It’s like sitting down and doing another Beatles album. I probably wouldn’t want to be the bloke in charge of making the new Porsche 911 because the weight of expectations comes crushing down the minute you even think about it.
The Porsche 911 is not just another sports car as much as a darling of the automotive world with a fan-base that would make any 70s rock band blush. The 911 harks back to 1963, yet the car you see here is only the eighth generation; thus a new 911 is as common as spotting Halley’s Comet.
So, what’s so special about the 911? Well its recipe has not been tinkered with over the years. It’s basically a sports car with its engine at the wrong place yet the engineers worked around this anomaly to turn it into a device for motoring perfection.
Porsche has not deviated from the norm and yet has also managed to keep up with the feverish pace of development encompassing the sports car world at the moment. Yet the fact that it’s our ‘sports car of the year’ is pretty much testimony to the fact that Porsche has nailed it again.
However, before we discuss its sublime dynamics let us talk about its sensuous lines as while it’s a 911, it’s arguably the sexiest iteration yet. Codenamed 992 the new generation 911 has swollen in its dimensions but the bigger canvas makes the lines tighter and flow better with a design purity you would not find anywhere else.
The front is instantly recognizable with the round headlamps along with the typical Porsche snout. However, the swooping side and the classic rear-styling are what make enthusiasts go weak in their knees. The new one is even wider and like all new Porsche’s there is the light bar which extends all the way at the rear. Simply stunning.
When it comes to the interior, the 911 has always bowed down to the altar of minimalism and the 992 is no different. You have the best quality materials and leather covering every surface but the interior is devoid of theatrical flourishes with the business of driving pleasure being taken seriously.
You have a massive new touch-screen and all the usual infotainment features along with a long list of luxuries befitting any limousine. Yet amidst all this, a nod to its illustrious past is very much apparent with the analogue rev counter. Just lovely.
The driving experience is also layered with sepia tinted glasses as you still start with a key-like switch and the driving position is nothing short of spectacular-it’s surprising how many get this wrong but Porsche is right on the money here
The moment you start it, the 3.0 twin-turbo flat-six wakes up with a throaty roar and the sports exhaust lets out a meaty and raspy tune without being antisocial. My first encounter with the new 911 tells a lot about its astonishing everyday usability as it nonchalantly dodges moon like craters on Mumbai roads. Chaotic traffic doesn’t ruffle this sports car as it’s calm and composed. Other sports cars please learn.
Anyways with an empty stretch in sight, I immediately bury the throttle and the way the 911 lunges forward is scarcely believable. The scenery around you blurs and your grip on the meaty steering wheel hardens as it rockets you to near illegal speeds with ease. Restraint is something you need to have in abundance when you’re driving this on public roads.
Yes, while near 500 bhp does that, it’s the handling and immersive driving experience that impresses me more. The steering is delicate and dripping with precision while the rearengine bias gives this car a demeanour which is hard to explain but so easy to fall in love with. The 911 involves you in its experience and drowns you with its myriad of sensations. It’s not difficult to drive but also not a blunt instrument.
Priced at near Rs. 2 Cr, the 911 Carrera S is not cheap but as a driving experience it shames supercars costing twice as much. You do not need silly doors or an uncouth engine noise to make a great sports car as it’s about the little sensations and the small matter of bringing the driver in the midst of it all. The new 911 does that and that’s why it’s our sports car of 2019.