‘Budget’ bad boys
Porsche also chose a racetrack for the product launch of its latest road rockets, the 911 Carrera 4S, 911 Turbo and 911 Turbo S. It was their world launch, but Porsche didn’t invite the motoring press to an iconic Italian or Spanish racing circuit, it brought them here. After a multimillionrand upgrade, thanks to its new owners, Porsche SA, the Kyalami Grand Prix Circuit is better than ever and the envy of many a motor sport fan and racing driver anywhere in the world.
Kyalami is known to be a challenging track, which made me slightly nervous as I slid into the seat of a bright-red, left-hand drive Porsche 911 Turbo S, the fastest car in the manufacturer’s model range. How fast? From rest, it will sprint to 100km/h in 2.9 seconds or less and won’t run out of steam before reaching 330km/h.
A good thing then that the engine powers all four wheels, for maximum traction. And the front disc brakes are not much smaller than the rings of Saturn.
After four laps on the track, I drew the following conclusions: the 911 Turbo S is a towering achievement and possibly the best car I have driven, for reasons too numerous to list. One of them is that it “talks” to the driver. Through the steering wheel and the seat of your pants you can feel exactly what the car is doing and how far it can be pushed before exhilaration becomes expiration. It does this so well it might even teach your boyfriend to communicate.
The downside to motor marvels like the Type R and Turbo S? They expose us to ourselves as the weakest link in the manmachine chain, but they do make us look and feel like racing drivers when we’re not.
But that can be our little secret.