Category Archives: Porsche

Porsche’s flagship car for a drive – The 911 Turbo

Brendon and I take the keys to Porsches flagship 911 model, the Porsche 911 Turbo. We took a look at some of the details that make up the 911 range-topper, and take it for a hill-climb drive up our usual Macquarie Pass testing road. Along the way we test out the back seats, all the cubby and storage holes and see if we can as usual ‘get a person in the boot of a supercar’.

When this car’s turbo kicks in, its acceleration is as quick as the Lamborghini Gallardo I am not joking, but doesn’t sound half as good.


I have to say that for me personally I enjoy driving the 997 GT3 over this car as it feels a little more nimble and the steering a little more like my own Lotus in its direct connected feeling. But I also have to say the Turbo impressed me MORE than I thought it would. The Turbo’s feeling of being able to accelerate out of a corner earlier than you can with the GT3 (due to the Turbos 4wd) is a great feeling on the road.

Click the video below to play, or you can watch it in spiffy High Definition by going here and clicking the HD button: 

Lotus CUP 260 and Porsche GT3 drives

Well the drive of the Lotus Exige CUP 260 managed to come through and yep I was the only person allowed to drive it before it went to Targa Tasmania to compete, and bloody amazing it was to drive too. A pure race car for the road it felt, totally un-driveable for the road, totally un-practical, totally FUN!

 Mark in cup260

Queue cheesy smile for the camera!

My full article write-up of the drive is live on site right now right here: 2009 Lotus Exige Cup 260 First Test Drive

 Dean Evans & Simone Bachman – 2009 Lotus Exige Cup 260

The Cup 260 competing on Day 1 of the Targa Tasmania 2009

Jump 2 weekends on and I had booked a weekend (Friday night to Monday morning) with my dream car the Porsche GT3. This one was provided by the supercar club and it came in White with only a couple of small options thrown at it, perfect. I think the Porsche GT3 looks best in White, it looked great, if I was ever to buy one it would surely be in White, I was in love. For years now my dream car has been the Porsche GT3 & its rarer GT3 RS cousin. The proof, I have a large framed photo of a Orange GT3 RS on the Nurburgring ring on my hallways wall 🙂


But back to driving the Porsche GT3……. By far the best highlights of the car were its rock solid suspension feeling, totally direct steering feel and above all an engine you couldn’t fault and made me smile inside with every push of the accelerator.

With its 415HP the power from 4500rpm surged massively and was more than enough for the road. As you pressed your foot to the carpet, the rear would squat down and push into the road as it accelerated hard.

The sound from the flat 6 cylinder 3.6 litre race bred Porsche motorsport derived engine sounded like it was truly from the race track. It sounded just like what you hear when watching the Porsche Carrera cup races on TV. For the good reason too that it’s the same engine used in those cars, just in this road car form its carrying a bit more lard up front. Still 0-100kph in around 4.5 seconds cant be snuffed at.


I did find it a tad loud from the exhaust on the motorway sections of which I did a few 100km’s in the end. After returning the car the supercar club representative Mark, said it sounded like the exhaust baffles were jammed wide open, giving it full volume all the way. Still I agreed with him, I would of rather them jammed open than jammed shut 🙂

So GT3 or Audi R8, both the same pricing here in Australia? After driving them both just 1 month apart and both for more than 500km’s I would say the R8 just pips it to the post slightly, and I mean just slightly. The R8 has the advantages of the all-wheel drive grip on the road, much more advanced magnetic adjusting suspension and a V8 that delivers around the same power but crucially all through the rev-range.

I’d still take the GT3 in White though 🙂 Second hand one’s are now coming on the market for $190k, give it 12 more months and it could be attainable to the likes of Mr. average Joe blogs armed with a bit of finance like me 🙂

The next generation 911 is released – 3 letter marketing acronyms at the ready

From the sports car manufacturer that loves its 3 letter acronyms, Porsche bring you the new next generation 911 with Direct Fuel Injection technology & a Double-Clutch Gearbox with the most RIDICULES name ever ‘Doppelkupplung’ (its actally German for ‘double-clutch) as the biggest new features.

The full information was released to the world this week. In typical German style I have analysed with my White coat through all the Press release material, collected up as many 3 letter marketing acronyms from it as possible and brought you the changes. 


Here it comes the next generation 911

New features:

Direct fuel injection (DFI) – Injects fuel up to 120 bar directly into the cylinder this results in the Carrera now producing 254kw (345hp) and the Carrera S 283kw (385hp) These new performance figures is supersedes the previous generations outputs of 239 kw (325hp) and 261 kw (355 hp). Smoother torque delivery, better fuel economy and lower exhaust emissions are also a side benefit to the Porsche flat 6 engine now using DFI technology.



