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2016 Porsche Boxster Spyder

2016 Porsche Boxster Spyder first drive

12/08/2015

What is it?

There are at least a couple of ways to dissect the 2016 Porsche Boxster Spyder. Depending on your point of view, it’s either a ludicrously high-dollar take on Porsche’s entry-level roadster or the latest shot at a hot rod by way of Zuffenhausen -- the purest, most analog embodiment of what we might call the Porsche spirit offered new on the market today.

Thing is, you’re not wrong either way you slice it. The newest Boxster Spyder is both expensive enough to give you pause and so good that you probably won’t care. It’s the sort of car that hits all the right notes with the purists and seems destined to mine new brand fanatics on its way up the scale. But before you accuse us of gushing, take a look at the specs; they never tell the whole story, but in this case, they say a lot.

For one, you’re shoving what may be one of the 911’s last naturally aspirated gasps -- the 3.8-liter flat-six yanked from the first-gen 991 Carrera S and also found in the Cayman GT4 -- into the lightest platform in its stable, and pairing it exclusively with a six-speed manual transmission. Here, it’s good for 375 hp and 309 lb-ft of torque and a stated 0-60 mph of 4.3 seconds. Would a PDK be quicker around a certain German racetrack? Almost certainly, but that’s totally not the point of this car.

2017 Porsche 911 Carrera S Coupe in Miami Blue

2017 Porsche 911 Carrera first drive

11/16/2015

WHAT IS IT?

This is Type 991, Gen 2: the latest iteration of a car that made Porsche’s name part of the mainstream vernacular. The biggest news is its engine.

The 2017 911 Carrera starts on the 991 platform, introduced as the 2012 911, replacing the 997. Just the third all-new foundation in the 911’s 51 years, the 991 was lengthened and re-proportioned to increase interior space and move more mass forward of its rear wheels. It continues into generation two with the ’17 Carreras --updated with standard adaptive suspension, optional rear steer, a revised PDK transmission and turbocharged engines across the line, starting with the ’17 Carreras and moving forward through the dozen or so variants Porsche fashions from 991.2.

Porsche has some experience with turbos, yes. The 911 Turbo was the first series-built sports car with pressure-regulated turbocharging, and it’s evolved into the ultimate 911 and a brand unto itself. Four decades later, there are cars with turbocharged engines, and there is the Turbo.

Chris Harris test drives the new Porsche Cayman GT4

Watch Chris Harris review the Porsche Cayman GT4

03/11/2015

Chris Harris got his shot at the new Porsche Cayman GT4 in his latest "Chris Harris on Cars" video. We saw the full reveal of the new track toy at the Geneva auto show, and here we see it shaken down at the 18-turn, 2.9-mile Algarve International Circuit in Portimao, Portugal. After a handful of drifty laps, Harris gets the car up on a lift and talks suspension with Porsche Motorsport boss Andreas Preuninger. The verdict? Do what ever you can to drive one.

Keep an eye out: We'll have our review of the Porsche Cayman GT4 in an upcoming issue of Autoweek magazine. 

Porsche expanded the 911 line with the 911 Targa 4S. The 911 Targa 4S combines the classic Targa concept with state-of-the-art roof technology.

2014 Porsche 911 Targa 4S review notes

02/16/2015

SENIOR MOTORSPORTS EDITOR MAC MORRISON: Walk around Porsche’s 911 Targa 4S, soak in its lines, its presence. If you fall within the appropriate age range, you feel nostalgia’s twinge in your heart and stomach.

You don’t need to be a card-carrying Porsche Club of America member to experience these sensations, as the Targa stood as a quirky yet worthy, unique 911 pop-culture staple for decades. Forget how it was born from Porsche’s belief during the late 1960s that pure convertibles -- sorry, cabriolets -- would be outlawed in the United States. If, like me, you were in elementary school in the ’80s -- or the ’60s or ’70s for that matter -- you likely didn’t know or care about the reasoning behind it. The Targa just … was.

2014 Porsche Cayman S review notes

10/21/2014

EDITOR WES RAYNAL: Nice car, this 2014 Porsche Cayman S is, but pity the price. The list of cars I’d spend $100K on before this one is too long to get into here; suffice to say I don’t think there’s any semblance of value here.

Not much wrong with the car other than the sticker, though -- no question it’s a delightful driver.

To me it starts with the glorious flat six: The seemingly perfect amount of power, instant throttle response, and cool sounds. Yes, I’d go with ZF’s dual-clutch gearbox.

Toss the car around? Amen to that. The Cayman S will take what you can dish out and then some -- it’s easy to push hard and confidence-inspiring, thanks to the ultra communicative chassis and instant-response steering. And if you just want to poke around town, the car is up for that too, with a better-than-decent ride over potholes and busted pavement.

I like the interior -- build quality looks great and the seats are terrific. I contort myself getting in and out, but it’s not the car’s fault I could stand to lose a few.

Is the 911 Turbo S the best all-around car on the planet? Signs point to yes.

2014 Porsche 911 Carrera Turbo S review notes

10/01/2014

ROAD TEST EDITOR JONATHAN WONG: When driven on the street, you wouldn’t think that the 2014 Porsche Carrera 911 Turbo S is the performance animal that it is. Nope, it’s a comfortable and low key feeling experience from behind the wheel when rolling around with the adaptive suspension softened and the dual-clutch sequential manual transmission slotted in full automatic mode. The 20-inch low-profile Pirelli P Zero tires make little to no noise over bumps doesn’t mean harsh jolts filtering into the cabin just as I’ve learned in previous drives of the 991 generation of the Carrera. When you do squeeze the gas pedal a little harder you take off from a dead stop in a more rapid manner than a Carrera S, but it doesn’t feel like it’s going to be that much quicker. Then again, I didn’t dare mash the throttle too hard on the street because a 911 Turbo S with a racing yellow paint job doesn’t exactly blend in with the crowd around these parts.

