Porsche 911 Carrera 4S review, test drive
28th Mar 2013 8:46 pm
We get behind the wheel of the all-new Porsche 911 Carrera 4S and give it an extensive road test review.
If you mentioned Porsche to the average Indian, you could forgive them for thinking of the Cayenne. The big SUV is, after all, the best-selling Porsche in the country by a huge margin, and the one you are most likely to see on our roads. But Porsche, at its core, is a sportscar maker, and its illustrious history revolves around one car – the 911. This latest model – codenamed 991 – may be the sixth generation of 911 worldwide, but it’s only the second generation to go on sale here in India. But, as they say, it’s never too late and we now have with us what is arguably the most technically advanced iteration of the 911 and crucially in all-weather, all-wheel-drive form. With proper aftersales backup from Porsche. Let’s see how this legendary sportscar gets along in India.
The Porsche 911 remains unequivocally one of the most involving cars to drive and, at the limit, can be one of the most demanding as well. It doesn’t flatter the faint-hearted with its rearward weight bias, but once you understand the physics of its rear-biased weight distribution, it can be hugely rewarding. This is a car in which you need to build up speed progressively through corners. It’s best to finish braking before you turn in and then feed in the throttle gently upto the apex before flooring it as you exit. Under hard acceleration, you will feel the front go light before the 911 sits down on its wide haunches. The grip is simply astonishing and this can actually be measured by the ‘G-force’ meter displayed in the instrument cluster. Lifting off or braking mid-corner unsettles the 911, but the all-wheel-drive system and sophisticated stability programme will ensure that you don’t swap ends. The ride is pretty impressive for a sports car and Porsche’s PASM adaptive damping system (standard on the S models) must get credit here.
With four new vertical chassis sensors, the PASM is capable of making the 911 as supple as a family saloon whilst cruising, and instantly stiffening the dampers the moment you barrel into a fast bend. Also remarkable is the suspension’s ability to absorb bumps and maintain composure over broken tarmac. In Sport mode, you can feel jolts more prominently and body movements are sharper but never to the point of being unduly harsh. Even the ground clearance is generous enough to tackle most speedbreakers.