New Gemballa Marsien unveiled as 740bhp dune-bashing supercar

The Gemballa Marsien is based on the current-generation Porsche 911 Turbo S, but it has even more power and a host of off-road ready modifications

This is the new Gemballa Marsien. It’s a specially modified version of the 992-generation Porsche 911 Turbo S that has been set-up for off-road use. Prices start from €495,000 (around £420,000) excluding taxes, shipping and the cost of the Porsche 911 donor car. Production will be limited to just 40 examples.

The project was dreamt up by the young entrepreneur Marc Philipp Gemballa, who is the son of the famous Porsche specialist Uwe Gemballa. However, the Marsien is the first project to come from Marc Philipp’s newly launched tuning firm. It stands separate from his father’s company, which was shut down by the German authorities in May 2010.

The Marsien draws influence from 1980s Paris-Dakar rally racing, in which beefed-up versions of sports cars such as the Porsche 911 and Porsche 959 claimed victories from mud-plugging off-roaders like the Range Rover and Mitsubishi Pajero.

Its bodywork is all carbon fibre and its styling was inspired by Porsche’s classic Dakar racers. For example, its rear end has similarities with the 959 Dakar, with a kindred spoiler and comparable air vents at either side of the bumper.

Other tweaks include new LED headlamps, a fresh rear light bar and a host of exposed carbon fibre components, including the front splitter, mirror caps, decklid, rear diffuser and air intakes. Buyers can choose from any paint colour they desire, although Gemballa also offers the option to spec the Marsien’s entire body in exposed carbon fibre.

Gemballa called on the help of Porsche tuning specialist RUF for the Marsien’s engine. The firm used the 911 Turbo S’s twin-turbocharged 3.7-litre flat six as a starting point, increasing its output from 641bhp and 800Nm of torque to 740bhp and 930Nm of torque. 

If that’s not enough, Gemballa also offers an even more potent power upgrade, which swaps the engine’s standard turbos for upgraded units to take output to a whopping 819bhp.

In both cases, the engine breathes through a new air filter from the Italian specialist BMC, which has been designed to better protect it from dust and foreign particles when off-roading. Akrapovic also provided an entirely new titanium exhaust system for the project, which is both lighter and more free-flowing than the standard Porsche pipework.

Gemballa made equally extensive modifications to the suspension, fitting a bespoke double wishbone setup on the front axle and dedicated off-road dampers from KW Automotive. The Marsien also has an adjustable ride-height, which can raise the car’s overall ground clearance to 250mm at the touch of a button.

As the company aims for buyers to enjoy their cars both on and off the road, each example comes with two sets of wheels and tyres, designed for each environment. The road wheels measure 20 inches up front and 21 inches at the rear, and come wrapped in Michelin rubber. The off-road wheels are an inch smaller across the axles and feature all-terrain tyres. 

The racy upgrades continue inside, with buyers getting Alcantara upholstery, carbon fibre treadplates, fabric door pulls, racing harnesses and a fire extinguisher. The standard Porsche 911 centre console has also been swapped for a new Carrera GT-inspired unit. 

Now check out our spy shots of Porsche’s own off-road version of the 911 – the new 911 Safari

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