Porsche 911 Carrera GTS

Porsche leads the race again

"If you think a Porsche 911 Carrera S just isn't quite enough and the Porsche 911 GT3 is just a bit too much, here you've got a new Avatar in the all new 911 GTS" said Ershad

"GTS stands for Gran Turismo Sport, and it represents extraordinary Porsche performance" 
"It's 30 hp more than Carrera S"

"It's one of the nicest 911s in the lineup"

"The PDK stole the show: perfect and lightning fast"

No matter what, Porsche always has something up its sleeve to lure owners back into the showroom. If you think a Porsche 911 Carrera S just isn't quite enough and the Porsche 911 GT3 is just a bit too much, here you've got a new Avatar in the all new 911 GTS. So now the 911 model series have exceeded 20 sports cars at six power levels and our tester, the nine-eleven (911) GTS joins the GTS group of Boxter, Cayman, Panamera and Cayenne.

GTS stands for Gran Turismo Sport, and it represents extraordinary Porsche performance. It's easy to figure out, thanks to the black contrast color and our tester in particular was just awesome. The Carmine Red paintwork was striking and the black elements around the body were too good to ignore. It has the 911 Carrera 4 body which features wide flared rear wheel arches and the widened track that's seen on the AWD 911. Despite this, the GTS is lighter than Carrera S. Black accents on the headlights, trim stripes, exhaust tailpipes, and GTS badges on the door and rear lid are the other nice appointments. Smoked Bi-Xenon headlights and front lights round up the lighting department and a set of 20 inch center lock wheels in gloss black calls for attention: "Come, look at me."

As far as the physique is concerned, here we have a two-plus-two seat coupe made out of lightweight body in aluminum steel construction with wings, doors, and boot and bonnet lids made of aluminum. Inside, almost everything is made out of black Alcantra. In the front, the four-way adjustable sport plus seats have got black GTS logo on the head restraints. Aluminum door sill plates feature Carrera GTS logo in black and so are the dials in the instrument cluster which sport the GTS logo.

Under the hood, there's a flat-six Boxer 3.8 liter unit that produces 430bhp. That's 30bhp more than Carrera S. It runs on a seven speed dual clutch PDK system and the power goes through to rear wheels.

GTS has the Sports Chrono Package with active engine mounts. So that gives you an additional "Sport Plus" mode with a more aggressive throttle map and a better stability control setting. Active engine mounts is to keep the car composed under quick maneuvers in different speed, which is great on a track. The suspension and steering have been re-tuned for better weight and feedback. Further, there is PASM (Porsche Active Suspension Management) that handle the dampers for better grip and balance on corners and bends. There's more attention put for adequate torque distribution, which is handy on corners and PTV (Porsche Torque Vectoring) takes care of that.

On a straight road, the GTS rides firmer than the Carrera S. I wouldn't call the GTS a comfortable tourer but I am happy as long as it rides like a 911 for a daily round. The lowered stance and a wider track is a good help for traction. There is some noise in the cabin and that's coming out of those wide rims and low-profile tires that kick up noticeably. Like the Merc's AMG GTS, here you have options to configure powertrains and suspension dynamics separately with the buttons on the center console. 'Sport' and 'Sport Plus' buttons do the regular rounds of adjusting dampers, throttle response and mapping of the PDK gearbox. Well, Sport Plus wasn't any regular button. There was much more in it  
As expected, the GTS was fast and the handling dynamics were encouraging. The extra traction in the rear is felt and the brakes were on the money. So until now, the difference is marginal when compared to the Carrera S, even with 30hp added.

Now it was time for the Sport Plus mode as we approached a lost resort in Dubai which had no straight roads to reach - ideal. With a brisk throttle and dampers stiffened even more, the gear shifts were too quick on the move. The PDK stole the show: perfect and lightning fast. I started to catch up with the GTS assault. The noise out of the exhausts was freaking alarming and I've heard it before - it's the GTS roar. You can otherwise engage the exhaust button in the center console to control the note. Floor the acceleration until you tick the high revs and there you go. The engine goes all-out with a bang - nasty but I loved it.

On the road, even in fairly slippery conditions, balance, directional response, handling and stability were excellent. GTS beats its lesser siblings when it comes to precision through the turns and corners. The PDCC (Porsche Dynamic Chassis Control) was effective in tight angles and they waved off unwanted body roll for a nice balance. To cut the story short, I think its right to say that GTS's prowess to counter a slalom circuit or a turn, so effortlessly quick with a perfect balance, is something that sets it apart from others.

Verdict
Porsche wanted a car that fits in between the 911 S and GT3, and it has absolutely done that. They have made a lovely machine - great to look and an amazing drive. I actually thought its one of the nicest 911s in the lineup. But let's not ignore the competition. The AMG GTS that we've featured in this same issue is an impressive beast too. They are just short of minor tweaks, but otherwise, they already made it to the league. After all, there's always room for choice in the market, but for now, Porsche leads the race!

Pros: stunning looks and black accent across the body, powerful, handling and superior balance
Cons: too close to Carrera S in the price bracket
Rivals: Mercedes-Benz AMG GT S, Jaguar F-Type Coupe R 
Engine: Flat-6 Boxer 3.8 liter, 430hp @ 7500 rpm, 440Nm @ 5750 rpm
Transmission: 7 speed dual clutch PDK, RWD 
Performance: 0-100 kph: 4.4 sec, 9.5 L /100 km, top speed: 306 kph 
Weight: 1445 kg
4.5 STARS
One word: precision

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