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Making Sense of Porsche Brake Colors

Porsche was not the first company to offer disc brakes. That honor goes to Austin Healey all the way back in 1954. Indeed, Porsche began offering disc brakes in 1962, the same year that Studebaker introduced a Bendix system on the Avanti. Despite being a bit late to the game, Porsche has always taken disc brake development very seriously. Beginning with the annular discs used on the 1962 Carrera 2, all the way through the most modern PCCB systems, Porsche has kept themselves at the forefront of brake development.

Today, Porsche offers several types of brakes across its model range. For ease of identification, these systems are color coded. Each system gets a unique caliper color to help identify which system is in use.

Black: The Basic Brake

In a modern Porsche, black calipers signify the standard brake package. In a 911, for instance, this means 350mm cast front and rear rotors with cast monobloc calipers front and rear. Incidentally, black was the first color used on Porsche brake calipers, with black cast aluminum calipers first appearing on the 928 and 911 in the late 1970s. For lesser models, this signified upgraded brakes from the often unfinished standard calipers. For example, where a standard 944 used zinc plated single piston calipers, the Turbo, Turbo S and S2 used black-finished cast aluminum calipers.

Today, black calipers are the standard brakes on any Porsche model.

Silver and Red: The « S » Brake

The standard brakes used on Porsche « S »  models come finished in either silver or red. Typically, sports cars use red calipers, while the Macan, Panamera and Cayenne use silver. This shift in colors also signifies the first brake upgrade. For instance, a base Macan uses a 345mm front brake rotor with a 4-piston monoblock caliper. Moving the S model nets both a larger disc, and a more powerful 6-piston brake caliper.

Curiously, while the colors change from model to model, this does not always signify that the brakes themselves are substantially different. For instance, both the base 718 Cayman and 718 Cayman S use the same 4-piston front and rear calipers, clamping the same size 330mm front and 300mm rear brake rotors. Consult the model specification sheet for the model you are interested in to see if that particular S model includes larger brakes.

Acid Green: The Hybrid Brakes

Green brakes are used almost exclusively on Porsche hybrid models, including the 918 Hypercar. In this instance, the color of the brakes does not necessarily indicate the type of disc brake system in use. Regenerative braking is used by all but one model with green brake calipers.

The only exception to this rule is the 997 Turbo S Edition 918 Hybrid. This model was sold as an add-on for 918 Hybrid buyers, and was finished to match the 918. As such, this model uses acid green brake calipers, but does not feature a hybrid system.

Yellow: Porsche Carbon Ceramic Brakes

These are the top brakes in the Porsche lineup. First launched on the 996 GT2 road car in 2001, Porsche’s Carbon Ceramic discs are able withstand significantly higher temperatures than their grey iron counterparts. These brakes are formed using ceramic bonded with carbon fiber. The ceramic provides the heat resistance in the rotor, while the bonded carbon filament provides the strength.

These brakes are available in virtually all Porsche models, ranging from the base Boxster, all the way to the top 911s, Panamera and Cayenne. In addition to shedding more heat, carbon ceramic brakes weigh up to 50% less than standard brake rotors. This weight reduction decreases unsprung weight, sharpening cornering and improving ride quality.

Though they are a very expensive option, at some $7,410USD on a base Cayman and $9,210USD on a 991 Turbo, these brakes offer superior fade resistance, and an increased lifespan compared to their iron counterparts.

A short video on how Carbon Ceramic brakes are made is attached below.


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Porsche’s Self-Parking Tech: Autonomous Future Or Convenient Tech?

Porsche first announced this new self-parking technology earlier this year, and it will begin to roll out across Europe in the next few months with further market availability after. They’re billing this Remote Park Assist tech as a boon for city dwellers and suburbanites alike, as you can reverse into a parking spot that is super tight without being in your Porsche. This makes it easier to get out of the Porsche while the doors are clear and then reverse your Cayenne into the space where it would have been more difficult to extricate yourself.

The Cayenne will even help you find your parking space, as the technology suite includes a feature that detects and highlights parking spots that the Porsche SUV will fit in without issue. The system works with spots on both sides of the street, and includes parallel and right angle parking. Once you’ve found a suitable parking space, you can hop out of the vehicle and control the action from your smart phone’s touch screen. Just press and hold the OK button until the Cayenne has finished its parking actions.