The newly tuned engine with added DFI’ness

Porsche Doppelkupplung (PDK) – uses a double clutch design simular to what’s found in cars like the VW R32 but with 7 forward gears. The new steering wheel has two thumb paddles (either left or right can be used), press either to shift up and pull to shift down. If you opt for this new PDK gearbox option, that’s if you can say it to the dealer without being laughed out of the showroom, it will shave 0.2 of a second off the 0-100kph times due to faster shifting speed compared to a manual.


The new Porsche Doppelkupplung (just say PDK it’s safer) gear stick  

Launch control – coupled with the PDK system, when enabled holds the engines RPM at 6,500 rpm for a perfect launch when the brake pedal is quickly released.

Dynamic cornering lights – As standard on all new 911 models are bi-xenon headlights previously this was an optional extra. As an extra now though are the dynamic cornering lights which actively swivel the lights left to right up to 15 degrees according to the tightness of the corner to light up the bend ahead. Woohoo safety that looks cool!

Improved Porsche Communication Module (PCM) – Now fitted as standard and with the screen size enlarged to 6.5-inch and also now touch screen. Full Bluetooth support, as an optional extra, all PCM functions can be controlled using voice control system. TV Tuner available as an option, capable of receiving digital TV broadcasts, switches off as you start moving.


The newly designed 6.5 inch widescreen PCM

BOSE Surround Sound System – made up of 13 loudspeakers (12 in the Cabriolet models) combined wattage 385 watts, includes an active subwoofer and central speaker, great for popping out to the car and watching a surround sound movie in the garage for when you’ve had a argument with the wife.

Universal Audio Interface – the central armrest storage console contains 3 connections of iPod, USB stick/MP3 player and stereo jack input, about time!


For the first time iPod and 911 see i to i

Seat Ventilation, heated steering wheel options – As the final  interior changes you can now optionally specify ventilated seats that can help cool down your bod on those hot sweaty peak of summer days and a heated steering wheel for those bitter cold winter mornings, no one likes a freezing steering wheel brrrrrrrrr.


Features carried over from the previous generation 911:

Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM)

Porsche Stability Management (PSM)

Sport Chrono Package Plus

Spring loaded automatically deployed roll-over bars (On the cabriolet model)

Tyre Pressure Monitoring System (TPM) – Although this has been redesigned to read tyre pressures in much quicker times now.


The visual differences

Porsche are pretty famous in the motoring press for not really playing with the look of the 911 through the generations and this new generation of 911 really isn’t breaking that mould. Ok you can look on this in two ways really, either they are just honing a nearly perfect look of their near 40 year old original design or they are just bloody lazy buggers and would rather be out driving their cars.

I have put together a few shots comparing the looks of the old & new models and as you can see at first glance there really looks like there’s very little difference, but there are some differences if you look closer.


The New 911 and old, very little changes

Taking the front we can see they have aligned the front indicator lights with the front air intake and also incorporated some daytime LED running lights which seems to be the fashion now since first started by Audi last year. On the rear the only change apparent is the slightly drawn out shape of the rear lights towards the ‘hips’ of the car and also showing LEDs are being used for the entire rear lights cluster.

Moving to the interior you can see the changes are very subtle also. The new 6.5 inch, wider touch screen display being the main change with a few small changes to the heater controls too.


The new 911 and old interior, same news here also

So there you go they have done it again and refined there 40 year old creation just that little bit more and Porsche purists will be very happy with the changes I feel. Still, some say the engine is still in the wrong place 🙂

No prices of the new models are marked for the Australian market yet but the European prices show that we’ll probably be paying the same as for the current 911 models new, that’s around $201k for the 911 Carrera and $227k for the Carrera S.

new911d.jpgThe four new flavours of 911, Carrera, Carrera Cabriolet,
Carrera S and the Carrera Cabriolet S

Now the rest of the 911 range will surely follow with these design and technological updates and most likely a few of their own. I have heard rumours that the new GT3 marked for release around early to mid 2009 will feature a sport/track tuned version of the dual-clutch PDK system for example, I can’t wait to see the new GT3’s spec’s when released and my deposit on the next generation GT3 RS will be riding on this.

Source: Porsche AU

Porsche Cayenne Turbo S – Porsche’s most powerful car ever

We all knew it would be coming soon, the range topping absurdly over the top powered Cayenne turbo S to take wife, kids and the family dog to near to warp inducing speeds. For if the previous range topping Cayenne Turbo was not enough for you with its 368 kW (500 hp) V8 engine and Acceleration from 0-100kph in 5.1s was not enough here comes a sledgehammer of performance figures.

The engineers from Leipzig have tweaked the Turbocharged Cayenne’s 4.8 litre V8 to now provide 404kW (550 hp) of power and an extra 50 Nm of torque through a modified exhaust and engine control improvements. This improvement of power and torque brings this latest 4×4 powerhouse SUV the title of Porsches most powerful production Porsche ever, increasing on the Porsche GT2’s power output by an additional 20hp.


