Tuesday, May 23, 2017

1917: The Beginnings of the Jordan Motor Car Company

I just became acquainted with the magazine Automobile Topics.  This periodical contains many advertisements reflective of the WWI period and one that really struck me was a 4 page statement that announced the start-up of the Jordan Automobile Company. Jordan, as many auto historians know, pioneered modern advertising, particularly with the copy and image from the ad "Somewhere West of Laramie." Ned Jordan was the master of advertising, getting his start at NCR in Dayton before moving on to other endeavors. Note this ad reveals Jordan's focus on women as key to the purchase of an automobile; of color, an aspect fully developed in low priced cars in the early 1920s with the discovery of DUCO and pyroxylin paints; and of interior details, such as the texture of leather and fabrics. The Jordan was a fully assembled car, using parts made by many suppliers.  

Note on the first page Jordan's understanding of the motor vehicle as a statement of individuality, and how the car expresses individual tastes and status. And color -- how colors remind us of nature, as in the case of green, and sunrise and sunset, as with reds.

 Note on page two Jordan's understanding of the rakish line of a car, and how important lines are in terms of making an impression on a would-be customer. And then there are dimensions, how a woman does not want to sit in a seat where her knees are up. For a man, the control of a car is important, and thus the tilt of the steering wheel, instrumentation and controls, must be just right.

Branding is important to the Jordan -- its suppliers in effect determine the quality of the product, along with a final chassis design that emphasizes balance.  Comparison with an imaginary "other car,"  possessing less features closes the deal.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Another Auto History Legend: the closed car of the 1920s

Historical "facts" are often passed on from generation to generation in automotive history.  Take my narrative on the coming of closed car bodies in the 1920s, from chapter 5 of my The Automobile and American Life:

Almost immediately after World War I, public demand increased dramatically for a closed car that would no longer be a seasonal pleasure vehicle, but rather all-weather transportation. The few closed body cars built before WWI were extremely expensive and the work of custom coach builders. This rise in demand during the 1920s, coupled with a remarkable number of concurrent technical innovations in plate glass and steel manufacture, resulted in a revolution in production methods, productivity and economies of scale. William J. Abernathy has carefully characterized the transformation that took place on the shop floor and assembly line, the first fruits of which occurred when in 1921 Hudson first mass-produced a closed car. The transition away from rag tops (the word convertible was first used in 1927 and officially added to the Society of Automotive Engineers lexicon in 1928) was rapid and contributed to a venerable prodigy of production by the end of the 1920s, as depicted in Table 4.
Table 4. Transition from Open to Closed Cars
Open Cars (%)
Closed Cars (%)
Source:  John Gunnell, Convertibles: The Complete Story (Blue Ridge Summit, PA: 1984), 129.

            Significant improvements in the quality of sheet steel were certainly part of this story, but so too were developments in welding technology, the development of sound deadening materials, and construction of the single unit body. All of these innovations and far more were pioneered by the Budd Manufacturing Company. Typical of the Budd All-Steel ads of the mid-1920s was one that appeared in the Saturday Evening Post in 1926, with the headline “Put the Protection of All-Steel Between You and the Risks of the Road.”43 Like the safety inherent in a home, the steel body protected its occupants, especially women and children. The ad continued, “Self preservation is the first law on Nature. Today, with 19,000,000 cars crowding the highways . . . With the need for safer motoring more urgent than ever before . . . America is turning to the All-Steel Body. It is the greatest protection ever devised to prevent injury in the case of accident. See that your next car is so equipped!”  A second 1926 Budd ad, like the first mentioned, depicted a closed car traveling down a busy city street but in its own clear lane, separated on both sides by huge sheets of steel that prevented the masses of cars on each side from touching the car and harming its occupants. The headline for this ad read in part, “The protection which it [the all-steel body] brings to you and to your families is priceless – yet the cars which have it cost no more than those which do not.”44 Clearly, the message was that Budd-engineered closed body cars were worth the money spent.