Porsche has added this technology thanks to a highly complex system of electronic aids that completely take the driver out of the equation. According to Porsche’s press release on the matter, four extra high-tech processors coordinate the parking job out to twenty more control units. Four cameras on the Porsche help produce a 360-degree view of the Cayenne in real time, and the computer uses an additional twelve ultrasonic sensors. The system, as Porsche explains it, builds an impact-buffering cocoon around the SUV to optimize caution, precision, and safety. If the system detects a pedestrian, a high curb, or a parking bollard near the vehicle, it will intervene and stop the parking process, or make automatic adjustments as necessary. Of course, the parking process can be paused by remote control of the user at any time.

Are We Users or Drivers?

Herein lies the crux of the problem, Porsche has begun thinking of customers as « users » instead of « drivers ». Right now these self-driving features are focused on convenience and sparing you, the owner of the Cayenne, a few extra seconds and perhaps a little discomfort. « Where is the harm in that?, » you might say. How much longer will we retain control of our own Porsches? The company has come out against full autonomy in the past, but seems to continually re-adjust their stance on the matter, gradually moving toward the idea. How long will it be before Porsche introduces autonomous driving technology for highway and city surface streets? Will they bill it as an autonomous way to get to your favorite driving roads or race track? If that happens, will the driver ever have full control of their Porsche again? What are your thoughts on an autonomous Porsche?


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GPS-Based Anti-Theft Protection Is Coming For Porsche Classic Vehicles

How many classic Porsches have you seen with a seemingly extraneous lock cylinder aft of the driver’s door? It’s a common sight on 944s and 924s, and occasionally crops up on other models. These archaic anti-theft systems are often broken, and are easily defeated. Indeed, the 944 system can be defeated without tools. Thankfully, Porsche is continuing to look out for the security of classic models. The currently-available GPS-based system used on current models is now being adapted to classic Porsches. The system is not yet available, but Porsche has one in development which includes GPS and smart-phone assisted monitoring for your classic Porsche.

Beyond a Basic Alarm

Even the best cared for, locked away Porsches are not always completely safe. Guy Newmark’s Million Mile 356 was stolen from his locked garage several years ago. While it was quickly recovered with the help of fellow enthusiasts, GPS tracking would only have expedited the process and helped save Guy the stress, waiting and hand-wringing he no-doubt suffered while waiting for his Porsche to be found.

The new system is sophisticated, and integrates several methodologies for securing your Porsche. The basic anti-theft system will trigger an alarm if the vehicle detects a theft attempt. If the alarm does not deter the thief, several other measures are then activated, including a nation-specific security center and GPS tracking.

How the System Secures Your Porsche

For instance, if the system detects that your Porsche’s battery has been disconnected, the alarm system will send an alert to the owner’s phone and to the international security center via the Porsche Classic app. If the owner confirms that the battery disconnect was unauthorized, the system then notifies the local authorities. An integrated GPS sensor tracks the vehicle’s route, and provides responders data to help track the vehicle.

Additionally, a wireless command which can be triggered from the app can prevent you Porsche from being started (think of it like a 993 immobilizer on steroids). Owners can use the app to set boundaries, a « Geofence » for the car, which can allow vehicles to be safely test-driven by a stranger. If the established boundaries are crossed, then you and authorities will be notified.

The system is not currently available, but is being developed for integration in classic models ranging from the 356 to the Carrera GT. 6-volt Porsche can be adapted using an available voltage-converter, also in development.

As the system is still in development, pricing information hasn’t been released. We will update as more information is released. Porsche says the system will become available in Europe beginning in the Spring of 2018. A North American release date has not yet been announced.

The post GPS-Based Anti-Theft Protection Is Coming For Porsche Classic Vehicles appeared first on FLATSIXES.


