THE PERFECT 911 SPEC
Go easy on the options list and you’ll have the perfect new Carrera for little more than list price
THESE DAYS £77,891 BUYS you a new 911 Carrera, the root of the 911 family tree, and the lowest-powered, humblest version of the world’s favourite rear-engined coupe.
On evo, we never get to see such a car, because the press office likes to spec cars that show off the additional technology and customisation features available. Similarly, walk into a Porsche Centre tomorrow and the salesperson will be only too keen to indulge your wishes for more of everything – at a cost, of course, noting that it ‘really is necessary for resale values’. And anyway, on a PCP finance deal it’s easy to tick boxes and worry tomorrow. This is why the £100,000 911 is the norm these days. Feels expensive, doesn’t it, for a ‘base’ 911.
Manufacturers rely on this back door inflation of the price tag to harvest significant profit (heard the one about Ferrari’s £2400 Apple Carplay option?), and while you might be wasting your hard-earned, you may also be spoiling the car you’re buying. The standard car is usually, if not always, the car the engineers have sweated over longest to perfect, and adding goodies adds unnecessary weight and complexity.
Take the Carrera. We’ve never been completely convinced by Porsche’s first Above: Porsche’s configurator can be a tempting, but bank account-draining, place to spend time turbocharged Carrera models, but one thing we all agree on in the evo office is that the standard Carrera gives you 99.9 per cent of the 991.2 Carrera experience.
To the configurator! There are four primary colours available. Either Guards Red or solid black is a fine choice, saving a minimum of £834 over metallic shades. Stick with the standard 19-inch wheels: they’re a good design (for once); you don’t want to try to make it look like an S or a Turbo, plus the ride will be nicer, and the car more usable, with a taller sidewall. A black leather interior is a no-cost selection, although on a black car I’d be tempted by Saddle Brown (it’s very dark) to make things a bit more interesting (the salesperson won’t like that one). A £324 upgrade to the basic sports seats is worth it for the additional shoulder support, but sadly you can’t get manual – and hence lighter – normal seats any more.
Now to the ‘exterior’ options. LED lamps are £1835, but there’s nothing wrong with the bi-xenons. ‘Porsche Entry and Drive’ for £774? Privacy glass? I don’t think so. You’ll save £2483 by sticking with three pedals, and in spite of the seven-speed manual’s relative clunkiness, it’s still a lovely thing to have a manual Carrera, and an instant credibility ‘win’. You definitely don’t need ceramics at £6018. A sports exhaust? Unnecessary at £1844 – the turbo motor is hardly a naturally aspirated Mezger. I’d go without the mode switch, too – more endless fiddling, and for £1271, too.
Spending £228 on cruise control seems useful for those continental jaunts, but the active system is always a pain and not worth £1557. Seat ventilation? Oh come on. Sounds? That’s what the flat-six is for.
All in, that means a princely sum of £552 on options, and a retail price of £78,443. My one possible weakness? A £543 GT (smaller) steering wheel trimmed in Alcantara, with matching gearlever: driver contact points are crucial, electronic toys are not. Stand your ground and spec wisely.