I have a 997 first registered in December 2006. This car goes like stuff off a shovel. Great fun but to my surprise not that much more fun to drive than my wifes MX5 which has more character. Steering is a overly twitchy. An 18KG weight in the luggage compartment seems optimum to fix that. The stability control system can be a bit worrying as it allows the car to get too sideways before intervening. It is the poorest build quality car that I have had in the last 15 years. Dodgy gear change even after a replacement gearbox, trim and window rattles, unpredictable oil consumption, and other annoying things. It is not a good car for long distances because the noise level from the engine and tyres and the hard ride make it tiring. It is not worth the very high price compared to a Boxster which does nearly everything a 911 does at a much more realistic cost.
I had a Carrera 4 for about a year and got rid of it. Don’t get me wrong, it is a fantastic car in many ways. It has great looks, is very reliable, fairly practical, has excellent performance and fantastic handling and feel.
So why did I get rid of it? Well, driving the 911 is like playing the most exciting computer game you can imagine, but in God Mode, you know, where you have all of the weapons with unlimited ammo and health.
You see, when in God mode you can still marvel at the game itself but there is no adrenalin because your character is completely safe and that’s the Carrera 4’s Achilles heal.
When driving the car you never really feel that you are in full control because, however well or badly you drive, the electronic wizardry will ensure that everything is calm and controlled without you knowing that you have had anything to do with it.
The only slight sign of imperfection is the occasional ‘pendulum’ feeling from the back end as that large lump of metal, known as the engine, swings about. It’s not a pleasant driving sensation but you just know that nothing bad is ever going to happen.
So at the end of the day if you are a keen driver, it’s a beautiful car without soul. Instead, try the standard Carrera 2 as it hasn’t got soo much software in the way of the driving experience.
However if you are the type of driver who wants to pretend that you are Lewis Hamilton on speed then the Carrera 4 might just be what you’ve been looking for.
i've owned several 911. The turbo is the one to have, mine is now 4 years old and recently went round all the high end garages to try out something different. looked at astons etc. in the end i signed up for another 911 turbo and decided to go by a cheap second hand 5 series estate for longer work journeys. Have not driven a more sure footed exciting car than the turbo. once you own one of these you'll have to find something else to save your money for because you'll have the ultimate driving experience.
I got my 997 C2 tiptronic in December 2005, and so far I've really enjoyed it. FirHowever, there are a few problems, such as interior rattles and squeaks. It went back to the dealer to have these adjusted a few times, and eventually they eradicated the vast majority. Many people would not have bothered, I'm just very fussy!
Running costs are OK - insurance for me is not too bad, considering the cost and performance of the car. Servicing is great - around £400 every two years or 24,000miles. That really is good in my opinion. Petrol is not so cheap though - I get around 18mpg. Admittedly, I do a lot of town driving, but I should be getting over 20mpg at least.
As for the drive, the car is awesome. The C2 acceleration is fast enough for most (although those coming from a Turbo/GT3 may find it a little slow) and the 911 has now evolved into such a balanced vehicle in the bends, even though so much weight is in the back. In this 911 you can have real confidence that you won't lose the back end (and if you do, the excellent PSM lends a welcome hand).
In conclusion, Porsche has made the 911 even better than its brilliant 996 predecessor. It's well put together (bar a few sqeaks), has generous equipment levels, a stimulating drive and every-day practicality make this, in my opinion, the best car you can buy. The only way I could better it is by getting a 997 Turbo.
997, the legend evolves!
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