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Poll: Which 2017 Porsche 911 are you most excited about?

If you thought 2016 was a good year for new Porsche 911s, you’ve seen nothing yet. Next year is set to provide a bumper crop of new Neunelfers, bolstering the 991 line-up across the board.

At the top of the range, the Widowmaker is expected to return in all its forced induction fury, while the facelifted Porsche 991 GT3 is set to gain a manual gearbox. Limited edition enthusiasts will be satisfied too by the potential return of the Sport Classic and Speedster.

Along with a GTS variant of the turbocharged 991.2 Carrera, it’ll be hard to know where to focus in 2017. Therefore, for our final poll of the year, we want to know which Neunelfer has got you the most excited:


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Porsche 993 Turbo: The Prototype

“It’s a 1993 993 Turbo,” I was told over the phone. For a second, that crucial year of production didn’t register as erroneous. “Wait a minute,” I said. “You say it’s a 1993 model year, so surely you mean it’s a 964 Turbo, right?” I asked. “You better come out to Germany,” was the candid reply.

It’s not often at Total 911 that we’ll swap countries on the mere whim of a phone call but in the interim, I’d seen evidence to prove the person on the end of the line was correct.

And so, a couple of days later, I found myself just outside Frankfurt, stood in front of what is undeniably a Porsche 993-generation Turbo – and a very special one at that.

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On reflection, the last air-cooled Turbo was a pivotal sports car for Zuffenhausen. Though its very name still carried huge gravitas among the 911 fraternity, technologically speaking, the Turbo’s star was in danger of fading.

This, even after a wholly credible, 15-year 930 project, which saw the car increase in engine capacity, gain an intercooler and Motronic engine management (plus a catalytic converter, dear American friends) as well as a slick, five-speed gearbox from Getrag.

Thanks to the culling of Porsche’s ‘965’ project, the subsequent 3.3-litre 964 Turbo of 1991 was merely a face lift, essentially the last 930’s beating heart fitted in the 964 Turbo shell, albeit with some small updates.

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Porsche’s second 964 Turbo effort was altogether more pronounced though, the engine a blown variant of the 3.6-litre M64 unit found in the 964 Carrera, with ABS, M030 Sports suspension and a rear axle borrowed from the 964 RS all standard equipment.

Though the specification was impressive, it still fell short of what was being proffered from the stillborn 965 project – and the Turbo’s reputation for being notoriously tricky to drive remained.

By contrast, the arrival of the 993 Turbo saw a new dawn for Porsche’s Turbo moniker. A new multi-link rear suspension with five links per corner was introduced; named LSA (Lightweight Stable Agile), the system greatly helped with the reduction of dreaded lift-off oversteer, which had blighted Neunelfers (blown or not) in decades gone by.

To read our prototype Porsche 993 Turbo test drive in full, pick up Total 911 issue 147 in store today. Alternatively, order your copy online for home delivery, or download it straight to your digital device now.

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Top five Porsche 911 drives of 2016 – Josh’s picks

After getting behind the wheel of some truly incredible Porsche 911s in 2015, I was worried that my top five this year wouldn’t hit the same high standard. However, a look back over the last 12 months of Neunelfer motoring has shown that I had nothing to worry about. In ascending order, here is my 2016 top five:

5) Porsche 991.2 Carrera
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You may remember that, leading up to the 991.2’s launch, I was pretty uneasy about the reality of a turbocharged Porsche 911 Carrera. However, getting behind the wheel of the 991.2 Carrera for the first time at the start of the year allayed all of my fears.

The chassis is even more accomplished than the Gen1 and the 3.0-litre flat six is a masterstroke, delivering plenty of punch without the usual turbo lag. I even enjoy the more nuanced soundtrack.

4) Porsche 993 Carrera RS
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The 964 Carrera RS managed to make my top five in 2015 but, after putting one head-to-head with its successor for an air-cooled twin test in issue 140, it was clear that the Porsche 993 Carrera RS is the superior car.

The 3.6-litre flat six is a genuine firecracker but it’s the chassis that is the standout star. I’ve not driven an air-cooled Porsche 911 that has felt so sharp or precise before or since.

3) Porsche 911 Carrera RSR IROC
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Driving any super rare Porsche 911 is always an unforgettable experience but getting into the driver’s seat of a genuine IROC RSR for the latest issue’s head-to-head has to be right up there in my list of top moments ever.

If sitting where the likes of Peter Revson and George Follmer once sat wasn’t surreal enough, the sound from the 3.0-litre engine, piped through an unsilenced exhaust system, now permanently resonates inside my skull.

2) Porsche 993 Turbo
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For nearly three years, the chance to drive a 993 Turbo evaded my grasp. However, when I finally got the chance to drive the last air-cooled Turbo (courtesy of Paul Stephens) it didn’t disappoint.

Like many 993s, it was the perfect blend of analogue sports car and technological tour de force. Unlike the 993 C4S, the Turbo doesn’t suffer from an excess of understeer and the throttle response from the twin turbo flat six is simply phenomenal. It truly deserves its new five-star rating.

1) Porsche 911 Carrera 3.0 RS
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Forget the 2.7 RS. If you’re in the market for a classic Rennsport then it’s all about the Porsche 911 Carrera 3.0 RS. From its dynamics to its dynamism, everything about the 1974 RS’s is sharper and more polished than its more famous predecessor.

The chassis is almost telepathic in its ability to transmit your inputs to the road while the engine fills in the 2.7-litre unit’s torque gaps without losing that inimitable Rennsport fizz. And its styling is so unabashedly Seventies in its execution. What’s not to love? Now to search down the back of the sofa for a spare £1 million…

Which Porsche 911s have you most enjoyed driving in 2016? Join the debate in the comments below or tweet us @Total911.

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Nine gorgeous Porsche 911 Carrera 2.7 RS details

While many Porsche 911 Carrera 2.7 RSs now languish in air-conditioned garages, the example featured in the latest issue has lived an active life, participating in numerous races and rallies over the years.

Top Total 911 snapper, Ali Cusick captured some stunning shots of this regularly exercised Rennsport and, while we didn’t really need any excuse, we thought that was reason enough to share this gorgeous gallery of details:

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To read our full test drive of this regularly exercised Rennsport, pick up Total 911 issue 147 in store today. Alternatively, order your copy online for home delivery, or download it straight to your digital device now.

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Video: 2016 FIA World Endurance Championship season review

 

If the 2016 FIA World Endurance Championship provided Porsche with the same triumvirate of successes as last year, the route to this season’s titles was definitely more fraught.

Thanks to significantly improved challenges from both Audi and Toyota, the Porsche 919 Hybrids certainly didn’t have it all their own way in 2016 (despite winning six of the nine races between the two LMP1 entries).

 

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From an astounding 18th overall victory at the 24 Hours of Le Mans to a second consecutive world title, Porsche’s 2016 triumphs invariably went right down to the wire this year.

Thanks to this quick-fire video from the factory (complete with some great behind the scenes footage), you can relieve Porsche Team’s incredible FIA WEC campaign, perfect if there’s currently a motorsport-shaped whole in your life during the winter break.

For more of the latest and best Porsche films, check out our dedicated video section now.

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