– Ann Arbor, Michigan
Most cars are commodities. You need something to get to work, to get the kids to school, to make a beer run before the game. Be it "basic" transportation or something in the luxury or sports arena, we tend to keep our vehicles for as long as they serve a pretty discrete purpose in our lives.
After a week in the Porsche 911 Carrera T, I would submit that this car is in a different category completely. Like a fine mechanical watch or a precious piece of special-occasion jewelry, this is a new car that you buy not just to keep, but keep in the family.
In 2023, as we pass over the threshold into the electric vehicle era, the 911 T seems to represent now only what the model is capable of today, but also a perfect reflection of its lineage. The T is fast, yes, but also tactile, subtle, and sublime on a great road.
Here’s the formula: A turbocharged 3.0-liter flat-six engine hangs out over the rear axle, making 339 horsepower and 331 pound-feet of torque, composing a striking (and unmistakable) exhaust note near the 7,500-rpm top of the rev range. Winding up the boxer engine is a joy as well, thanks to the snicker-snack action of the close-ratio seven-speed manual transmission.
My kids are only 2 and 4 years old at the moment, but if I had the means, this is exactly the kind of car I’d want to have in the garage to teach them to drive a stick shift. (Surely an exotic training for a teenager come 2035.) If there’s any fault to be found in this gearbox its only that the seventh ratio seems superfluous for anything but cruise-controlled highway driving.
The steering experience might be somewhat less full of road feel than in 911 generations past (or more to the point not EPAS), but its still communicative and quick. I stole away on a Friday morning, intending only to turn my coffee run into a quick drive down a few miles of twisty road, and ended up three towns over with a huge grin and a deeper appreciation for Porsche’s genius steering tuners.
Five, or ten, or one hundred years from now this 911 T will be a satisfyingly involved way in which to steal away for a few hours. One of my favorite elements of the 911 is how it slips easily from chill sports car to near supercar with the right road and a change of driver attitude. This particular 911 Carrera T is, in my view, the perfect distiation of those attributes and as a result a car to bequeath to your kids, grandkids, etc. Please, don’t make this one a lease.
Gallery: 2023 Porsche 911 Carrera T
2023 Porsche 911 Carrera T