Tested: Porsche 911 Turbo S

We take the 560bhp beast out for a spin and hear a roar that only a Porsche turbo can produce.

Damien Reid September 26, 2014

The sound... the sound, it can only be a Porsche turbo. It’s such a distinctive shrill from behind my left ear that as I bury the throttle, I can’t help but feel a tingle of sensation down my spine.

There’s something very special about driving a Porsche Turbo because it’s been a poster car for just on four decades and has stayed true to its original design ethos of being rear-engined and using its now famous flat, six-cylinder turbocharged engine. Of course the details have changed wildly, but the basics are all there and this latest Turbo S takes things a step further.

Lurking in the background of the current supercar wars among the likes of Lamborghini, Ferrari and McLaren has always been the Porsche Turbo, which has been easy to overlook simply because it’s always been there and yet it’s worth being reminded of the vital figures.

Zero to 100kmh in 3.1 seconds and a top speed of 318kmh is nothing short of remarkable from a 3.8-litre, six-cylinder that develops a whopping 560bhp.

The turbo has always been characterised by both its huge rear wing and fat guards, and while the wing is smaller than the old “whale tail” it’s now active and raises at speed, but the guards are as fat as ever, 28mm wider than the Carrera 4.

The rear wing pops up at 120kmh and together with an active front splitter that extends and drops at speed when in Sport Plus mode, gives the Turbo S an extra 132kg of downforce over the rear wheels at speed.

Those familiar with Porsche’s ergonomics will be happy to know that paddle shifts are now used on the steering wheel instead of buttons, returning a much more intuitive feel when shifting through the stunningly good, seven-speed PDK transmission.

Porsche’s Active Suspension Management (PASM) system keeps things in check when thrashing it through the twisties with electronically controlled dampers; two manually selectable maps and the Dynamic Chassis Control (PDCC) system. As expected, brakes are massive with 410mm ceramic discs on the front and 390mm dinner plates on the rear.

Details: visit Porsche.com