2011 Porsche 911 Turbo S Review
After an absence of five years, the Turbo S has returned to the 911 lineup.
The new, 997-flavored twist on the ultimate neunelf will feed some 530 hp and 516 lb-ft of torque to all four wheels from its twin-turbocharged 3.8-liter flat six. The regular, and now useless, non-S 911 Turbo makes do with an inadequate 500 hp and 480 lb-ft from the same engine, although it can match the 516 pounding feet of the Turbo S via an overboost function. The creation of the S involved revising the engine software to pump up the maximum boost from 11.6 psi to 14.5, which just so happens to be the figure made during the Turbo’s overboost function. No engine internals were changed. Fuel economy is rated at 17 mpg city and 24 mpg highway.
The S gets as standard several key performance options from the “base” Turbo’s list of extras, including carbon-ceramic brakes, a torque-vectoring function for the stability control, Porsche’s excellent seven-speed PDK dual-clutch gearbox, and the Sport Chrono Turbo package. The latter includes an on-dash chronometer, dynamic engine mounts, and a Sport Plus button for the PDK gearbox.
The magical Sport Plus button alters shift response and throttle calibrations, and also allows for a launch-control function, which, in our tests, enabled a PDK-equipped 911 Turbo to execute the 0-to-60-mph sprint in an eyeball-melting 2.9 seconds. We’re sure the Turbo S will knock off at least a tenth or two from that time, and it’s rumored that Porsche will ask buyers to sign a waiver assuming all risks and penalties associated with being mistaken for an intercontinental ballistic missile. Top speed is an ICBM-like 195 mph.
Further standard stuff includes a full leather interior; cornering headlamps; adaptive front seats; 19-inch, center-locking wheels; and a sport steering wheel with gearshift paddles for the PDK gearbox. Interior color choices include two-tone black and cream or two-tone black and blue, and there’s an exclusive Ice Blue Metallic exterior paint. The 2011 Turbo S goes on sale in May as the 16th 911 variant available in the U.S.; the coupe will run $160,050, while the convertible model will cost $171,150. Those are increases of roughly $30K over the corresponding Turbo models. Hey—if you want it all, you’re gonna have to pay for it.