Black painted grills and fan inlets the only front design changes

The exterior of this classy beast hasn’t really made any changes for the better, this won’t please the fan base of ‘Cayenne visual looks’ haters with no substantial changes being made to the Cayenne Turbo’s looks. As standard the 21 inch SportPlus alloy wheels are fitted at all four corners and at the rear a quad port aluminium exhaust system with sports silencers give the car a slightly more sporty roar under throttle pressure.

To stop all this 2.4 tonnes of luxury SUV in its turbo infueled pace are 6-piston 410 mm brake disks up front with 4-piston 370 mm’s at the rear. The carbon ceramic brakes as shown with brightly coloured Yellow brake callipers are an option as always on this Cayenne and susprisingly as a Porsche range-topper not fitted as standard.

The Turbo S comes complete with all of Porsche’s trick suspension technologies such as variable height air suspension, ride-control height and Porsches Active Suspension Management (PASM) system as found on all of Porsche’s sportier high-end, higher priced models.


From the rear a slight design change in the quad
exhausts are the only real difference

On the Interior most of the Cayenne’s option packs are now standard on this range topper, with sports seats with memory, aluminium door panels boasting  the ‘Turbo S’ naming, two-tone leather interior with exclusive colour choices, and Porsches great sat-nav system ‘Porsche Communication Multimedia System Management’ (PCM) all as standard.

With the Cayenne Turbo retailing at $215k, expect the Cayenne Turbo S to go on sale soon with a Porsche sized premium on top of that, my guess around the $240k -$255k mark.


In other Porsche news, the new Porsche Web Cinema area of the Porsche website has just been opened. This is a showcase of all of Porsche’s great online videos they have crafted which are some of the best in the business as far as car manufacturing marketing videos go. A few movies of Porsche’s historic motor racing are contained also along with some recent footage of Porsche attempt at the Transsyberia Rally 2008, check it out.


The new Porsche Web Cinema experince has opened its doors

Source: Porsche AU

Porsche Cayenne GTS – another gender confused car

Porsche Australia recently unveiled their new Cayenne GTS Prestige 4WD, adding to the existing lineup of Cayenne, Cayenne S and range topping Cayenne Turbo models. Im still wondering who actually goes out and buys these things in Australia though. I mean no one I know actually admits to wanting to go and buy one of these no-man-land 4WD’s stuck between the world of prestige and a raw 4WD off-roader but I see more and more of these things driving around the state capitals of Australia everyday.

The new Cayenne GTS sits between the top 2 models of the range between the S model with its 4,8l V8 and 405hp and the range topping massively expensive turbo model with its 4.8l twin-turbo V8 creating a massive 500hp and 700Nm of torque, enough to haul Tasmania back to the mainland Australia!  


Turbo nose and mouth lifted from the top spec Turbo model.

At $153 thousand dollars incl. GST it sits well below the price of the Turbo which costs an unimaginable $215k for a 4WD SUV, but for an extra $19k over the Cayenne S model what do you get extra in the Cayenne GTS.

Well V8 power plant has been tweaked, the engine now generates an extra 20hp but torque remains the same at 500Nm ?? (is that a typo in the press release??) acceleration from 6.8 seconds to 100kph is down to 6.1 seconds and top speed is raised from 250kpm to 253kph, all this from a revised intake manifold and engine management system wow! hmmmm not.


Twin Rear chrome tailpipes taken from the Turbo model.

Porsche say in designing the Cayenne GTS:

“Developing the new Cayenne GTS was an exercise in what we do best: more performance, more agility, a more immediate driving experience. In short: more sport – both visually and technically – and designed exclusively for the road.”

What this translates to is the optional Cayenne sports exhaust system, 24mm lower steel-sprung sports suspension with PASM (Porsche Active Suspension Management) and 21-inch Cayenne Sport wheels all fitted as standard. On the looks department the Cayenne GTS has all the visual trimmings of the Turbo model so if you ‘de-badge’ the car you could pretend to owning the Cayene Turbo model if that gives you one up on the Jones’s. A free optional roof spoiler on the roof tail edge adds the ‘bling’ for this new faster models looks too.


Interior doesn’t get any real highlights over the S model.

Back to where I started with this though, who actually buys Porsche Cayenne’s? If you want practicality you go for an old tough as boots Toyota Landcruiser, you want ‘cheap’ luxury you go for the ever more popular in Australia Ford Territory.

Who buys a Cayenne and actually takes them off-road like a 4WD is meant to? It seems only Porsche in their own motor journo driving PR adventures around the world to end up in various beautifully crafted Porsche sales brochures in showrooms around the world, certainly not the ones in Sydney.

Source: Porsche AU