£129,987 - £188,211 Price range
The 911 Turbo S is not only fast in a straight line, with more than 500hp that’s a given, but it’s incredibly quick in corners too. The four-wheel-drive Porsche can be driven to the limit in just about any weather, in a way the Ferrari 488 cannot. Dial back the speed and the 911 Turbo turns into usable daily driver thanks to its fastidiously built cabin, decent ride and manageable dimensions.
The 911’s interior might not be as exciting as in some rivals, but you get the feeling everything will keep working for years without fault. There’s also decent space for two kids in the back and the boot can hold the odd couple of soft bags.
The twin-turbocharged flat-six engine powering the Turbo is an evolution of the previous model and its instant throttle response means you’d be hard pushed to notice it’s turbocharged.
Inside, there’s little of the passionate design of the Ferrari 488, but the overall finish is exemplary. We reckon no other car in class will feel as sturdy as the 911 a few years down the line and getting in or out of it is easier than in rivals.
It’s a bit black and gray in there, but you can jazz up the cabin by paying Porsche to paint the air-vents in the exterior colour for cool £806.
The touchscreen infotainment system has dedicated physical shortcut buttons for the frequently used features, so it’s easy to operate on the move. That said Audi’s MMI, fitted to the R8, simply works better thanks to its rotary controller.
Porsche 911 Turbo passenger space
Unlike in some rivals, visibility is very good in the 911. There’s also plenty of room for tall adults in the front and the rear seats are perfect for extra storage or transporting kids, but not for much else. If you want to carry a baby seat, the Isofix tethering points are another option costing £122. At least you can choose between standard and sports bucket seats free of charge.
Porsche 911 Turbo boot space
If you use the rear seats as extra storage you get 260 litres of space. Combine that with the 145 litres in the front boot and you can pack more luggage in the 911 Turbo S than in an Audi R8.
Let’s get the main thing out of the way first – the 911 Turbo is hugely fast. The 911 Turbo S version, however, is even faster – the 0-62mph sprint is dispatched in a laughable 2.9 seconds, while the Porsche will be doing over 100mph by the time a hot hatchback such as the VW Golf GTI reaches 62mph.
However, the 911 Turbo is about so much more than just being mind-bendingly fast – it’s also arguably the most usable supercar you can have. It smooths out bumps in the road really well for something so quick yet practical enough to have Isofix child-seat mounts in the back seats. However, in terms of sheer comfort, the Ferrari 488 edges it slightly.
Despite the no-nonsense cabin and under-the-radar styling you can have a lot of fun driving the 911 Turbo because the traction control system is quite lenient and makes soft and progressive interventions that make you feel like a driving god. This, combined with the spectacular acceleration out of slow corners makes the 911 Turbo huge fun on the limit, but also incredibly easy to drive for something with more than 550hp.
The performance of the Turbo is spectacular and the Turbo S is in a different league to that of the standard 911. Thanks to its 572hp engine, the Turbo S nearly halves the 4.6-second 0-62mph acceleration of the regular model.
That pace isn’t so surprising once you know that the 470lb ft of torque is available as soon as 3,300rpm and doesn’t start diminishing until you reach 5,800rpm. In everyday driving that translates to in-gear acceleration furious enough to rearrange your internal organs. For example 50mph to 75mph takes just 1.8 seconds.
Porsche quotes combined fuel economy at 31mpg, but we’d take Porsche’s claim with a pinch of salt. Road tax, at £295 a year, isn’t cheap but it’s nearly half what you’d pay for a Nissan GT-R.
Sitting at the top of the 911 range, the Turbo S comes with a decent array of standard acronyms – PASM, PDCC, PDK, PAA, PCCB and PDLS. In layman’s terms you get adaptive chassis and dampers, a front splitter that deploys automatically, a dual-clutch gearbox, carbon-ceramic brakes and adaptive bi-xenon headlights.
However, a Nissan GT-R is similarly equipped, marginally quicker and nearly half the price. The 911’s case isn’t helped by the optional equipment list which has some questionable pricing such as the £275 yellow seat belts, £279 leather sun visors or the £1,278 emergency city braking.
Prices aside the 911 Turbo is a fantastic package of abilities that rivals are yet to match – you can lap a racetrack on a Saturday, go to the supermarket on a Sunday and commute to work on a Monday without having the need for three separate cars. If you’re in the market for a fantastically quick 2+2 coupe with the performance of a supercar and the everyday usability of a sports car there is hardly anything else that fits the remit quite like the Porsche 911 Turbo.