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2017 Porsche 911 Carrera S manual quick review

By Louis Cordony, 20 May 2017 Reviews

2017 Porsche 911 Carrara S

Is manual the way to go with the 991.2 911?

Look, most of us are going to be pretty happy with Porsche’s twin-clutch PDK. Smooth in traffic after a long day in the office, but lightning fast up and down the cogs in manual mode on a nice road come the weekend, it does offer the best of both worlds. And yet, there’s still something undeniably special about having a pedal for the clutch and a lever to choose your own ratio.

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Porsche, of course, still offers manual in many of its sports cars and in the newly turbocharged 911 Carrera it’s a happier marriage than with the old atmo flat-six. See, the tall gears – third is good for 50km/h all the way to 180km/h – made it hard to properly exploit all the previous engine’s performance (and noise) stashed at the top of the tacho.

Now, though, the glut of turbo torque smack-bang from 2000rpm to 7500rpm, means those taller gears aren’t quite so much an issue, letting you surf the mid-range muscle and use more of the engine’s performance.

2018 Porsche 911 GT3 laps Nurburgring in 7min12sec

Unfortunately, in some modes the engine will automatically blip itself on downchanges, robbing you of your chance to practice your heel-toe – but making you look like a driving god to your mates – and we wish one of the many blank console buttons was to turn this off.

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But otherwise everything else about this manual sports car is pretty bang-on: a nice shift knob, a near-perfect driving position, a delightful-to-use clutch, and a nicely-judged shift through the gates.

Sure, you’ll be 0.4sec slower to 100km/h than the bloke with the same car in PDK, but who’s going to have the bigger grin on the back streets home? Exactly. And you’ll be saving $5950 in the process.

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