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911 Targa 4 3.4 – 350 ch

Video: A history of the Porsche 911 Targa

 

In 2017, the Porsche 911 Targa – the original open top Neunelfer – will reach its 50th birthday, a remarkable milestone for a model that was originally devised to meet safety regulations that were, ultimately, never implemented.

To celebrate the upcoming anniversary, we’ve decided to look back over the Targa’s half a century of history in our latest video, taking you through the evolution of the model from 1967 right through to the latest 991.2 Targa 4S.

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Our five-minute flick also stars a 1974 Porsche 911 Targa from esteemed specialist, Canford Classics, the original impact bumper iteration showing how the latest open-top Neunelfers has both changed and been inspired by Zuffenhausen’s iconic roll hoop design.

We’ve put the two idiosyncratic roof systems to the test too and, if you missed our road trip with the 991.2 version in Total 911 issue 142, Features Editor, Josh gives you his opinion from behind the wheel of the new 911 Targa to see if turbocharging has improved the alfresco driving experience.

For more of the latest and best Porsche 911 videos, check out our dedicated film section now.

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2014 Porsche 911 Carrera Targa Top Operation

While we don’t normally discuss too many brand new cars here, we felt the new 2014 Carrera Targa was a worthy topic for today’s general discussion. We have always been huge fans of the 1970’s and 80’s 911 Targas, despite what the purists have said about it’s rear glass design disrupting the 911 hard top’s classic silhouette. Yada yada, right? We dig ’em. Well, yesterday Porsche re-introduced the traditional Targa hoop’ed 991 Carrera at the 2014 Detroit Auto Show, but with an over the top (yes, intentional cheesy pun) automated mechanism to operate it’s on and off removal. Thus, the beginning of our own personal dismay and confusion diatribe, and reiteration yet once again of our overall general woes concerning Porsche’s path since the original was first released… It’s operation appears no more complicated than a convertible top’s, but why use all of this unnecessary hoopla (yes, another intentional cheesy pun) just to remove a roof panel that could easily be taken off by just lifting it manually? In addition, how much weight does this whole mechanism add to the car? See where we are going with this?…Where have Porsche’s priorities gone? We have a lot of questions regarding the luxo-boat direction […]

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Evolution of the Porsche 911 Targa

There was always an open-top Porsche: Ferry’s first model was an open barchetta and if production realities soon dictated a closed design, it was only a couple of years before a convertible 356 appeared.

This was a vital model, especially in the US, for which Porsche’s gung-ho distributor Max Hoffman persuaded Zuffenhausen to build the Speedster, as featured in issue 128 of Total 911. By the late 1950s, consideration of the 356’s successor was in full swing at Porsche.

Between the competing designs of Erwin Komenda (Porsche’s long standing body engineer who saw himself as carrying the beacon for the late Professor Porsche), Ferry’s son Butzi who represented the first generation of automobile stylists, and Ferry’s own preferences, little thought was given to an open car.

Original 911 Targa

Moreover, high development costs of the 901 Coupé meant there was little in the way of budget left to invest in a convertible model.

The other concern at that time was the controversy in America, stirred up by Ralph Nader, about whether car manufacturers were putting users’ lives at risk with fundamentally unsafe cars.

In particular, the Chevrolet Corvair (a flat six rear engine design) had been singled out, as had the VW Microbus. In the general uncertainty, it was also unclear whether the US authorities were going to ban open cars. It was dissuasive enough: Porsche would develop an alternative to the Cabriolet which would be the birth of the Targa.

Porsche 991 Targa

Porsche’s experiments with open prototypes had already demonstrated that some sort of ‘roll hoop’ did manage to restore rigidity. Therefore, the ‘alternative cabrio’ would have this roll hoop and it became a question of what it would look like and how it would be incorporated.

Schröder, who had built 356 cabrios at Karmann, said that the most important detail at this stage was “to make this roll bar look right.” Having agreed on the aesthetics, they could then strengthen it as much as necessary.

To read the rest of our Porsche 911 Targa history, pick up issue 130 in store now. Alternatively, order your copy online for home delivery, or download it straight to your digital device.

Porsche 911 Targas

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Porsche : La 911 Targa restylée se fait surprendre

Fin juillet, Porsche nous présentait une galerie complète « façon spyshots de qualité » de la nouvelle 911 restylée. Nous pouvions découvrir des images des versions Coupé et Cabriolet mais il manquait la toujours très séduisante version Targa.  Nous confrères de Worldcarfans réparent cet oubli et propose les premières images de la 911 Targa restylée 2016 qui sera […]
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Spyshots : Porsche 911 Targa

targaDéjà révélée via des « spyshots officiels », la version restylée de la Porsche 911 sera complétée par une version Targa qui s’illustre ici en images. Un prototype de Porsche 911 Targa a été aperçu avant son officialisation qui devrait intervenir incessamment sous peu ( toutes les photos à voir en entier sur ce lien ). Comme pour […]

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