RE: Porsche 911 (992) Carrera | Driven

RE: Porsche 911 (992) Carrera | Driven

Friday 30th August

Porsche 911 (992) Carrera | Driven

With the 992 a more complex 911 than ever, could the best Carrera be a basic one?



Once upon a time, there were quite noticeable differences between a 911 Carrera and a Carrera S. They had engines of different sizes, most significantly, as well as wider bodies for the four-wheel drive cars. As you're probably aware, that's gone with the 992; all of the Carreras, be they two- or four-wheel drive, hardtop or soft-top, Carrera or Carrera S, use the same body and the same 3.0-litre, twin-turbo flat-six. Sure, the S uses different turbines and compressors for its power gain, though the prestige that might once have lain in owning the larger-engined Carrera has gone. It would appear that the two are closer than they ever have been, basically, and don't forget that the base 992 Carrera is now as powerful as a 997.2 Carrera S, with a wedge more torque. On paper, it is no lesser sibling.

At 1,505kg DIN, the Carrera is 10kg lighter than an S. With 385hp and 332lb ft, it's capable of 0-62mph in 4.2 seconds, 0-100mph in 9.3 seconds(!) and 182mph. That the biggest talking point might be the fitment of 19-inch front and 20-inch rears as standard (where the Carrera S has 20/21s) shows you how similar the cars should be.

And wouldn't you know, that's just how things feel on the road. Everything that's familiar from the 992 era of 911 is present and correct here: the impression of being really quite large, the uncannily adept damping, steering about as good as EPAS gets, an immaculate PDK gearbox and the sort of refinement never before known in a 911. It's a really lovely thing.


When pushed, however, there is a discernible difference in performance - the Carrera does give away 65hp to the S, as well as 59lb ft, after all. So there's never the ferocity delivered by the more powerful car, although it should be noted that the characteristics remain similar: it really is a superb turbo engine. There's a crispness to the throttle response associated with more expensive cars, vast, effortless torque from even lower engine speeds than the S and a real enthusiasm for revs - even once beyond peak power at 6,500rpm. With the sports exhaust fitted the noise is an intriguing one too, flat-six gargle allied to turbo whooshes and a searing top end, the latter incredibly loud in fact. Being a tad slower means there's more time to appreciate it, too...

So what of the wheel swap? Well, it's impossible to say, since all test cars on the launch were optionally equipped with the larger wheels amongst a smorgasbord of options - d'oh. No surprises, then, that the standard Carrera felt rather like an S, borderline identical in fact, which is to say pretty damn good. Certainly there's no impression of it being in any way inferior, steering with the same accuracy and consistency, riding plushly yet with flawless control, braking with the confidence and authority we've come to expect of Porsche sports cars.

With less power and torque but the same amount of rubber on the road (in this instance, at least), there's even less scope in a Carrera than a Carrera S for much in the way of tactile involvement or outright thrill, though that will likely bother prospective customers as much the manual gearbox that still isn't here - simply not a concern for the vast majority. Those who are bothered - types like us, most probably - will still be better served by secondhand 911s, this Carrera no back-to-basics driving machine. It was never going to be really, though it should be mentioned that there is already talk of another Carrera T...


Perversely, the power deficit actually means the Carrera powertrain seems to suit the 911 Cabriolet better. Sacrilege, surely, though there is some logic. Thanks to its additional power, the Carrera S Coupe is a better driving 992 than the Carrera. The Cabriolet, on the other hand, is as good as it's ever been, delivering precious little wobble (if sometimes a bit) and a chunk more ability than was probably expected. Combined with an engine that even in a lesser tune makes light work of the drop-top's mass, it's perhaps the best compromise achieved thus far. The penalties usually there in terms of dynamics and performance, being softer and heavier than the coupe, have been offset pretty much as far as possible by the chassis work and turbo engine; some buyers will always want the most performance, but the days of entry level 911 Cabs not cutting the mustard are long gone.

Is it damning with faint praise to say the Carrera suits best as a Cabriolet? Hopefully not, because it remains an unerringly complete sports car, as competitive at Β£80k-ish as the S is at Β£90k or so, though Porsche isn't stupid - it wouldn't sell you something better for less money. That extra punch (and resultant thrill) in the S feels worth the premium, certainly for those there to really drive their 911s, with precious little difference otherwise. For those who don't require it, though - and the torque of these turbo engines will probably convince more than ever - the Carrera is a more than acceptable substitute. Both cars will arrive in the UK very soon; expect plenty more satisfied customers not long after.


SPECIFICATION - PORSCHE 911 CARRERA (992)

Engine: 2,981cc, twin-turbo flat-six
Transmission: 8-speed PDK auto, rear-wheel drive
Power (hp): 385@6,500rpm
Torque (lb ft): 332@1,900-5,000rpm
0-62mph: 4.2 seconds (4.0 Sport Chrono)
Top speed: 182mph
Weight: 1,505kg (DIN)
MPG: 26.6-28.5 (WLTP)
CO2: 206-210g/km (NEDC equivalent)
Price: Β£82,793

SPECIFICATION - PORSCHE 911 CARRERA CABRIOLET (992)

Engine: 2,981cc, twin-turbo flat-six
Transmission: 8-speed PDK auto, rear-wheel drive
Power (hp): 385@6,500rpm
Torque (lb ft): 332@1,900-5,000rpm
0-62mph: 4.4 seconds (estimate)
Top speed: 182mph (estimate)
Weight: 1,575kg (DIN)
MPG: 26.2-28.0 (WLTP)
CO2: 206-210g/km (NEDC equivalent)
Price: Β£92,438

Search for a Porsche 911 (991) here










Author
Discussion

skylarking808

Original Poster:

256 posts

31 months

Thursday 29th August
quotequote all
Red Porkers making a comeback?

sidesauce

1,029 posts

163 months

Thursday 29th August
quotequote all
De-chrome that car immediately.

