BEHIND THE WHEEL: Porsche 911 Carrera S

SATURDAY JULY 25, 2015

I am not going to beat about and going straight to the point because the 991 Carrera is quite the perfect car. The torque has been spread throughout the rev range giving the car more urgency down low so there’s no need to reach for higher rpm compared to its predecessor in city drives. Having a newer version of the PDK, low speeds jerkings are of the past as the gears now shift within a blink of an eye. The comfort of the suspensions has also been vastly improved where a modern Carrera has become an ace in miles crunching.

PRO

Looks and feel expensive

Telepathic gearshifts

Overall comfort

Noise

CON

Some heart has been leaked away

Pricier than before

SPECIFICATION

3.8-litre flat-six

400hp 440Nm

7-speed PDK

0-100 km/h: 4.1s

Top speed: 302 km/h

From RM 930,000

Gone is the hydraulic steering, replaced with an electric setup that’s to me largely accurate yet precise. I’ve got no beef with it even though it might be a tad light, lacking that hydraulic feedback or shake from a rear-engined car. You’ve got to have Sports Chrono, Sports Exhaust (PSE) along with active dampers (PASM) installed for the full 911 experience. The first option works pretty much like before while the new sports exhaust system gives you more noise and crackle (though not as chatty as the F56 Cooper S’). Finally the active dampers will grant you two cars first, a supple riding bona fide grand tourer second, a track weapon.

As much as it is perfect but in truth, it is at best near-perfect. It is a better successor only if you have all the above mentioned options otherwise you would be left wishing that you had spent more to fill the centre console with more buttons. The fact that the center front grill has come off and loosely fitted seat belt columns on the B-pillar after a year of ownership are quite unacceptable for something that is nudging a million ringgit. The 991 as a whole has been given proper upgrades as everything looks and feels expensive (if you tick the full leather option).

 " Flat-6 and sports exhaust are two things one can never get enough of "

Having spent an entire day in a 991 Carrera S doing the slow as well as fast bits (more of the latter), it has earned my utmost respect for only consuming 16.5 litres of fuel every 100 km. It has covered about 300 kilometres but I can’t help to feel that it has left me wishing for it to be more driver-involving. Even in Sports Plus mode, push it hard into a bend on a sunny day, it would first understeer then balance it out for you. Push harder and give it a flick would only grant you a little slide which is all good if a balanced handling is what you are after.

Porsche’s launch control system is the easiest one in the industry, the steel brakes bite hard while the 3.8-litre block alongside sports exhaust system takes the centre stage. The noise it produces is one thing I can never get enough of. My only concern is that the latest Carrera S has become slightly disconnected from pure a driving involvement, leaving more room for the development of 991 GT/RS. This mean you'd require two 911s, a Carrera for everyday and a GT model for the weekends. As true as that goes, my heart was left wanting the cruder and rawer 997.

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