Kalmar Automotive’s RS-6 is a 996 911 Dakar

26th January 2024
Ethan Jupp

If you, like us, wish you had the money or the means to own a Porsche 911 Dakar, there might yet be an alternative for you to fulfil that particular dream. It was inevitable really, wasn’t it? The off-road resto-mod revolution is underway. Meet the Kalmar RS-6, an off-road weapon that envisions what a 996-based Dakar might have looked like.


Even just to look at, it’s a tasty thing and really makes you realise just how big-boned the 911 has become these days. By comparison, the 996-based RS-6 is positively sleek and slender. Each conversion is bespoke, though the original water-cooled Mezger flat-six is at the heart of each. The range of options for base cars covers all but the GT3s in the 996 range, from a base Carrera to a full-fat 996 Turbo, so power figures can range from 300PS (221kW) to over 500PS (368kW).

To make a 996 off-road ready Kalmar jacks the car up by 80mm and installs an inverted shock absorber design for improved reliability. It also features a custom spring set, roll centre adjusting subframe kit, uprated top mounts, bushes, driveshafts and strut brace. Should customers desire, an even more sophisticated adaptive adjustable shock can be specified, which also allows a 50mm drop for more conventional sporting road dynamics.


The ground clearance, as Kalmar amusingly notes, is the same as that of a second-generation Porsche Cayenne. Standard on every conversion also comes a bespoke limited-slip differential. The underneath is protected front to back with 5-8mm panelling, with extra protection for the front-mounted radiators. Topping the RS-6 quite literally is the roof rail survival kit, featuring everything from jerry cans, to spare wheels and a high-output LED bar.

On the inside, there’s been a bit of a lightweighting campaign that’s dispensed with all ‘non-essential items’. These include sound deadening, excess trim and so on. There are proper Recaro bucket seats and a roll cage in the rear. If you want to go even further, a full cage is optional, as is a fly-off handbrake and a timing system.


So, what’s the cost of all this? The amazing thing is that you’re unlikely to get to a finished article that costs more than a sturdy 911 Dakar, even with a 996 Turbo conversion. Obviously, you provide the base car but conversions start at €45,000 plus local taxes.

That speaks to Kalmar’s reasoning for developing a 996, which is that 964s and 993s – which were the basis of their rally spec conversions to date – are getting really rather expensive. So yes, a very trick thing for a not unreasonable amount of cash. Count us in…

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