Motoring

In Porsche’s 911 hi­er­ar­chy the mod­els with the long­est name rule - so the Car­rera 4S is bet­ter than the Car­rera S then? Wrong, writes wheels’ De­jan Jo­vanovic

Friday - - Contents -

With the Car­rera 4S, more is less.

If you want a con­vert­ible, then go ahead, the Porsche 911 Car­rera 4S Cabriolet is bril­liant. But buy­ing an all-wheel drive drop-top sports car in a re­gion where it rains twice a year – and even then, you’ll just take the Cayenne out – makes about as­much sense as tick­ing the Dh1,590 seat heat­ing and Dh900 steer­ing wheel heat­ing op­tions. Al­though you’ll prob­a­bly do those too, be­cause full op­tions…

On dry sur­faces such as the ones we’re on 99.99 per cent of the time, all-wheel drive is good for only one thing, and that is leash­ing the rear end from step­ping out through cor­ner ex­its. That is not good han­dling, how­ever; that is merely good ac­cel­er­a­tion. So why, then, does this new drop-top Car­rera 4S ac­cel­er­ate from zero to 100kph just as quickly as the Car­rera S? Be­cause 50kg of all-wheel drive pop­py­cock, that’s why. In fact from zero to 160kph the rear-wheel drive car is two-tenths faster.

I can’t un­der­stand, there­fore, why any­one would buy this fan­tas­tic car for Dh481,130, when you could buy a fan­tas­tic car for Dh444,730. That’s at least four months of pay­ments af­ter 20 per cent down. Trade in a Corolla and you could call it six months; half a year of free Porsche own­er­ship since the reg­u­lar-wheel drive S Cab is 35 grand less.

Ba­si­cally I could not rec­om­mend a Car­rera 4 or 4S any less if it came with colonoscopy in­ter­vals of 30,000km in­stead of ser­vice in­ter­vals. But it’s a phe­nom­e­nal sports car, so here’s some re­view­ing, in case it still counts…

This tester Car­rera 4S comes in a strik­ing Aqua Blue metal­lic with a match­ing soft-top and the Dh14,040 SportDe­sign pack­age, which in­cludes

the iconic duck­tail rear spoiler, so I thor­oughly rec­om­mend that when you don’t buy your Car­rera 4S Cabriolet you make sure to tick this op­tions box.

It also has 20-inch Sport Techno rims – these cost an ad­di­tional Dh4,150, which you might want to know means you’re pay­ing Dh207,50 per inch.

But what’s it like to drive? It’s just as awe­some to drive as any 911 – full of vigour, with the most per­fect driv­ing po­si­tion this side of a sin­gle­seater, lux­u­ri­ous cabin ameni­ties, the best elec­tro-me­chan­i­cal power steer­ing on the mar­ket, and an ad­dic­tive en­gine note with the Sports ex­haust flaps open.

Quickly the start­ing rou­tine in a 911 set­tles into: twist Le Mans-in­spired key, hit ex­haust but­ton, nail the throt­tle, then buckle up, se­lect gear, etc… Ah, the Porsche flat-six, may it for­ever sound like a hoarse Johnny Cash belch­ing in a tin can.

The en­gine in ques­tion in the 911 Car­rera 4S Cabriolet is the 3.8-litre boxer with 400bhp at 7,400rpm, 440Nm at 5,600rpm, plus sev­en­speed PDK and Sport Chrono op­tions. Other ex­tras rel­e­vant here in­clude the rec­om­mended Porsche Dy­namic Chas­sis Con­trol (body-roll con­trol) and Power Steer­ing Plus – the com­pany stub­bornly sticks to coun­ter­in­tu­itive gear-shift switches.

Be­ing a drop-top there is also no­tice­able trim clat­ter if you hit a bump or rut in the road, but the chas­sis hasn’t got any flex­ing is­sues or any­thing like that.

Be­ing wider than the reardrive mod­els the 4S Cabriolet ac­com­mo­dates the rear track with flared arches and grips like it’s pos­sessed; pre­cisely like two-wheel drive 911s. If you switch all the

elec­tron­ics off you just might get laugh­ably pre­dictable four-wheel skids with enough lee­way to be­lieve you’re in slow mo­tion.

This is as fo­cused and ca­pa­ble a sports car as they come, un­less a Car­rera S comes.

In our part of the world life is not a rat race, it’s a num­bers race, with the win­ner be­ing who­ever gets the most dig­its on the boot (en­gine) lid. This, then, is purely an im­pulse buy – “But, the 4S has a 4 and the S doesn’t have a 4? But full op­tions?”

So if you don’t know what you’re do­ing go ahead and make the sales­man’s day. The rest of us will be on Porsche’s on­line con­fig­u­ra­tor, spec­c­ing an S.

With a wider track,

3.8-litre 400bhp en­gine, SportDe­sign pack­age and Sport Techno wheels, the new 911 Car­rera 4S Cabriolet is im­pres­sive

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UAE

© PressReader. All rights reserved.