Note the second sentence, underlined italicized and in red. Then check out this ad in a 1917 issue of Auto Topics:

Note that my highlighted sentence is inconsistent with above image!  A good reason for the appearance of the 2nd edition of my The Automobile and American Life, slated for the second half of 2017!

2017 Professor Ferdinand Porsche Prize for Motor Vehicle Innovation

  • Stuttgart, May 22, 2017 - the Professor Ferdinand Porsche Prize was awarded by Vienna University of Technology to Anke Kleinschmit, Head of Corporate Research & Sustainability and Environmental Officer for Daimler AG, for the development of the innovative exhaust gas aftertreatment system in the new four-cylinder diesel engine.

The automotive engineering prize is awarded once every two years to people who have made a significant contribution to the development of the motor vehicle with their innovation(s). The four-cylinder diesel engine (referred to internally as OM 654), which has been developed under the leadership of Bernhard Heil, is designed to meet future emissions legislation (RDE – Real Driving Emissions) and stands out for its exemplary efficiency and low nitrogen oxide emissions. This is made possible by, amongst other features, a newly-developed stepped-bowl combustion process, exhaust treatment technologies configured directly on the engine together with multiway exhaust gas recirculation using cooled high-pressure and low-pressure technology. This innovative technology package significantly reduces the engine's untreated emissions across all characteristics.
The four-cylinder diesel engine has already earned a good reputation for its performance out on the road. The engineers for the industry magazine auto, motor und sport "were surprised by the four-cylinder's extraordinarily low nitrogen oxide emissions*". And ADAC commented, after road tests of the diesel engine: "The exhaust gas treatment works extremely well, regardless of whether the vehicle's on the test station or driving in real traffic.**"
Since 1977 the Professor Ferdinand Porsche Prize has been acknowledged as one of the most prestigious and – at 50,000 euros – one of the best-endowed awards for pioneering research and development work in the area of vehicle technology. Vienna University of Technology has awarded the prize, endowed by Louise Piech, the daughter of Professor Ferdinand Porsche, to Mercedes‑B enz engineers before: for the development of ABS, the airbag, of ESP as well as the first large-scale series production in the world of the Li-On battery technology in a hybrid vehicle – all of them milestones in automotive technology that have had a lasting and beneficial effect.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

2017 Porsche GT3 Supercup Season is Underway

In the new Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, Michael Ammermüller (D/Lechner MSG Racing Team) celebrated a perfect start to the season with two victories. On Saturday, he relegated Porsche Junior Dennis Olsen (N/Walter Lechner Racing Team) and Daniel Cammish (Lechner MSG Racing Team) to positions two and three; on Sunday Olsen again finished on second ahead of Porsche Junior Matt Campbell (AUS/Fach Auto Tech). Thanks to Ammermüller’s two wins, Germany leads the newly created Nations League. “It couldn’t have gone better, but in the last laps I came under huge pressure from Dennis. I didn’t make any mistakes and held on to my lead until the end,” explained Ammermüller.
Spectators on the well-filled grandstands were treated to a spectacular and action-packed second round. Porsche Junior Campbell started from pole position, however the 22-year-old Australian was not able hold onto his lead and had relinquish the front spot to Cammish in the first lap. With an adroit overtaking manoeuvre, Ammermüller swept to the front of the field and Cammish fell back to position four. Over the next twelve laps, the trio Ammermüller, Campbell and Olsen formed a spearhead at the front and battled for honours using every trick in the book. “I got off the line well but I opted for the wrong outside racing line and lost positions. After that I had to really fight hard. Finishing twice in second is a very good start to the season,” concluded Olsen. His junior colleague Campbell was pleased, as well: “I very happy with third place, especially since not everything ran as well as it could have. It’s my first Supercup season and you notice how incredibly close the competition is in this series. I’m excited to see how things continue.”

