THE GRANDMASTER: 2014 PORSCHE 911 TURBO S
When you hang out with people who work for Porsche, you discover they have a naked and unabashed obsession with speed. They talk about their personal highest speed like other people talk about the stock market or their caloric intake.That passion has always resulted in cars that were incredibly powerful, but the company tended to resist beauty or comfort because those values might interfere with the need for speed. So, as you would expect, the third generation of the 911 Turbo S to appear in the United States, as of this year, screams with power. Its 560 horsepower—30 to40 more than the previous generation—meaning that the car can effortlessly reach speeds of, er, the legal limit within seconds and pin all occupants to the backs of their seats. 0 to 60 mph occurs in less than three seconds.It’s slightly disappointing that there is no manual transmission, but it has a “Sport Plus” mode that shifts the car into a more aggressive driving style even in automatic. It does not shift until it hits the red line at 7,200 rpm. So why bother with manual shift? And Formula One-style paddles on the steering wheel offer that thrilling alternative, as well. Handling is superb because of the vehicle’s weight distribution. You have absolute confidence in any turn, which is the soul of skillful driving. Your heart cries out for empty pavement ahead.This Porsche is also a real beauty—with sensuous lines—and it is actually comfortable. The seats are not hard benches but rather heated and ventilated leather seats with 18 adjustable positions. The Burmester sound system is robust,so the vehicle is perfect for putting the top down and cruising.It has two seats in back, but not many adults are going to sit in them. The trunk space, under the front hood, is adequate. All in all, you can now have Porsche’s power with both beauty and utility—if you can afford it.
- Horsepower: 560 hp.
- Price as Tested: $210,620
- MPG: 17 mpg city, 24 mpg highway
- Plus: The air scoops on the side of car make a dramatic statement.
- Nit: The small navigation system feels like it was crammed into the dashboard.
- What it Says About You: You seek the ultimate.