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2013 Porsche 911 Carrera 4/Carrera 4S - 2012 Paris Auto Show Preview

By KBB.com Editors on August 27, 2012 2:06 PM
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Making their grand entrance in Paris, the 2013 Porsche 911 Carrera 4 and the even-hotter 911 Carrera 4S add the extra confidence and capability of all-wheel drive to what is already recognized as one of the world's greatest sportscars. Like the rear-drive 911 Carrera introduced at last-year's Frankfurt Auto show, these latest additions to the family also will be available in Coupe and Cabriolet body styles. They'll also be introducing some new tech touches that will become available throughout the entire 911 family.

Building directly off of the basic Gen VII 911 platform, the new Carrera 4/4S contingent share virtually all of the lightweight design structure and numerous mechanical elements with their rear-drive siblings. As with previous generation models, the cars also feature expanded rear bodywork that sees their fenderwells extended by nearly an inch on either side to accommodate the fitment of wider rear tires. The latest Carrera4/4S also sport a new take on the standard 911 taillight treatment and incorporate a new transverse element that spans the upper rear fascia to connect the two elements.

In addition to being fitted with the latest iteration of the automaker's sophisticated active all-wheel-drive system PTM (Porsche Traction Management), both Carrera 4 models get their motivation from the 911's standard 3.4-liter/350-horsepower flat-6 engine while the 4S duo shares the 911 S-spec 3.8-liter counterpart that makes 400 horses. Transmission choices include a standard 7-speed manual or Porsche's 7-speed PDK double-clutch automatic gearbox.

Like their rear-drive siblings, the new Carrera 4/4S models match excellent performance with superb economy. That feat is helped considerably by the fact that the generational changeover has seen each shed about 140 pounds compared to its predecessor model, enhancing handling agility as well as trimming straight-line acceleration times. The 0-60 mph intervals for the Carrera 4 Coupe and Cabriolet are a brisk 4.3 and 4.5 seconds, respectively, with top speeds peaking at 177 and 175 mph. When fitted with the PDK transmission, EPA city/highway figures run 20/28 mpg for hard-shell car and 20/27 mpg for the drop-top. The sprint specs and terminal velocities for the Carrera4 S duo are even more impressive - 3.9/4.1 ticks and 185/183 mph - while comparative economy ratings only decline to 19/26 for both variants.

One more improvement of note specific to the 2013 Porsche 911 Carrera 4 and 4S is a new instrument cluster menu that provides a real-time display of the front/rear power split being meted out by the PTM AWD system. Two other features making their debut on these models are a new sliding glass sunroof and a tweak to the optional Sport Chrono Package available on all 911 models that will provide automatic double-declutching on downshifts for all cars fitted with the 7-speed manual transmission. Finally, with the introduction of the Carrera 4/4S, Porsche is making its Adaptive Cruise Control optional across the entire 911 lineup. When paired with the PDK transmission, the ACC system will add Porsche Active Safe (PAS) functionality, which helps to prevent front-end collisions.

On sale in Europe later this fall and coming to America next February, the 2013 Porsche 911 Carrera 4 Coupe will open at $91,980 and the 911 Carrera 4 Cabriolet will start at $103,880 while the 2031 Porsche 911 Carrera 4S will commence at $106,580 and the Carrera 4S Cabriolet will begin at $118,480.

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