911 Carrera a legend among sports cars
THE RIDE: Two-door, four-passenger 2008 Porsche 911 Carrera coupe. DOWN THE ROAD: It succeeded the renowned 356 in 1964. Since then, there has been no looking back for this iconic car, which it's safe to say is suitable to take to a racetrack or cruise down the street. Step on the gas and the rev-happy and sprightly engine growls to life. Sitting on a monocoque structure made of steel, the rear-wheel-drive 911 Carrera scoots from 0 to 60 mph in 4.8 seconds. TECH & PERFORMANCE: The 911 has retained its traditional rear-mounted and horizontally opposed six-cylinder engine. The 3.6-liter water-cooled 911 boasts 325 horsepower at 6800 rpm and 273 pounds-feet of torque at 4250 rpm. It is mated to a 6-speed manual transmission, which is fun to shift. A MacPherson strut in the front and a five-arm multilink rear suspension lend stability to the speedster. The tremendous stopping abilities can be attributed to 12.5-inch front and 11.8-inch rear vented disc rotors, backed by four-piston calipers. For a celebrated sports car with plenty of power at its command, EPA mileage figures of 18 in the city and 26 on the highway are praiseworthy. LOOK & FEEL: The familiar Porsche crest sits atop the shapely hood surrounded by circular bi-xenon headlights. Take a step back and the automatic retractable spoiler and oval-shaped exhaust outlets will draw your attention. The leather bucket seats are well-bolstered and supportive as you slide into the well-appointed cabin. The Alcantara liner is a gratifying touch as is the leather on the three-spoke tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, doors, shifter knob, hand brake and center console. The five-dial white-on-black instrumental panel hosting a tachometer, analog speedometer, fuel, oil temperature and pressure gauges enhances the distinctive appearance. The standard 280-watt Bose sound system with nine speakers is a hoot. Porsche designers cleverly have used the space below the glove box for two pop-out cup holders. If the front trunk area doesn't hold your luggage, the rear-split folding seat also can serve as a bench.SAFETY FIRST: Dual front, seat-mounted thorax and head-protecting airbags, four-wheel antilock brakes, Porsche's stability management system and active brake differential are standard. OUT THE DOOR: $73,500, plus tax, tag, delivery and destination charges. BY THE NUMBERS: Tires, 235/40ZR18 front; 265/40ZR18 rear; wheelbase, 92.5 inches; length, 175.6 inches; weight, 3,075 pounds; fuel capacity, 16.9 gallons; highway, 26 mpg; city, 18 mpg. WHY DIG IT: It's a legend among sports cars. Even after 44 years, the 911 coupe has held on to its standing as a performance-driven sports car. Par none.
Nitish S. Rele is an advertising staff writer for The Tampa Tribune.