August Achleitner calls the Porsche 911 “The heart of the company.”
He’s the man in charge of the 911 program, so there might be some bias there, but he’s completely right. Without the 911, Porsche wouldn’t be the dominant force it is in performance motoring today.
Fit, Fab and 50 - We celebrate the Porsche 911
Achleitner has now revealed, almost, what the 992 911 will look like, in a few teaser images published alongside an interview he gave within the Porsche.
He says Porsche fans can be assured that the next 911 will stay true to what the badge and its heritage.
“We know where we’re from and where we want to go,” says Achleitner.
“The decisive factor is that the 911 generates a driving feeling that no other car can impart.
“With each innovation, the decisive factor for me is whether it suits the character of the 911.”
He adds that anything new on a Porsche must suit the car itself, rather than being there for the sole purpose of being an expected feature or option.
“We don’t necessarily have to be the first in this regard with the 911. What’s crucial, rather, is that every innovation be offered in a typical Porsche manifestation.”
He gives an example as the 996-era model, the first to feature a navigation system. He says despite its beautiful exterior, it ‘pains him’ to see the navigation system look so outdated now, “because the car suffers for it.”
Because of this, he wants the technology added to a 911 to be perfected before it reaches the car.
"That’s why a 911 will always have a steering wheel.”
He adds that if autonomously driving cars become unavoidable, “then the 911 will be one of the last cars to drive autonomously.”
But there is one change that purists may fear, the rise of electrification. And Achleitner is starting to sway.
“Two years ago I’d have said no way. Today I wouldn’t categorically rule it out,” he says.
“I drove the prototype of our coming electric sports car, the Mission E, and it was a very compelling experience.
“And the performance of the Porsche LMP race cars with hybrid drive systems is quite simply sensational.”
While it’ll still look, drive, and feel 911 – flat six and all – there could be fundamental changes coming to the 911.