Porsche’s next 911 shapes up as its biggest seller yet
The whine from Porsche purists is becoming almost as distinctive as the sound of the brand’s iconic 911 sports car. As each new model is released, Porsche fanatics insist it’s not as pure as the last.
However, if history is a guide the new eighth-generation 911 will go on to become the most popular iteration yet — because of the growing number of people around the world who can afford one.
Looking familiar yet completely new from the ground up, the 911 was unveiled at the Los Angeles motor show. The covers came off as the 911 clocked up a million sales after 55 years.
The 911 may conjure up images of speedunlimited German autobahns — and it is still honed for these conditions — but for all the gadgets on the new model, we can thank China, the biggest market for Porsche since 2015.
The formula of swoopy silhouette and powerful engine in the back has not changed.
As with every model before it, the new generation 911 promises to push the laws of physics.
It has the key factors that Porsche owners — and dreamers — care about: more power and faster acceleration.
Porsche has slashed almost half a second from the claimed 0 to 100km/h time, a big achievement when the original time was so low.
The Carrera S is comfortably a sub-foursecond car, clocking 3.7 secs in rear-drive layout and 3.6 all-wheel drive. It wasn’t that long ago that such performance was the exclusive province of million-dollar supercars.
Of course, the new 911 is not only about speed. Today’s Porsche customers also want the latest mod-cons.
To that end, standard fare now includes a massive 10.9-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay/Android Auto and embedded navigation with real-time traffic updates.
The recessed instrument cluster and simple yet elegant dash design are said to have been inspired by 911s from the 1970s.
In what Porsche claims is a world first, it has developed a “wet” driving mode that “detects water on the road, preconditions the control systems accordingly and warns the driver, who can then set up the vehicle for a particular emphasis on safety, by simply pushing a button or using the mode switch on the steering wheel”.
The standard warn and brake assist detects the risk of collisions with moving objects and triggers emergency braking if necessary.
Night vision assist uses a thermal imaging camera that helps identify pedestrians, cyclists and wildlife at night, hopefully a better execution than other bands’ night vision setups. The tech itself can be a distraction when the driver should in fact be looking at the road.
In the Carrera S, the “boxer” six-cylinder turbo gets a 22kW bump to 331kW. Torque figures and engine capacity have yet to be released and, according to the limited figures supplied by Porsche, the new model hasn’t grown significantly in size.
The price has, though. The Carrera S will cost from $265,000 and the 911 Carrera 4S from $281,100, plus on-roads — increases of about $10,000 each.
Porsche says the new models can be ordered now and are due in Australia between March and June.
PRESTIGE — LA MOTOR SHOW