Porsche 911 − the consistently cutting-edge classic
The Porsche 911 has enjoyed a unique history: for over 50 years, it has been not only a sports car but a way of life. There are over 20 models now available, combining individuality, sportiness and comfort in typical Porsche style.
As the successor to the Porsche 356, the 911 has won the hearts of sports car fans from the very beginning. Following the celebrated world premiere at the 1963 IAA trade fair in Frankfurt, the first models were received by customers one year later. The air-cooled six-cylinder boxer engine featured a cubic capacity of two litres and delivered 130 horsepower, enough to reach a speed of 210 kilometres per hour. Porsche quickly expanded the range, presenting the 911 Targa in late 1966. A milestone in the history of the model was the unveiling of the first 911 Turbo in 1974, boasting a three-litre engine, 260 horsepower and an eye-catching rear spoiler. Thanks to its unique combination of luxury and performance, the Turbo became synonymous with Porsche as a brand.
Year after year and generation after generation, Porsche has continued to develop the 911. Body variants such as the convertible and speedster were added to the portfolio, as were upgrades including all-wheel drive and the lightweight chassis. The watershed moment in the history of the 911 came in 1997 with the introduction of water cooling for the boxer engine.
The current generation of the Porsche 911 entered production in 2011, representing one of the biggest upgrades in the history of the classic sports car. Nearly 90 per cent of the components have been redesigned or enhanced, and only efficient turbo engines are now deployed in the all-new lightweight body. Advances in technology have in turn enabled improvements in terms of the design and proportions. One of the most striking examples of this is the wheelbase, which has been extended by 100 millimetres. With a total length of almost 4.5 metres and a maximum width of around 1.8 metres, however, the 911 remains the most compact sports car in its class.
All models are based on the same classic drive concept with a six-cylinder boxer engine in the rear. The power of this engine currently ranges from 272 kilowatts (370 horsepower) in the 911 Carrera to 515 kilowatts (700 horsepower) in the 911 GT2 RS. This brings us to the core strength of the 911 – that of translating power into driving dynamics. This is achieved by means of intelligent control systems that are based on highly developed sports car chassis and deployed according to the respective model and equipment. Examples of this include the active damping system PASM, the rear-axle steering, the roll control PDCC and the intelligent all-wheel drive PTM. On 11 May 2017, the 911 became a millionaire: as of December 31, 2017, a total of 1,019,334 units of this classic sports car have rolled off the production line.