To the casual observer, car design must seem an awful lot like an arms race sometimes, with companies constantly adding more. More chrome accents, more body cladding, more soundproofing, more gadgets, more features, more size, more weight — it seems as though it never ends, and gets to a point where a car seems less like something meant to be driven than a safe metal cocoon with wheels and an engine. Porsche has taken a different approach with the 2017 Porsche 911 R, currently on display at the Geneva Motor Show. In the process they’ve proven that sometimes less is much more.
We’ll start with what’s been left out, beginning with large production numbers. The car is a strictly limited edition, and only 991 units will be built. Also absent are a radio and air conditioning, which can be optioned in at no additional cost. There are no rear seats. Insulation has been kept at a minimum. The large spoiler found on the 911 Porsche GT3 RS is traded for a smaller one that’s electonically controlled. You also won’t find the PDK automatic transmission. The net result is a car that’s considerably lighter.
That’s not to say that Porsche has skimped or cut corners; far from it. The PDK has been replaced by a capable six-speed manual transmission that provides shorter shifts between gears. The four liter flat six cylinder engine inherited from the GT3 puts out 500 horsepower, but those horses are pushing a much lighter car. That means that the Porsche 911 R tops out at 200 miles per hour and handles with the effortless assurance of a speed skater. The net result? CNET put it best when they said, “The Porsche 911 R is a return to driving purity.”
Because of its limited production numbers, Porsche aficionados won’t be able to purchase the Porsche 911 R at Porsche of Nashua. However, we do have several other options to whet your appetite for speed and luxury, including the 2016 Porsche Cayman and the 2016 Porsche 911. Come in today for a test drive!