Driving the Porsche Macan off road is a point-and-shoot exercise.

Porsche Macan off-road shenanigans

07/02/2014 If, upon finishing this review, you decide to go out and buy Porsche's latest SUV -- a phrase which still flicks at the mind disconcertingly -- you could do no worse than to head down to Jacksonville, Fla., to Brumos Porsche, which has its very own Hurley Haywood. Not many dealers have a Hurley Haywood. But Brumos does, and it puts their Hurley Haywood to work: every Porsche new or used, he told us, gets taken around the block by the man who won the 24 Hours of Le Mans three times, the 24 Hours of Daytona five times, the man who drove the 1977 Daytona race for eight hours straight. And after he takes it around the block he'll smile, shake your hand -- and if you still have any doubts as to your newfound purchase, "I'm very good at closing," he says -- and then affix a sticker to the windshield: "This car has been personally driven and improved by Hurley Haywood.""What's your day-to-day like?" asked one journalist. "What do you do there?"
The 2014 Porsche Panamera Turbo is quick and cushy, but far from pretty.

2014 Porsche Panamera Turbo review notes

05/29/2014 EXECUTIVE EDITOR RORY CARROLL: I no longer hate the Porsche Panamera. I used to hate it almost as much as I hated the Cayenne. As a Porsche owner and longtime Porsche fan, I thought that both cars were an affront to what I thought the Porsche “brand” stood for. Of course, Porsche stands for making tons of money, which is exactly what they should stand for, so the idea of me being mad at them for building a certain type of car is a little embarrassing in hindsight. Besides, now that I care about Porsche's brand about as much as I care about AT&T's brand, I'm free to evaluate the Panamera as a product rather than a totem -- and it's a great product. It's comfortable and the fit and finish is utterly flawless. In Turbo spec, it is gut-meltingly fast. It's also practical, with a nice little cargo area out back. It sounds great, too. It's also very ugly from the outside, but fortunat
The 2015 Porsche 911 Targa makes 350 hp; the S model makes 400 hp.

2015 Porsche 911 Targa

First drive

04/09/2014 What Is It?It's the latest Porsche 911 Targa, of course -- as in Targa Florio -- based on the Carrera 4 convertible's aluminum body and all-wheel-drive drivetrain. The new 911 Targa is built at the same Zuffenhausen plant as the C4 ragtop, and made its world debut at the 2014 Detroit auto show. With its matte-chrome finish fixed B-pillar hoop, for the first time in a long time, the car reminds us more of classic Targas -- the first prototype was built in '63. The B-pillar hoop extends over the middle of the cabin and helps with torsional rigidity and rollover safety. The convex wrap-around rear window -- two layers of safety glass -- is another nod to the past, but the way the roof works sure isn't. Rather than a hand-removable folding roof panel, the new car has a power top, and its operation is a sight to behold: push a button and the
Coming to terms with the new Porsche Cayman.

2014 Porsche Cayman review notes

03/20/2014 SENIOR MOTORSPORTS EDITOR MAC MORRISON: This week's sign the automotive apocalypse is nigh: I've changed my opinion on the 2014 Porsche Cayman.How often do you read those sheepish words from an automotive writer? Probably not as frequently as you should. But I'll own it here. Frankly, I was afraid this is what would happen to me because it was comically predictable. See if this sounds familiar:--Carmaker introduces new version of popular and highly praised model.--Carmaker has enviable “problem” of cult-like loyalist following, which includes members of automotive media.--To some degree the automotive media -- and to perhaps a larger degree, a particular population within the loyalist following -- $#!^$ all over new model because it feels different than predecessor, and because it has “grown up.”That's how I felt about Porsche's 981 Cayman as well as the 991 911 at launch. Too refined, too large, less impressive stylin

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The image the company sent to future owners who have made deposits is a lightly photoshopped sketch that Britain's Autocar magazine published in March of this year.

TVR makes progress on new Cosworth V8, teases owners with Autocar's sketch

12/29/2015

TVR, the boutique British automaker run aground in 2006 after purchase by a Russian oligarch, is back with plenty of deposits on an undisclosed coupe and a teaser image photoshopped from an Autocar magazine sketch. The fledgeling car company is at work on a new coupe powered by a Cosworth V8 with an expected output of 450 to 500 hp, though it won't be until 2018 that customers will be able to take delivery of the cars. The factory has to be built first, even though the first year's allocation is already sold out.

TVR Chairman Les Edgar gave the future owners of the new coupe a progress report, stating that the company is running at least one engineering mule that has been operating on roads, and that they've recently fired up one of the Cosworth V8s.

Watch F1 cars rip up a mountain in Japan

12/29/2015

Two ex-Formula One cars plus one mountain road equals an epic video shot in Japan by Motor Head Magazine.

It's not too often you see open-wheel cars on public roads -- the Stallone vehicle "Driven" notwithstanding -- but something about it makes the cars look even better than when they're on the racetrack. After the F1 cars have a go, they're followed by some drifters who are nearly as impressive.

The camerawork is also great, so check out more of Motor Head's stuff here.

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