Haywood