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930 to 992: History of the Porsche 911 Turbo

By MOTOR staff, 30 Apr 2020 Features

History of the Porsche 911 Turbo

From novel concept to performance benchmark, we trace the evolution of Porsche's performance icon

Trailblazer, grand tourer, supercar slayer. Over the last 46 years the Porsche 911 Turbo has been feared and revered by manufacturers and enthusiasts alike. We trace the evolution of Porsche's performance icon through seven generations. 

01 | 'The 930' (1974 - 1989)

Put turbo technology to good use when such a thing was still a novelty. Its initial 3.0-litre air-cooled flat-six made 191kW thanks to 0.8bar (11.6psi) boost pressure, yet the ‘whale-tail’ earned a reputation for lag. And rear-engine oversteer.

The Five Greatest 911s - 930 911 Turbo

02 | 964 911 Turbo (1990 - 1994)

Cash-strapped Porsche re-used the later 3.3 from the 930 but re-engineered for less lag and now with 235kW (and power steering!). The widebody 964 Turbo was one of the fastest cars on the road of the day, later got the 3.6L with 265kW/520Nm.

MOTOR news: Singer's 373kW restomod 964 is complete

03 | 993 911 Turbo (1995 - 1998)

Bit of a monster, new twin-turbos pumped power from the 3.6-litre flat-six to 300kW. New AWD from the 959 and six-speed ’box meant 0-100km/h in 4.2sec. Quicker Turbo S appeared in 1997. Last of the air-cooled Turbos; very first MOTOR PCOTY winner. 

MOTOR news: Porsche rebuilt 993 Turbo for 911 Turbo special

04 | 996 911 Turbo (2000 - 2006)

While the rest of the range got all-new engines, now liquid-cooled, the Turbo’s dry-sump 3.6-litre was based on that of the 1998 Le Mans-winning 911 GT1. Power rises to 309kW while 0-100km/h drops to 4.0sec, with a top speed of 307km/h. 

classic MOTOR: 996 GT2 driven!

05 | 997 911 Turbo (2006 - 2013)

Brand new 3.8-litre debuted variable turbine geometry as outputs hit 353kW and 620Nm. Manual still an option, but Tiptronic auto the quicker transmission, 3.7sec versus 3.9. Later, a new PDK ’box and 390kW Turbo S would mean 3.3sec...

classic MOTOR: Beating the drag regulations in a 997 911 Turbo S

06 | 991 911 Turbo (2013 - 2019)

PDK now the only ’box but with new tech like rear-steering. Outputs from the 3.8 reach 382kW/412kW between Turbo and S as 0-100km/h times shorten again, now 3.0sec/2.9sec. Romps to PCOTY wins in 2014; and 2017 in updated 991.2.

Related: 991 Turbo S - nine awesome facts

07 | 992 911 Turbo (2020)

New eight-speed PDK and high-tech interior – but no expected hybrid yet. Power now twice that of 964, with 478kW, thanks to new EA9A2 3.8-litre flat-six. Zero to 100km/h a claimed 2.7sec – but could 2.5sec be possible? Stay tuned.

MOTOR review: 992 Turbo S

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