Have we hit peak supercar here? A car that you can use every day, one that does 0-60mph in under 3 seconds and is unfazed by anything you throw at it. Ladies and gentleman, behold the 992 Porsche 911 Turbo S.
The sheer pace of evolution in the supercar realm is something that never ceases to amaze me. It was while executing my umpteenth hard launch in the Turbo S, that it hit me just how absolutely crazy this car is. Crazy in a good way.
The 911 Turbo has evolved from a vehicle that was a real challenge (read: danger) to drive fast, to the epitome of the everyday supercar. It doesn’t matter if you use it to commute, get your groceries, drop your kids off at school or do laps at Fuji Speedway – the 992 Turbo S is unable to put a foot wrong.
I recently spent a week with a Turbo S Cabriolet – the party version that’s so sure of its abilities, it can do it all without a roof.
After a few days with the car in Tokyo, using it as my daily driver, I set off over Tokyo Bay and into the beautiful Chiba countryside. It’s not every day that I have a car like the 911 Turbo S at my disposal, so I really wanted to experience it as a new owner likely would.
The car’s natural home is the highway; it has the ability to cruise at any speed, returning semi-decent fuel consumption figures and generally being comfortable.
On the latter, it’s amazing how much comfort Porsche manages to inject into these cars. You’re always aware that there is a perfectly-honed sports car underneath you, but the fact that you ride on 20-inch and 21-inch wheels front and rear respectively, yet there’s still an element of refinement in it all, speaks volumes for the work that has gone into the fine tuning.
However, the moment you find the right sort of road, that changes.
In a very video-game-like manner, you engage Sport mode and everything around you gets sharper. When these sort of drive modes were first introduced in cars they felt a little gimmicky to me, but in the Porsche it really is like having a few distinctly different versions of the same car in one.
And what does 641hp being deployed through an 8-speed dual-clutch transmission and all-wheel drive feel like? Violent first of all – the 800Nm of torque from the twin-turbocharged 3.7-litre flat-six engine makes sure of that. There’s so much urgency in the way boost – and thus acceleration – picks up. It’s not instant mind you, but once it hits it’s explosive.
Through the corners the Turbo S is untouchable. It may lack the surgical precision of a GT3, but it makes up for it with unsurpassable traction and grip. You need to drive it with respect though, because during weight transfers and on slippery surfaces the Turbo S will wiggle its tail. I really love this about the car; it’s not dumb-fast, but it still has a little 930 Turbo ‘Widowmaker’ feel about it.
The 911 Turbo S stops extremely well too, thanks to the Porsche Ceramic Composite Brake (PCCB) setup as standard. This system comprises of 10-piston aluminium monoblock calipers and 420mm ceramic composite brake discs at the front and a 4-piston/390mm package at the rear.
As someone who drives a near on 30-year-old 911, I’m so impressed by how the current model looks and feels.
Comparing my car’s interior to this one is night and day; the 911 has matured beautifully. From that classic purity of the 964/993 interior to the 991’s refined and well-appointed cabin, the 992 has only further evolved things.
The win for me is that anyone would be able to tell it’s a 911. There’s that underlying feel about it, yet it’s mixed with all the modern tech you would ever need.
The much-criticized, stubby shaver-like gear selector may seem strange at first, but after a few days it blends in and you never notice it again.
The Sport Chrono stopwatch atop of the dash is the only thing that still looks out of place to me. I just don’t get it and probably never will.
The red leather option was a wise choice for this press car; it pops in pictures and brings the message of quality across far better than if it were black. I found the leather itself to be a little too delicate though. It’s very easy to mark, and if you have young kids like me you’d probably have a heart attack every time they get out of the rear seat and scuff their shoes against the backs of the front seats.
Exterior design is much like the interior – a great fusion of classic and modern. Is it just me, or do 911s always manage to look just as good in drop-top form as they do a coupé?
My only criticism would be directed towards the front bumper, as I would have loved to see more aggression here. To me, the fitted bumper looks a tad bland and the angular sections of the lower grills don’t seem to fit. In comparison, the GT3 looks spot on.
Oh, and those LED matrix headlights are like having a midday sun-like level of light at night. 964, keep dreaming!
As the afternoon wore on in Chiba, it was time to head back.
The return trip to Tokyo was just as fun. It took it easy, let Apple CarPlay do its thing, and left the transmission in auto, surfing the 800Nm wave of torque that is always in waiting.
One final photo on the coast was a must.
Having experienced the all-round ability of the 992 Turbo S, I have to say that it’s the perfect companion for central Tokyo.
It carries the essence of 911s of old, but is right up to date in every other way. I really don’t think other supercars are able to match the 911 when it comes to this.
At its price point though, it is truly a dream car. That Turbo badge really lives up to its lineage.
On my last day with the car, I hit up the Apple Store in Ginza.
And then on to a quick meet-up with a few car friends.
I experienced the Taycan very soon after the 992 Turbo S, but they are both such perfect executions of the cars they each need to be, that it’s simply impossible to choose between them.
But ask me in the comments and I’ll tell you which one I’d keep and why.
Dino Dalle Carbonare