Somebody Call 911, Party on the Dance Floor

Matthew Guy
by Matthew Guy
somebody call 911 party on the dance floor

Allow me that one, as I’ve always wanted to use it in a headline. Porsche has taken the wraps off its new 911, showing the eight-generation model to a fawning crowd in Los Angeles on the eve of this week’s auto show.

The exterior, well, that’s an unmistakably Porsche 911 profile at which to gaze. Hanging out behind the rear axle of the S and 4S models is a flat-six now making 443 horsepower.

Party, indeed.

That’s nearly as much as the last of the mighty air-cooled Turbo S models, fer chrissakes. Progress is wonderful. Porsche is using an improved injection process, as well as a new layout for the turbochargers and intercoolers, for improved engine efficiency. This helps explain how they were able to wring 23 more horsepower out of the 3.0-liter engine compared to the previous model.

Power is delivered by way of an eight-speed, PDK dual-clutch transmission. The company claims the rear-drive Carrera S needs just 3.5 seconds to reach 60 miles per hour from standstill. The 911 Carrera 4S Coupe, using all-wheel drive to dig its claws into the pavement, turns the same trick in only 3.4 seconds. Both those measures are about half a second quicker than the old car. Opt for the Sport Chrono Package, a roughly $2,000 option last year, to shave a further two-tenths off the run.

Wider wheel housings arch over 20-inch front wheels and 21-inch rears. Up front, the body has increased by 45 millimeters (1.8 inches) in width, making room for more front track. Congruently, the rear body width on both 911 Carrera S and 911 Carrera 4S has increased to 1,852 mm (72.9 in), the width of the previous 911 Carrera 4 and 911 GTS models.

You’ll no doubt notice the flush electric door handles, said to extend outward when needed like a mugger’s switchblade. However, the only thing you’re in danger of losing here is your license.

Between the new LED headlights, the frunk lid is contoured to recall early-gen 911s. The rear is dominated by a variable-position rear spoiler that’s wider than before. A seamless, elegant light bar brings a good dose of PORSCHEBLENDE to the party on both two- and all-wheel drive models. With the exception of its front and rear fascia, the 911’s entire outer skin is now made of aluminium (and yes, I intentionally spelled it that way, thankyouverymuch.)

Naturally, the interior is fitted with a larger touchscreen than before, in a trend that is common across segment and market. Drivers will now find a 10.9-inch display infused with what the company calls Porsche Communication Management. Don’t worry, purists: a quintet of buttons still exist directly south of the screen awaiting your programming. The PDK lever is described as a “haptic element.” The tachometer remains analog as well.

Porsche has developed something new in its so-called Wet Mode, which is included as standard equipment but has nothing to do with the 911’s effect on your girlfriend (don’t tell me you weren’t making the same joke in your own head). Rather, this function detects water on the road, preconditions the stability control and anti-lock brake systems accordingly, and warns the driver. Collision, night vision, and adaptive cruise systems are also available.

Prices for the 2020 Porsche 911 Carrera S open at $113,200. Adding all-wheel-drive pads that sum to $120,600. The company is taking orders for this rear-engined party right now, with deliveries starting next summer in this country.

[Images: Porsche]

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2 of 17 comments
  • ToddAtlasF1 ToddAtlasF1 on Nov 28, 2018

    I guess we finally found someone who admires the black plastic grills on the corners of new Honda Civic hatchbacks. Too bad it is someone calling the shots at Porsche.

  • CRConrad CRConrad on Jan 18, 2019

    Dang, how much better it looks in blue than in silver. Am I the only one who is (becoming) absolutely allergic to silver-coloured cars?

  • ScarecrowRepair Too much for too little, unless you treat it strictly as a toy.
  • DedBull Mk2 Jettas are getting harder to find, especially ones that haven't been modified within an inch of their life. I grew up in an 85 GLI, and would love to have one in as close to stock configuration as I could get. This car isn't that starting point, especially sitting 3-4 years in the NY dirt. It's a parts car at best, but there might still be money in it even at that price, if you are willing to take it down to absolutely nothing left.
  • MRF 95 T-Bird I bet it has some electrical gremlins as well. Nonetheless it might make an interesting El Camino pickup truck conversation with one of those kits.
  • GrumpyOldMan "A manual transmission is offered, as is a single-clutch auto. "What is a single clutch auto?
  • ToolGuy It is raining super-hard outside right now.