Germany holds the lead with 40 points

Cammish followed Ammermüller, Olsen and Campbell over the line in fourth. Contesting his second Supercup season, Dylan Pereira (L/Lechner Racing Middle East) from Luxembourg secured his best result so far with fifth. Guest driver Tom Oliphant (GB/Lechner Racing Middle East) saw the flag in sixth place. The best amateur driver on the 4.655-kilometre racetrack was Roar Lindland (N/MRS Cup-Racing). In the newly created Nations League, Germany holds the lead after two of eleven races with 40 points. Norway ranks second with 36 points, with Great Britain in third (30 points) followed by Australia (28 points).
Monaco hosts the next round on the Supercup calendar from 25 to 28 May: Round three of the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup will be contested on the legendary racetrack of Monaco. The 3.340-kilometre street circuit is a highlight on the race calendar, not least due to the unusual location of the paddock: All the vehicles stand under the big-top of the permanent circus tent Chapiteau de Fontvieille right next to the heliport. “Unfortunately I haven’t yet experienced a win at Monaco. This year I hope I have a little more luck in qualifying and then I’d like to bring home my first victory,” declared Ammermüller, who travels to the Principality as the championship leader after Barcelona.
A look back at race 1
Michael Ammermüller has won the season-opening round of the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup in Barcelona/Spain on Saturday evening. The German from Rotthalmünster finished on first place for the Lechner MSG Racing Team and also secured maximum points towards the newly-created Nations League. Second place went to Porsche Junior Dennis Olsen (Walter Lechner Racing Team) for Norway, with Daniel Cammish (Lechner MSG Racing Team) from Great Britain bringing home points for position three and his home country. “The race ran perfectly for me. Following the short safety car phase after the first lap I was able to pull away from the field and bring victory home. I’m thrilled that I was able to earn 20 points for Germany today,” says Ammermüller.
Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup Barcelona, 2017, Porsche AG

Start at the Circuit de Catalunya in Barcelona

Thirty-one pilots took off into the 2017 season in the new Porsche 911 GT3 Cup on the Circuit de Catalunya. In Saturday’s qualifying, Porsche Junior Matt Campbell (Fach Auto Tech) posted pole position. The Australian, however, fluffed his start and after the first lap was running in position six. From second on the grid, Ammermüller inherited the lead, which he defended over 14 laps to the flag. Behind the seasoned Porsche specialist, a fierce battle for the other grid spots raged. Cammish in second place came under repeated attacks from Olsen and it was only in the twelfth lap that the youngster managed to squeeze past Cammish. “I put him under constant pressure. Daniel made a mistake and I overtook him. It’s a great feeling to stand on the podium in the Supercup,” said Olsen.

Drivers from 18 countries tackle the races

Cammish ultimately finished in third on the 4.655-kilometre circuit. “I wanted to find my rhythm, but Dennis hampered me from doing this. Still, I’m thrilled to be on the podium.” In fourth place, Robert Lukas (PL/Olimp Racing by Lukas Motorsport) collected points for Poland. Porsche Junior Matt Campbell (Fach Auto Tech), who won the 2016 Porsche Carrera Cup Australia and advanced to the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup, brought home fifth place. “Unfortunately I botched my start a bit. I let the clutch out too soon and almost choked my engine. I’ve learnt my lesson; I have to work on my start. Hopefully it’ll go better for me in Sunday’s race,” explained Campbell. His British teammate Josh Webster was flagged off as sixth. Victory in the amateur category went to Egidio Perfetti (NL/Momo-Megatron Team Partrax).
The grid at the Circuit de Catalunya features the most international lineup in the 25-year history of the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup. Drivers from 18 countries tackle the races throughout the anniversary year, with 16 of them contesting the newly-created Nations League. “We’ve seen huge interest in the Supercup this season and we’re thrilled that many newcomers from the national one-make race series and new teams are joining the experienced regulars,” says Oliver Schwab, Manager of the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup.
Race results
Race 1:
1. Michael Ammermüller (D/Lechner MSG Racing Team)
2. Dennis Olsen (N/Walter Lechner Racing Team)
3. Daniel Cammish (GB/Lechner MSG Racing Team)
4. Robert Lukas (PL/Olimp Racing by Lukas Motorsport)
5. Matt Campbell (AUS/Fach Auto Tech)
6. Josh Webster (GB/Fach Auto Tech)
7. Mattia Drudi (I/Dinamic Motorsport)
8. Dylan Pereira (L/Lechner Racing Middle East)
Race 2 :
1. Michael Ammermüller (D/Lechner MSG Racing Team)
2. Dennis Olsen (N/Walter Lechner Racing Team)
3. Matt Campbell (AUS/Fach Auto Tech)
4. Daniel Cammish (GB/Lechner MSG Racing Team)
5. Dylan Pereira (L/Lechner Racing Middle East)
6. Tom Oliphant (GB/Lechner Racing Middle East)
7. Philip Morin (S/Martinet by Almeras)
8. Daniele die Amato (I/Dinamic Motorsport)
Nations League:
1. Germany, 40 points
2. Norway, 36 points
3. Great Britain, 30 points
4. Australia, 28 points
5. Poland, 23 points
The next race of the the Supercup will be contested from 25 to 28 May in Monaco.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Key Fob Jammers -- An Easy Way to get at the Valuables in your Car

