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Porsche 911 Turbo and Turbo S review – still the ultimate everyday supercars?

The Porsche 911 Turbo, traditionally the ultimate indomitable everyday supercar, might seem at risk from the latest crop of increasingly rounded rivals and new turbocharged entry level 911’s, but the Turbo’s appeal is much like that of a black Armani suit; expensive, sophisticated and timeless.

The 911 Turbo was first released in the 1970’s, but has evolved from the edgy, intimidating sports car it was into the polished and sophisticated everyday supercar of today. Now in its 991.2 guise, the 911 Turbo is as capable and organ-pummellingly fast as ever.

Launched in 2016, the new Turbo is distinguished from earlier cars via a set of redesigned LED light strips in the bumper, fresh wheel designs, revised tail lights and vertical slats on the engine cover (a nod to past 911 models). Available as before with PDK only, the new Turbo has more substance than ever, but it also has more rivals to compete against, so is it still king of its domain?

991.2 Porsche 911 Turbo S - profile tracking

Porsche 911 Turbo: in detail 

Performance and 0-62mph time Many have tried to out-launch the 911 Turbo, and most still continue to fail. The fastest Turbo S will hit 62 in a claimed 2.9 seconds, but in typical Porsche fashion, it’s a conservative figure.

Engine and gearbox More a tool than a beating heart, the Turbo’s engine possesses a different character to the now also turbocharged base 911’s. This is also now a PDK only zone.

Ride and Handling All-wheel drive, rear-wheel steering and active engine mounts are just the tip of a technological iceberg. In terms of capability, few, if any, match the Turbo for speed across the ground.

MPG and running costs  31mpg is quoted by Porsche, although drive with any vigour and that will be a optimistic figure to match.

Interior and tech Classically 911, the interior recently benefited from an upgraded infotainment system and Porsche’s slick new steering wheel. Like the exterior, it lacks the wow-factor of rivals though.

Design  The 911 is a dynasty that somehow doesn’t date. The design is typically conservative, but then that’s probably why it never really dated in the first place.   

991.2 Porsche 911 Turbo S - rear tracking

Prices, specs and rivals:

The Porsche 911 Turbo is available in two flavours, base Turbo and ‘Turbo S’ spec, and each of those is available in coupe or cabrio form. The standard Turbo is priced from just over £128k with the fabric roofed Cabriolet model demanding a £9k premium (£137k). 

As standard, the Turbo is pretty much fully-loaded with comfort and convenience features, with 20-inch wheels, a full leather interior, adaptive sport seats, full LED headlights and Porsche’s upgraded PCM infotainment system. 

For a substantial £19k premium, the £147k Turbo S builds on the standard car’s kit by offering carbon ceramic brakes, centre-lock alloy wheels and Porsche Dynamic Chassis Control on top of the engine upgrades.

The options list is typically vast, but it’s mostly personalisation options with varying degrees of tastefulness. In the 991.2 upgrade, the bright Miami Blue paint made a welcome reappearance on the options list, as have some fetching ‘Fuchs’ like alloy wheel options.

In terms of rivals, few are able to match the dynamic abilities of the 911 Turbo, but that doesn’t mean the Turbo is the automatic choice. Starting within £1000 of each other, the base Turbo has the Audi R8 V10 and McLaren 540C to compete with, both raising the stakes by offering a mid-engine layout and arguably more interesting power units.

The Audi also counters the Turbo Cabrio with the excellent Spyder, although McLaren has yet to produce a drop-top 540C. If you’re looking for something a little more extreme, the Audi R8 Plus (£138k) and McLaren 570S (£143k) both undercut the Turbo S. 

991.2 Porsche 911 Turbo S - front static

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