06 December 2008

are the newest 911s really 911s?

consider this 1984 Porsche 911 Targa:

that's pretty darn close to my dream car, though i like the coupe more than the Targa. i love that era of 911s: distinctive, ugly but beautiful, and with that ridiculous whale fin that i just love.

for fun, i configured this 2009 911 using the online car configurator:

it's a Carrera 4, and i really dig the tan interior and black exterior. but there's something not quite 911-ish about it. it's not nearly as distinct as the 1984 version, and i think that makes it a bit boring. worse yet, it resembles my mom's 1977 buick skyhawk more than that Targa:

(file photo)

that is distressing me a bit, i must confess. yes, that skyhawk could do > 100 mph, but i wouldn't want to spend upwards of $105k (the cost of my configuration) to get that skyhawk look.

does that make the Boxster the prettiest 2009 production Porsche?

yes, i know the current 911 is MUCH superior to the 1984 version in just about every aspect, and yes i know i probably sound like some kind of 911 purist snob and i apologize for that, and yes i know i've never actually owned anything sportier than my 1987 VW Golf GT, but i just love that older look.


pyker said...

That resemblance is startling. Not only is the boxster prettier than the normal 911, but James May also described the boxster as "what the 911 used to be", didn't he? Of the 911s, I think the GT3 RS looks the best.

zim said...

yes, James did say that.

Ame correctly mentioned to me that I don't like the sun so wtf would i be doing buying a convertible. a fair point.

is the "Coxster" really just a Boxster coupe? Jeremy hinted that the Boxster was still more fun to drive, and for reasons that didn't have to do with the joy of a convertible.

pyker said...

I thought the cayman was just a coupe boxster.

zim said...

in clarkson's TG review, he said the Boxster was more nimble. and iirc, they do have different engine options.

pyker said...

Cayman's been updated! "now the best car in the Porsche portfolio"

zim said...

i must confess i keep eyeing the cayman, and those new numbers for 2009 look even more impressive.

from certain angles, i think the cayman looks better than the 911 even. from other angles (most notably the rear), not so much.

if they put AWD in that thing, the scales would be well tipped.

pyker said...

The Cayman is:
* not a souped-up beetle
* mid-engined
* approximately in length and weight the dimensions of that 1984 targa you like rather than the heavier modern 911
* not as wankerific as the 911, fwiw

Can you take them for a meaningful test drive anywhere?

zim said...

re: test drive

there is a porsche dealership in lincolnwood, though i don't know how much luck at have at a test drive.

i was thinking of dropping the $2k on a day of porsche training in Nevada, where i'd get time in all 4 models.

actually, i think that'd be obligatory before popping down any cash. who knows, maybe i'll like the Cayenne best! (yeah right)

pyker said...

Does the Nevada place give you the top-end Cayman, or the slowest to use as the warm-up car for the day?

zim said...

from here:

"You will pilot the latest Porsche models; Carrera, Carrera S, Boxster, Cayman and Cayenne S and experience the incomparable Porsche 911 Turbo."

they also claim more track time than anywhere else, but who knows.