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Report: 2/3rds Of Porsche 911 GT3s Sold In The US Are Ordered With A Manual Transmission

Porsche representatives at the Geneva Motor Show told Motor Trend’s Jethro Bovingdon (see tweet below) that about 66% of US 911 GT3 buyers are optioning their cars with Porsche’s exquisite 6-speed 911R-derived manual gearbox. In order to confirm that this was indeed the truth, we reached out to Porsche Cars North America product spokesperson Frank Weismann for official confirmation of the statement, and this was his response:

I can confirm that the overall take rate of the manual on the 2018 911 GT3 in the US is currently around 2/3rds. It started around 50% when we introduced the car last year and has been trending upward. Also due to the introduction of the Touring Package, which is only available with the manual.

As true believers of manually-engaged gears, we are excited about this shift (excuse the pun) in buying habits among American enthusiasts. While Porsche’s DoppelKupplungsgetriebe is always going to be the quicker gearbox for pure acceleration numbers and race track lap times, the manual gearbox helps provide a much more driver-focused experience. While other sports car companies like Lamborghini and Ferrari have completely ditched manual gearboxes, it’s heartening to see Porsche sticking with the manual for folks like us who enjoy using a clutch pedal and a gear lever in our sporty driving. Now if only we could convince Porsche to sell a GT3 RS with a stick, we’d really jump for joy.

 

Way to go, GT3 buyers! You’re proving that there is still a place for manual gearboxes in the world. Faith in humanity restored, as the internet used to say.

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Ed speak: why I love PDK

There was a time when Porsche’s automatic transmission came a distant second to the manual variety. Just think of the 993: while the manual transmission offered a gloriously positive throw and impressive pull through all six gears, the four-speed Tiptronic option was simply archaic, even for the time. I recall the amusement of driving a Tiptronic 993 Carrera earlier this year, where in manual override I could click ‘up’ on the steering wheel’s gear selector and then count two seconds before an almighty shunt forwards would signal the engagement of a higher gear. The experience wasn’t pleasant. But how things have changed. Porsche’s new PDK transmission is crisp, fluid, and oh-so intelligent – so much so that it’s the only gearbox Porsche will offer you on a 991 GT3, Turbo or Turbo S. The revelation was met with outcry from purists last year, who said part of the 911’s original soul had been needlessly jettisoned. But is this really the case? I think not.

Swapping pedals for paddles offers a different driving experience, not a worse one.

Swapping pedals for paddles offers a different driving experience, not a worse one.

The fact is, the Porsche 911 has been clad with technological driver aids and advancements for some time now. The age of driver and car being harmonised purely by a mechanical engine and a trio of pedals have long since passed. Pleasingly, this uptake in technology on an automobile has also coincided with sportscars getting much faster – and safer. This trend for technology first started by ABS was accelerated by the introduction of PSM on the 911 Carrera 4 in 1999, which was a joint venture between Porsche and Bosch where sensors fed information to the ABS system to electronically brake individual wheels. Rolled out across all 911 models from 2002, PSM could also control engine speed thanks to electronic throttle control. Quintessential driving? No, but PSM was undoubtedly successful in the evolution of the sports car, and remains on the 911 to this day.

Purists say PDK isn't as much fun as the manual, though the driver of this 991 GT3 may well beg to differ.

Purists say PDK isn’t as much fun as the manual, though the driver of this 991 GT3 may beg to differ.

Since then, PTM, PTV, PASM, and even Porsche Active Aerodynamics have all been positively received as technological advancements to the 911, the intelligent sportscar for the intelligent driver. So why is there an indifference to PDK? In town, PDK is your best friend, saving your left leg from a glut of ardous work without reward. On the track, PDK makes the car smoother, which makes you faster. Of course, a different driving style needs to be administered here, which is where the dislike comes from, but that’s all part of the challenge. On a more level racing platform in terms of competition, further miniscule, intricate attention to detail will be vital to become a champion of a tighter field of cars (991 paddle-shift Carrera Cup drivers have already admitted as much).

paddleshift

With paddleshift now also on GT3 Cup cars, Supercup driver and Total 911 columnist Ben Barker says changing gears with your fingertips is positive, allowing the driver to focus on driving.

In a contemporary world where the sports car driver demands the ultimate in modern engineering for even miniscule refinement of those lap times, a true driver will be thankful for any extra advancement – given here in that you can now focus your vision exactly on where you’re placing those front tyres at all times. Sure, manual gear changing still offers what can loosely be categorised as traditional driving (though a 991 is still some way off the experience of an original short wheelbase, pre-impact bumper 911 of the Sixties, for example), but the cars, just like the times, are totally different. Porsche has adapted quite remarkably to the continued evolution of the sports car, so now it is us who must adapt to the new era of sports car precision –­ starting with an adulation of PDK.
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eBay Deal of the Week: 1989 Porsche 928 GT

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Before the Aston Martin Vanquish, before the Ferrari FF and before any of BMW’s M-Cars, there was this guy — the Porsche 928. It debuted in 1977 as a replacement to the 911, but instead of taking out its older brother, it decided to carve out its own road as one of the greatest GT cars in automotive history. This stunning example of the 1989 Porsche 928 GT is currently for sale on eBay and is a ride that any collector would be happy to own. The GT differentiates itself from other 928′s by way of being offered with a 5-speed manual transmission only, a 326 hp 32v V8 (up from the standard 316 hp), sport wheels and a digital trip computer on the dash. Mileage is just 19,849 and with its beautiful black-on-black paint and interior it looks as fresh today as it did when first produced some 24 years ago. Click through to check out more pics, or go directly to the eBay auction below.

Source: eBayMotors.com

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Three Porsche 918 Spyders Spotted in Germany

As a successor to the Carrera GT, the 918 Spyder is Porsche’s newest super car. The vehicle will feature a 4.6L hybrid V8 and a 7-speed automated manual transmission when it is officially launched. This engine is capable of producing …

Three Porsche 918 Spyders Spotted in Germany More news at

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Remember this classic 993 Turbo Coupe Porsche ad?

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The year was 1995 — Porsche had just introduced its potent 993 Turbo Coupe and it was one monster of a sports car. Under its rear decklid was a new air-cooled turbocharged 3.6-liter flat-6, rated at just over 400 horsepower. Power was sent through a 6-speed manual transmission, with a standard ZF limited slip differential. Unlike all of its turbocharged predecessors, the 993 Turbo Coupe was fitted with all-wheel drive to help put the power to the pavement (the purpose-built 959 does not fall into the standard 911 category). Performance was spectacular for the era — its 0-60 run of just 4.3 seconds and a top speed of 181 mph made it one of the fastest cars in the world.

Distinguished at a distance from its lesser brethren by its sculpted rear spoiler — still one of our all-time favorites — the Turbo was also fitted with widened wheel arches, oversized brakes, unique front and rear fascias and special 18-inch alloy wheels with weight-saving hollow spokes.

Porsche made about 5,978 units — today they are highly sought after and command a premium price.

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