Royd72

23 posts

37 months

Thursday 29th August
quotequote all
Chrome and gold, next this will be the bi/metal option and another 2k

forzaminardi

1,913 posts

132 months

Thursday 29th August
quotequote all
I'm not a Porsche fan by any means, nor do I especially care for the ins and outs of the various 911 versions, but that is a fine looking motor car in my opinion.

Raygun

2,728 posts

65 months

Thursday 29th August
quotequote all
Don't Porsche milk it. Has this one got different headlight bulbs to the one revealed last month?

jwrigglesworth

20 posts

49 months

Thursday 29th August
quotequote all
82 grand my @rse, who ever specced a porsche without ticking an options box?

GTEYE

1,400 posts

155 months

Thursday 29th August
quotequote all
Gold wheels are a major faux-pas, apart from that looks good.

But £82k.? No chance - it’s a minimum +£15k in options.

Small Car

845 posts

144 months

Thursday 29th August
quotequote all
So the only difference to the S is the six pot brakes in the S and tweaked suspension with a different engine map? So add 200 brake via a remap and you’re still well ahead on price and power than the S if you can live with the brakes and suspension (which I suspect you won’t notice?).

m3jappa

4,333 posts

163 months

Thursday 29th August
quotequote all
I can't keep up with all the variants of the 911 but someone down my road has what i think is one of these, the rear end lights look the same anyway and its in riveria blue, my god does it look incredible!

Fetchez la vache

5,171 posts

159 months

Thursday 29th August
quotequote all
Loving the overall looks of this 911.

However, would I be overly cynical to think that for many the main reason for paying the extra £10k for the "s" over the base Carerra would be for the little the "s" on the back, so that others know they didn't go for the "base" model (however good the base model is!)?

thelostboy

3,469 posts

170 months

Thursday 29th August
quotequote all
As much as the Carrera looks a bargain, I'm not sure I could deal with the teeny brakes.

Has to be said that, would you need any more car than a new Carrera cab? So many boxes ticked.

Grantstown

151 posts

32 months

Thursday 29th August
quotequote all
991.2 base 370hp v S 415hp (45 difference)

992 base 380hp v S 450hp (70 difference)

Rather than being closer than ever, perhaps Porsche are trying to introduce a bit of daylight between 2 very similar cars. Torque on the base is unchanged from the 991.2 also.

Are you sure that the turbines are smaller as your recent article on the Litchfield remap shows that they map to identical performance figures?? With the 991.2 they remapped differently.

Brakes I suppose could be upgraded to girodiscs when the time comes.

Dave Hedgehog

11,070 posts

149 months

Thursday 29th August
quotequote all
the exhaust sleeves look very odd / out of place

BFleming

1,308 posts

88 months

Thursday 29th August
quotequote all
I'm not sure that a 911 Cabriolet would ever be the recommendation - they're unloved on the secondhand market, and have been forever.

2 GKC

526 posts

50 months

Thursday 29th August
quotequote all
"On paper, it is no lesser sibling."


That's exactly what it is isn't it?!

Baldchap

1,390 posts

37 months

Thursday 29th August
quotequote all
I test drove an S and for me, the 911 isn't a sports car any more. It's a really fast Audi A4 or VW Golf. They've managed to engineer all the involvement out of the drive.

Might be different on track, but at road speeds it didn't do it for me.

Jon_S_Rally

547 posts

33 months

Thursday 29th August
quotequote all
The gold wheels on this are not good but, while they can easily be changed, the rear end can't. The new light design, the chunky lower bumper area, it all just looks a bit off to me. The rear of a 911 used to be clean and simple. This looks bulbous and fussy. Not good.

mike150

400 posts

145 months

Thursday 29th August
quotequote all
Baldchap said:
I test drove an S and for me, the 911 isn't a sports car any more. It's a really fast Audi A4 or VW Golf. They've managed to engineer all the involvement out of the drive.

Might be different on track, but at road speeds it didn't do it for me.
You're bang on here...…………...I love my current S3 Audi S-Tronic with a Revo upgrade but...………dull every day car.

I also love my Elise 220S...…………fun to drive car.

Modern cars are getting heavier and modern engineering, particularly electronics engineering is making driving very comfortable, very easy to go fast and very dull and bland.

The whole point of enjoying driving is to feel it, be involved, for that you need a simple, light car or a classic car as they are all simple and light!

Edited by mike150 on Thursday 29th August 11:10

av185

9,157 posts

72 months

Thursday 29th August
quotequote all
BFleming said:
I'm not sure that a 911 Cabriolet would ever be the recommendation - they're unloved on the secondhand market, and have been forever.
Unsurprisingly the market suggests otherwise.

ash73

16,506 posts

166 months

Thursday 29th August
quotequote all
The 911 has gone chav-tastic. Those black plastic panels, exhausts and wheels look absolutely st.