Highlights from your Porsche correspondence via email, social media and Total911.com
dear Sir, Total 911 has been an educator, companion and friend to me for many years, yet I have never written in previously. However, I simply could not hold back kudos to your team with the superlative issue 164, which put together in one issue so many of my favourite Porsche chat topics.
I enjoyed your feature on Andreas Preuninger; I consider him a rockstar in the Porsche or, indeed, automotive world, and his Youtube discussions on the GT cars often compete with the missus for my attention when I am home. So it was with much amusement that I learned he was a “freak for rock music” and collects guitars…
But you also put side-by-side the feature on 30 years of 4WD and the 997 GTS dossier, and unwittingly re-kindled within me a conflict of desire that I had thought was long gone. Let me explain.
I live in Singapore and, swayed by rave reviews, I spent some years hunting down the perfect 997 GTS. There are only a few here and I was not able to find a specimen to my liking, but my journey was not wasted, as I was able to learn much on the beloved 997 both from chats with fellow enthusiasts and fantastic periodicals such as yours. I ended up with a 2010 C2S, and thereafter exchanged it for a 2009 C4S at my friendly neighbourhood Porsche dealer.
Soon after collecting it my neighbour, a passionate petrolhead who counts in his collection a Guards red 993 Carrera 2 tuned to produce well in excess of 300hp, could not resist coming to me with a deep frown and a tone that barely masked his disapproval, to ask why I had chosen to abandon a ‘pure’ C2S for a C4S.
I was quite proud to distill the fruits of my hunt and my studies into three main reasons. I found the C4S to be no less involving, and its steering was obviously steadier with a splash more weight to my liking when compared with the C2S (a plus for a daily driver). I enjoyed being able to drive the C4S no differently in both the dry and the wet (compared with the UK average at around 36 per cent with total precipitation of 885mm, it rains on average some 60 per cent of the year on this tropical island with an annual rainfall of some 2,166mm). Lastly, that je ne sais quoi 44mm-wider rear, accentuated by the iconic red reflector uniting its two rear lamps, always made me walk around my car after parking just so I could look at it. My neighbour laughed and nodded his head with childlike glee and we went our separate ways – another 4WD 911 convert perhaps?
Reading your feature proved to be the perfect coda for my 997 journey, for it consolidated and enhanced my learning and love for the 4WD 911 which, notwithstanding the current perfection of the technology, continues to be dogged with ‘fake news’ about it being more sterile and less agile when compared with its 2WD sister.
Flipping thereafter to the buyer’s guide on the 997 GTS, I was reminded of the start of my journey and, contented and happy as I am, it admittedly stirred up a what-if and a what-could-have been. It also leads to my questions, which have never been satisfactorily answered in many forums and sadly not in your guide: acknowledging the brilliance of the GTS, but putting aside the aesthetics (the black-themed exterior bits, the Alcantara interior and the ability to delete the rear seats) and its reduced noise insulation, is the GTS not simply just a C2S or C4S with all mechanical-enhancement options ticked? If my C4S already has the wide body and Sports Chrono Package Plus, would I be getting the full GTS experience if I retrofitted the powerkit? Is the GTS really an example of how a car can be greater than the sum of its options or is it just hype? Shawn chen
thanks for the kind words, Shawn – I’m also glad to see our content in t911 continues to stir the emotions! In regards to c4s versus GTS, some aspects of the Gts’s specification can be replicated (you mention the powerkit would boost your c4s to the 408hp of the GTS), but then there are some options which are exclusive to the GTS, for example the centre-locking rs Spyder wheels. You’ll also need to check if spring rates and damping settings are the same. For the money – and lengths – you’d go to for a full conversion, you’re better off simply buying a genuine GTS.