These devices are readily available over the internet and will block your fob from locking your car. Once you walk away thinking your car is locked, thieves can take what they want from the car, or use another device to start it and drive away.

The VW "Dieselgate" Story Continues

Hi folks -- I love to think that business ethics as taught at universities is nothing more than political correctness detached from reality. Money trumps (maybe an inappropriate word right now) DOING THE RIGHT THING 9 TIMES OUT OF TEN.
FROM: the local.de
German prosecutors said Wednesday they had opened a new investigation into Volkswagen chief executive Matthias Müller and others over market manipulation in the wake of the carmaker's 'dieselgate' scandal.
"The accused are suspected of knowingly delaying telling shareholders about the financial consequences for Porsche SE of software manipulation in diesel vehicles by Volkswagen AG," the prosecutors in southwestern city Stuttgart said.
Holding company Porsche SE -  separate from VW subsidiary Porsche AG - owns a controlling stake in the world's largest carmaker, with its stable of 12 brands ranging from luxury Audi to generalist Skoda.
Along with Müller, former VW CEO Martin Winterkorn and Porsche SE chairman Hans-Dieter Poetsch are also suspected of failing to share information about the emissions cheating affecting 11 million cars revealed in 2015.
Investigators opened the dossier in February, in response to charges levelled by German financial supervisor BaFin in summer 2016.
It is the first time Müller has been targeted by prosecutors over market manipulation, while Winterkorn, Poetsch - a former chief financial officer at VW - and VW brand chief Herbert Diess already face probes.
Volkswagen faces an array of legal challenges in Germany and worldwide relating to its software, designed to fool regulatory nitrogen oxide emissions tests.
Shareholders and car buyers have launched suits seeking compensation, while prosecutors in Brunswick, north Germany, are investigating 37 individuals at the company for fraud

Tuesday, May 16, 2017




In order to encourage research and writing effort among university students in the area of automotive history, the Society confers its annual award for the best student paper in the auto history field.  The award is named for Richard Scharchburg, the late Professor of History at Kettering University, eminent automotive historian, and past vice president of the Society of Automotive Historians. Persons submitting papers must be enrolled at educational institutions (upper-class undergraduate or graduate level) at the time of submission.  This competition is international in scope, but papers must be in the English language.  Papers already published or scheduled for publication will not be accepted.

Manuscripts should not exceed 10,000 words, and should be double-spaced.  An abstract is requested.  Judging criteria include clear statement of purpose and testable hypothesis, accuracy and thoroughness of research, originality of the research, documentation, quality and extent of bibliographic resources, and writing style.  Diagrams, graphs, or photographs may be included.  Submissions are to be electronic, in Word 1997-2003 format or pdf files only, to the e-mail address below.

