Porsche 911 Carrera

From Porsche press: The 911 itself was the direct successor to Porsche's first sports car, the ground-breaking and now highly coveted Porsche 356. When the 911 went into production as a 1964 model, it launched the horizontally opposed six-cylinder engine configuration that is still found in every Porsche 911 model more than four decades later.

Since their introduction, the 911 Carrera and 911 Carrera S have received continuous refinement. That constant improvement continues for the 2008 model year. Last year, the cars received, among other upgrades, a tire-pressure monitoring system as standard equipment.

Essentially a race seat with a folding backrest, the new sports bucket seats boast carbon fiber- reinforced construction for a weight savings of 15 to 20 pounds (7 to 9 kg) over standard seats, depending on model. Like all Porsche front seats, the sports bucket seats have integrated thorax airbags and are compliant with all U.S. safety standards. In addition, since the sports bucket seats have folding backrests, access to the rear seats is not impeded.

In its current iteration, though the engine is mounted in the rear, as has been the marque’s long- standing trademark, the engine is liquid cooled. The 3.6-liter engine in the Carrera Coupe develops 325 horsepower and 273 lb.-ft. of torque. When mated to the standard-equipment six-speed manual gearbox, the engine takes the 911 Carrera Coupe from a stop to 60 mph (96 kmph) in only 4.8 seconds on its way to a track-tested top speed of 177 mph (285 kmph). When equipped with the optional driver-shiftable Tiptronic S transmission, the zero to 60 mph run takes 5.2 seconds and top track speed is174 mph (280 kmph).

Gallery: Porsche 911 Carrera