September 15, 2005

2006 Porsche 911 Carrera 4 & 4S

Ask Walter Röhrl to describe the driving dynamics of the new Carrera 4, and he'll tell you, "It's like a train," cornering as if on rails. For sure, Röhrl knows a bit about handling. A two-time World Rally champion and four-time Monte Carlo Rally winner, Röhrl is also a proponent of all-wheel drive, making him the perfect spokesman for the new Porsche Carrera 4, which was introduced to the automotive press in Monaco, just a few switchbacks away from the infamous Col de Turini (Stage 12 of the Monte Carlo Rally), where we got to evaluate the new models.


06:27 AM in Porsche | Permalink

June 21, 2005

Best of the Best

The Ferrari F430 was chosen as the top sports car for the 2005 Robb Report 17th annual Best of the Best special edition.

Ferrari's new F430, a mid-engine sports car powered by a 490-horsepower 4.3-liter V8 engine, was top choice in the Sports Car category. Paul Dean, Robb Report editor-at-large, described the F430 as "the finest Ferrari ever built, and maybe the world's best sports car ever."

The Aston Martin DB9 was named the Robb Report's 2005 Car of the Year, and was chosen as "Best of the Best" in the GTs and Coupes category. According to Dean the DB9 is "the finest of the new Aston Martins built to whisper of past glories without displaying an obsession with them."

"Best of the Best" in the sedan category was the Merecedes-Benz CLS55 AMG, the high-performance AMG version of the new sedan with a coupe-like profile, powered by a 469-horsepower supercharged 5.4-liter V8 engine. Brett Anderson, Robb Report senior vice president of editorial, summarized the CLS55 as the "perfect amalgamation of style, strength, subtlety and pure mind-numbing fun."

In the Sport-Utility Vehicles category, the new Land Rover Range Rover Sport was the top choice—the first Land Rover with an emphasis on handling and on-road performance. Range Rover Sport's off-road capability "remains an industry standard," according to Dean, "and the on-road performance is designed to match and maybe even surpass that of BMW's X5, Porsche's Cayenne Turbo and any member of Mercedes' M-Class."

06:08 AM in BMW, Ferrari, Mercedes-Benz, News, Porsche | Permalink

April 07, 2005

Porsche 911 Carrera Cabriolet

When the first water-cooled 911 appeared in 1998, it represented the ultimate taming of the once wild rear-engined Porsche sports car. With ample cockpit space, benign handling, and greatly reduced engine noise, that model, known as the 996, had very broad appeal. But among Porsche's fervently faithful were many who failed to see the allure of the 996's licked-clean bodywork with the fried-egg look-alike headlights, the fissured interior, and the boredom that sets in during electronically assisted driving. The new 997 911, introduced last fall, has gone a long way toward addressing these complaints, and Porsche has now introduced the convertible version.


Get more info.

06:22 AM in Porsche | Permalink

February 24, 2005

It’s-All-About-Me Roadsters

The jury deliberates over four new convertibles on our most-selfish list.

We haven’t officially put Ayn Rand on our must-read list, but we have been lately mulling a few of her principles, particularly the one about the virtue of selfishness. Should you suddenly be handed a fistful of dollars, for example, would you buy a new bus for the church or head straight to the nearest Porsche dealer?

No hands, please, it’s a secret ballot. Those of you in the latter category—and you know who you are—may want to divert some of your overtaxed attention to the following pages. Upon them we have lashed down and dissected four of the newest, fleetest, it’s-all-about-me convertibles in the $45,000 to $60,000 range, a group we regularly check in on for reasons that are, of course, selfish.

Featured in This Comparo
Chevrolet Corvette
Chrysler Crossfire SRT-6
Mercedes-Benz SLK350
Porsche Boxster S


06:07 AM in Chevrolet, Convertibles, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche | Permalink

February 23, 2005

Driving Porsche's Supercar

Along with Ferrari's Enzo, the long-awaited Porsche Carrera GT is an amazing start to a new era of supercars. The Enzo may have beaten the Carrera GT to market--the Porsche only went on sale this past January--but Porsche clearly wanted to take enough time to develop the $440,000 GT and show the other car makers how it's done. Called Project S1 internally, the new Carrera GT was to be Porsche's next factory effort for Le Mans in 2000. Then race plans were dropped, but S1 went forward as a street car. The Carrera GT production version was unveiled at last in March 2003 in Geneva.

Cut to the Gross Dölln, an ex-Russian Army base in the German hinterlands along the Polish border. Runway No. 1--the one I am to use for high-speed runs--is two miles long. Russian Tu-95 bombers and MiG fighters used these runways up to and for a while after the fall of the Berlin Wall in November 1989. Today, here on the tarmac are parked three shimmering, $440,000 Porsche Carrera GTs--one red, one black and one silver.


06:03 AM in Porsche | Permalink

January 26, 2005

200 MPH Club: 2005 Ford GT, Lamborghini Murcielago, Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren, and Porsche Carrera GT

We bring the Ford GT, the Lamborghini Murciélago, the Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren, and the Porsche Carrera GT together in one place. You're about to learn exactly what it's like to live with the four fastest cars on sale in America.

You've devoured every word the automotive press has written about them. You've memorized their almost unbelievable technical specifications, marveled over their futuristic constructions, pored over cutaways and power curves, and tried to get your pointy little heads around performance numbers that seem nearly incomprehensible for roadgoing production cars.

Some of you actually have plunked down the suitcase full of stacked and banded C-notes for your place on the short list for your favorite, and we suspect that more than one of you have ordered all four.


06:25 AM in Ford, Lamborghini, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche | Permalink

December 09, 2004

Porsche to build in US?

With the dollar hitting record lows against the euro and precious little sign of significant reversal anytime soon, making more vehicles in the US or NAFTA region makes increasingly compelling economic sense for European vehicle exporters with substantial US sales. Could Porsche be the latest manufacturer to seriously consider US assembly options? Wiedeking may like to stress the importance of the ‘Made in Germany’ label on Porsche cars, but there is already assembly activity taking place outside Germany. Boxsters are assembled in Finland (still inside the eurozone) by contract assembler Valmet, an arrangement arrived at some years ago due to capacity constraints at Zuffenhausen. It’s not something Porsche shouts from the rooftops.

But when that contract nears its end – I think it may be soonish – then what about shifting some assembly to the US? And where is that possible fourth model line to be built?

Maybe another contract assembler type solution would make sense, though some folks at Volkswagen may be interested in a plant in the US, shared with Porsche perhaps. Next Cayenne/Touareg could be an obvious candidate for US build. But would Porsche’s brand image suffer if the Volkswagen association were too strong? Volkswagen’s image in the US ain’t great these days. That actually may be a more important consideration for the Porsche brand than any perceived dilution of its Germanness due to US manufacture. European premium brands appear to be able to withstand that, at certain levels anyway. Ask BMW or Mercedes-Benz.

01:03 PM in Porsche | Permalink

October 29, 2004


The Porsche USA front-page has a new design built on XHTML Strict, as well as a new RSS feed.

06:55 AM in Porsche | Permalink