Possible subjects include but are not limited to historical aspects of automobile companies and their leaders, regulation of the auto industry, financial and economic aspects of the industry, the social effects of the automobile, highway development, environmental matters, and automotive marketing, design, engineering and safety.

A cover letter should be included stating the student’s address, school, program, advisor, and stage in studies.  The student should indicate how the paper submitted will relate to his or her professional future.  Submissions must e-mail dated by June 10, 2017.  All papers submitted will be acknowledged.

Recent Previous Award Winners:
2016 – Alison Kreitzer, University of Delaware
2015 – Patrick Nicolello, University of Dayton
2014 – Sarah Seo, Princeton University
2013 -- John Emerson Mohr, Auburn University
2012—Samuel Kling, Northwestern  University
2011 – Andrew Mabon, James Madison University
2010 – No award
2009 – Peter Cajka, Marquette University

Upon recommendation of the judges, the winning paper will considered for publication in the Society’s Automotive History Review.   The award consists of a plaque and a cash prize of $500.00.

Submissions should be sent to:      John Heitmann, Chair, Student Awards Committee
                                                Department of History
                                                University of Dayton                    Tel: 937-229-2803
                                                300 College Park                        Fax: 937-229-2816

                                                Dayton, OH 45469-1540                e-mail: Jheitmann1@udayton.edu

Saturday, May 13, 2017

The Assembly of the 1 millionth Porsche in Photographs

Hi folks -- the color of this car is the same as my 1971 911T Targa!

1 Million Porsche 911s: An Evolution over Seven Variants

1963: The original 911 
911 2,0 Coupé from 1965, Porsche AG

911 2,0 Coupé from 1965

As the successor to the Porsche 356, the 911 won the hearts of sports car enthusiasts from the outset. The prototype was first unveiled at the Frankfurt IAA Motor Show in 1963 as the 901, and was renamed the 911 for its market launch in 1964. Its air-cooled six-cylinder flat engine with two-litre displacement delivered 130 hp, giving it an impressive top speed of 210 km per hour. If you wanted to take things a little slower, you could also opt for the four-cylinder Porsche 912 from 1965. In 1966, Porsche presented the 160 hp 911 S, which was the first to feature forged alloy wheels from Fuchs. The 911 Targa, with its distinctive stainless steel roll-over bar, made its debut in late 1966 as the world’s first ever safety cabriolet. The semi-automatic Sportomatic four-speed transmission joined the line-up in 1967. And with the 911 T, and the later E and S variants, Porsche became the first German manufacturer to comply with strict US exhaust emission control regulations. The Porsche 911 became more and more powerful as displacement increased, initially to 2.2 litres (1969) and later to 2.4 (1971). The 911 Carrera RS 2.7 of 1972 with a 210 hp engine and weighing less than 1000 kg remains the epitome of a dream car to this day. Its characteristic “ducktail” was the world’s first rear spoiler on a production vehicle.
Number of vehicles produced: 81,100
1973: G series is a success
911 Carrera 2,7 Coupé from 1973, Porsche AG

911 Carrera 2,7 Coupé from 1973

A best-seller goes into production: Ten years after its premiere, the engineers at Porsche gave the 911 its first thorough makeover. The “G model” was produced from 1973 to 1989, longer than any other 911 generation. It featured prominent bellows bumpers, an innovation designed to meet the latest crash test standards in the United States. Occupant protection was further improved by three-point safety belts as standard equipment, as well as integrated headrests. One of the most important milestones in the 911 saga was the 1974 unveiling of the first Porsche 911 Turbo with a three-litre 260 hp engine and enormous rear spoiler. With its unique blend of luxury and performance, the Turbo became synonymous with the Porsche mystique. The next performance jump came in 1977 with the 911 Turbo 3.3 equipped with charge-air cooler. At 300 hp it was the best in its class. In 1983, the naturally aspirated 911 Carrera superseded the SC; with a 3.2 litre 231 hp engine, it became a favourite collectors’ item. From 1982, lovers of fresh air could also order the 911 as a Cabriolet. The 911 Carrera Speedster, launched in 1989, was evocative of previous legendary Porsche vehicles.
Number of vehicles produced: 198,414
1988: 964 introduces all-wheel drive
911 Carrera 4 3,6 Coupé from 1989, Porsche AG

