Now that you can get a good look at the next-gen Porsche 911, here's everything we know about the latest version of the iconic sports car.
The Porsche 911 is a genuine icon of the automotive world. Despite over 50 years of evolution, there's still a visible connection from the first examples to the ones sitting in showrooms today. Porsche's engineers also manage to refine this layout over time to keep the 911 on top, like the latest GT2 RS being one of the quickest production cars in the world around the Nürburgring. Now, a new generation is on the horizon, but with several years of spy shots in our archive, there's a ton of disparate info about the model floating around. Here's everything we know about the next 911 in one place.
What Is It?
Come on, you know what a Porsche 911 is. First shown in 1963 and officially going on sale in 1964, the 911 was Porsche's followup to the 356. For decades, it used an air-cooled, rear-mounted flat-six engine in naturally aspirated or turbocharged form. In the late 1990s, the 996 generation made the big switch to a liquid cooling. For 2015, Porsche made the big switch to using turbocharged engines for the base Carrera and Carrera S, leaving naturally-aspirated power for the GT3.
What Does It Look Like?
We have seen test mules of the next-gen 911 since 2015, but a recent batch of spy photos (above) finally gave us a mostly undisguised look at the new model. Compared to the current one, the new coupe has headlights that tilt rearward more, and the hood gains two prominent creases. There are more conspicuous changes when viewing the vehicle in profile because the company stretches the side glass and resculpts the roof, which creates a sleeker silhouette. The rear has skinny, wraparound LED taillights and an active spoiler that incorporates into the tail.
A new 911 Turbo is also on the way, and it has a more aggressive body to fit with the boost in power. Compared to the Carrera versions, there are broader fenders at the front and rear, and the ones in the back have intakes in them. Rather than a tiny active spoiler that incorporates into the tail, the Turbo has a more traditional looking wing that can raise and lower.
Expect a Targa body eventually, but we don't have spy photos of it yet.
Inside, the new 911 will look a lot different. There will still be a large, analog tachometer at the center of the instrument panel, but there will now be digital displays on each side. The design lets Porsche stay with the past by retaining a traditional design element but still moving into the future. Another screen is at the top of the low center stack. Chunky switches dominate the console, and there's a blocky gearshift.
What's Under The Hood?
While we know a whole lot about what the new 911 looks like, its powertrain is a little more of a mystery. The Carrera, Carrera S, and GTS (above) would likely share the same engine but with increasing levels of output. The powerplant might be the existing 3.0-liter biturbo flat six but with an extra boost in power. The Turbo would also retain a biturbo flat six but also likely has more muscle.
Porsche also plans to electrify the next-generation 911 but not immediately. A plug-in hybrid version will join the lineup in 2023 or 2024. According to a rumor, there will possibly be a pair of hybrid versions, with the second being a variant of the Turbo akin to the Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid.
Dr. Frank-Steffen Walliser, Porsche Vice President of Motorsport and GT Cars, says that the next GT3 retains a naturally aspirated engine. Rumors suggest an updated engine could have an astronomical 9,500-rpm redline.
The latest Porsche 911 RSR made the revolutionary switch to using a mid-mounted engine instead of the model's venerable layout of putting the powerplant in the rear. This change has led to a few customers to ask the company for a road-going version. GT car development boss Andreas Preuninger says there's at least a chance of this vehicle going into production
When Will We See It?
Rumors suggest that the Carrera variants could debut at the Paris Motor Show in October, and they would be on sale in early 2019. The unveiling would likely only be for the hardtop variants, though. Look for the convertible versions to arrive next year. Generally, Porsche staggers the launch of the Turbo to keep the 911 lineup fresh, so it's likely coming in 2019 too, and the droptop variants would come a little later.
Expect plenty more spy photos to give us a better look at these models as their unveiling dates draw closer.