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Porsche Adds A New Acronym: NVA. Here’s What Night Vision Assist Does

As headlight technology has advanced, so has our ability to see greater distances ahead into the dark of night. However, even the best LED lights, like Porsche’s matrix headlights found on the new Panamera, illuminate the night only so far (200 meters in this case). But at highway speeds, and above, 200 meters is traveled in mere seconds (6-seconds at 75 MPH). What if an animal, or worse yet a person or child, were to dart out in-front of you? Would you have the time to react? We’d all like to think so, but maybe we’re driving distracted or just simply tired. Porsche’s new Night Vision Assist aim to put an « End to Night » and up your odds for a safe outcome.

What is Porsche Night Vision Assist and How Does it Work?

  • Using a thermal imaging camera installed up front, your Porsche will register the infrared signature emitted by all living beings a full 100 meters further than your headlights can see (at the same highway speeds mentioned above, that adds 3-seconds to your response time).
  • The Night Vision Assist computer then calculates a differential thermal image and feeds it to the right-hand “Car & Info” display in your instrument cluster. As soon as the thermal imaging camera detects people or animals, they’re clearly highlighted in a yellow frame in the otherwise black-and-white image. The idea is that the driver will intuitively notice the color change and be forewarned of the impending danger. If the control module calculates that the situation is a more serious hazard, the marking changes from yellow to red.
  • Even if another function of the Porsche Communication Management (PCM) system is currently active in the respective display, the PCM automatically shows the image from the Night Vision Assist in case of danger.
  • More importantly, the system primes your Porsche’s brakes in order to o stop as quickly as possible, if needed.
  • At the same time, a symbol depicting either a pedestrian or an animal warning is displayed to the left of the tachometer in the “Speed & Assist” instrument. Lastly, an audible warning is issued inside the cockpit.

As the system is capable of distinguishing between people and animals it reacts differently on the outside depending on what’s in front of you:

  • When a pedestrian comes into view, your Porsche’s PDLS Plus light will briefly flash 3-times making the potential danger much more visible to the driver.
  • When an animal is detected, the Night Vision Assist system is smart enough to not flash the lights as many could be startled from this action and pose an even greater danger.
  • Night Vision Assist switches on automatically in darkness and is active up to a speed of 155 mph.
  • The animal warning function is automatically deactivated in urban areas in order to prevent false alarms triggered by dogs on leashes and the like.
  • Technological heat sources, such as a recently ridden motorcycle, are ignored by Night Vision Assist.

How Much Does Night Vision Assist Cost and What Models is it Available On?

As of right now, Porsche’s Night Vision Assist is only available on the new Panamera. However, moving forward it will be available on the 2019 Cayenne and will hopefully trickle down to other models in time. Cost for the system is $2450 as a stand alone option. Or, you can get on the Panamera as part of the larger, more expensive Assistance Package ($5370) that includes: Porsche’s InnoDrive with Adaptive Cruise Control and Traffic Jam Assist, Lane Keep Assist and Night Vision Assist.

The post Porsche Adds A New Acronym: NVA. Here’s What Night Vision Assist Does appeared first on FLATSIXES.


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Is Porsche Sports Exhaust Option Worth the Money?


When you buy a new Porsche it’s pretty easy to quickly add on additional expenses in options, lots of them. Should you get the bigger wheels? Do you need leather wrapped air condition vents? What about deviated stitching on your seats? Seriously, the options can seem literally limitless. However, there are certain performance and visual options that most people seriously consider. One of those is the Porsche Sports Exhaust option or PSE for short (currently around $3,000 on the 911).

By now, I’m sure most of you are familiar with it, but if you’re not, Porsche first introduce the system in 2009. Since then, it’s changed little other than some external visual modifications. Basically, the system consists of an exhaust flap on each main silencer that’s activated by the engine’s electronic control system. Once activated, the system varies the sound of the exhaust as a function of engine load, speed and road speed.

But is it Worth It?

Here to answer that question for us is none other than YouTube’s Nick Murray. Nick took his 991 C4S (without PSE) and compared it against his friends’ 991 C4S equipped with PSE. While we don’t necessarily agree with all that Nick has to say, we do agree that his C4S without PSE appears wider due to the tail-pipe configuration.

What do you think? Is it worth the extra $3,000?

The post Is Porsche Sports Exhaust Option Worth the Money? appeared first on FLATSIXES.


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