911 Carrera 4 3,6 Coupé from 1989

Just when automotive experts were predicting the imminent end of an era, in 1988 Porsche came out with the 911 Carrera 4 (964). After fifteen years of production, the 911 platform was radically revised with 85 per cent new components, giving Porsche a modern and sustainable vehicle. Its air-cooled 3.6 litre flat engine delivered 250 hp. Externally, the 964 differed only slightly from its predecessors – in its aerodynamic polyurethane bumpers and automatically extending rear spoiler – but technically it was almost entirely different. The new model was designed to captivate drivers, not only with sporty performance but also with enhanced comfort. It came with ABS, Tiptronic, power steering and airbags, and rode on a completely redesigned chassis with light alloy control arms and coil springs instead of the previous torsion-bar suspension. A revolutionary member of the new 911 line right from the start was the all-wheel drive Carrera 4 model. The rear-wheel-drive Carrera 2 came on the market just six months later. In addition to the Carrera Coupé, Cabriolet and Targa versions, starting in 1990 customers could also order the 964 Turbo. Initially powered by the proven 3.3 litre flat engine, in 1992 the Turbo was upgraded to include a more powerful 360 hp 3.6 litre power unit. Today, the 911 Carrera RS, 911 Turbo S, and 911 Carrera 2 Speedster are particularly in demand among collectors.
Number of vehicles produced: 74,008
1993: 993 – first version with a biturbo engine
911 Carrera 3,6 Coupé from 1993, Porsche AG

911 Carrera 3,6 Coupé from 1993

The 911 with the internal design number 993 remains the one true love of many a Porsche driver. The remarkably pleasing design has much to do with this. The integrated bumpers underscore the smooth elegance of its styling. The front section is lower-slung than on the earlier models, made possible by a switch from round to polyellipsoidal headlights. The 993 quickly gained a reputation for exceptional dependability and reliability. It was also agile, as the first 911 with a newly designed aluminium chassis. The Turbo version was the first to have a biturbo engine, giving it the lowest-emission standard automotive powertrain in the world in 1995. The hollow-spoke aluminium wheels, never before used on any car, were yet another innovation of the all-wheel drive Turbo version. The Porsche 911 GT2 was aimed at the sports car purist who cherished the thrill of high speeds. An electric glass roof that slid under the rear window was one of the innovations of the 911 Targa. But the real reason why dyed-in-the-wool Porsche enthusiasts still revere the 993 is that this model, produced from 1993 to 1998, was the last 911 with an air-cooled engine.
Number of vehicles produced: 67,535
1997: 996 with water cooling
911 Carrera 3,4 Coupé from 1997, Porsche AG

911 Carrera 3,4 Coupé from 1997

The 996, which rolled off the assembly line from 1997 to 2005, represented a major turning point in the history of the 911. It retained all the character of its classic heritage, but was an entirely new car. This comprehensively redesigned generation was the first to be driven by a water-cooled flat engine. Thanks to its four-valve cylinder heads it achieved 300 hp and broke new ground in terms of reduced emissions, noise, and fuel consumption. The exterior design was a reinterpretation of the 911’s classic line, but with a lower drag coefficient (cd value) of 0.30. The lines of the 996 were also a result of component sharing with Porsche’s successful Boxster model. Its most obvious exterior feature were the headlights with integrated direction indicators – at first controversial but later copied by many other manufacturers. On the inside, drivers experienced an entirely new cockpit. Driving comfort now also played a greater role alongside the typical sporty characteristics. With the 996, Porsche launched an unprecedented product offensive with a whole series of new variations. The 911 GT3 became one of the highlights of the model range in 1999, keeping the tradition of the Carrera RS alive. The 911 GT2, the first car equipped with ceramic brakes as standard, was marketed as an extreme sports vehicle from the autumn of 2000.
Number of vehicles produced: 179,163
2004: 997 caters to individual preferences
911 Carrera 3,6 Coupé from 2004, Porsche AG

