Just looking at the lines of the all-new Porsche 911, many will snidely remark that little appears new at all. The same basic shape. The same headlamps. Where’s the “new” in this new car?
First, it’s important to acknowledge that it’s supposed to look similar. In over 100 years of automotive history the 911 might just be the most recognizable and consistently exceptional vehicle ever made. Its design is a thing to be cultivated, not rethought. The Porsche 911 is a brand unto itself.
Drive the latest generation 911, heck, even just sit in it, and the improvements are dramatic. From an all-new Panamera-inspired interior that brings 911 luxury to a new level, to the overall feel of refinement. Sit in the previous generation 997 car, which we did for our video review, and a one year old Porsche with just a few thousand miles on it feels a decade old.
Gone is the vibration that buzzes through the cabin. In its place is the comfort of a luxury sedan. Gone is the drone of the exhaust. In its place is near silence, which, thankfully, can still be amped up via a Sport button on the center console. And gone is the forearm-toning hydraulic steering. In its place is a new electric power steering unit.
Purists may morn these losses. And yet, outperforming the old 911 by a significant margin, while delivering a new level of daily driven, it’s hard to object to this type of progress. About the only item we truly miss is the old steering setup, less because of nearly insignificant (and possibly imaged) losses in steering feel when performance driving, and more because of the satisfaction the old heavy unit gives. Looking back, it’s perhaps the one item more than anything else that made the old car give you the feeling that you are in control of such a fine German sports car.
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