911 Carrera 3,6 Coupé from 2004

In July 2004, Porsche unveiled the new generation 911 Carrera and 911 Carrera S models, referred to internally as the 997. The clear oval headlights with separate blinkers in the front end were a visual return to older 911 models, but the 997 offered more than just style. It was a high-performance vehicle, with a 3.6 litre flat engine that turned out 325 hp, while the new 3.8 litre engine of the Carrera S managed an incredible 355 hp. The chassis was also substantially reworked, and the Carrera S came with Porsche Active Suspension Management as standard. In 2006, Porsche introduced the 911 Turbo, the first petrol-operated series-produced car to include a turbocharger with variable turbine geometry. Model improvements in the autumn of 2008 made the 997 even more efficient thanks to direct fuel injection and a double-clutch transmission. Never before had the 911 series made such extensive allowances to suit drivers’ individual preferences, and with Carrera, Targa, Cabriolet, rear or all-wheel drive, Turbo, GTS, special models, and road versions of GT racing cars, the 911 family ultimately comprised 24 model variants.
Number of vehicles produced: 215,092
2011: 991 sets technological standards 
911 Carrera 3,4 Coupé from 2011, Porsche AG

911 Carrera 3,4 Coupé from 2011

Internally known as the 991, this sports car embodied the greatest engineering leap in the history of the 911. For generations the benchmark in its class, this 911 generation set the bar yet another notch higher in terms both of performance and efficiency. A completely new chassis with modified wheelbase, greater track width and beefier tyres, plus an ergonomically optimised interior produced an even sportier and more comfortable driving sensation. In engineering terms this 911 was all about Porsche Intelligent Performance: even lower fuel consumption and even more power – created, for instance, by reducing the engine size to 3.4 litres on the base Carrera model (yet still delivering 5 hp more than the 997/II) and using a hybrid construction method (steel/aluminium), which led to a considerable reduction in weight. Also new: Porsche Dynamic Chassis Control and the manual 7-speed transmission. The design of the 991 likewise met with high critical acclaim. With its low, stretched silhouette, its bristling surfaces and precisely shaped details, the Porsche 911 Carrera – in the seventh generation as before – continued to be unmistakably a 911 and was thus once more setting new standards in automotive design.
In 2013, the new Targa was added to the 911 family. The latest generation of this extravagant 911 variant combined the classic Targa idea with advanced roof convenience. Just like the legendary original Targa, it featured the distinctive wide bar in place of B-pillars, a removable front roof section and a wraparound rear window without a C-pillar. But unlike the classic 911 Targa, the roof segment could open and close at the push of a button. The fully automatic roof system stowed the Targa top behind the rear seat in spectacular fashion.
The new 2015 Porsche 911 cemented its position as the best in its class in terms of performance and efficiency. The development of a turbocharged flat engine gave the world’s best-selling sports car a significant boost in power as well as considerably lower fuel consumption. The new 3.0-litre biturbo charged six-cylinder flat engine developed 370 hp (272 kW) in the 911 Carrera and 420 hp (309 kW) in the 911 Carrera S. In both cases, this represented a power boost of 20 hp over the prior model, with just under twelve per cent less fuel consumption. The 911 Carrera represented a quantum leap in innovation, featuring a sharp new look outside and Porsche Communication Management with multi-touch screen inside. Above all, however, the new 911 raised the benchmark considerably in the sports car world: more power, the enhanced Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM) chassis and optional rear axle steering improved the best time of the 911 on the Nürburgring-Nordschleife to 7.30 minutes. Ten seconds faster than its predecessor and with an even greater lead over the competition.
Number of vehicles produced until the end of the 2016 model year: 152,659