Porsche 911/996 Owners Review

Porsche 911/996 Owners Review

I've now owned my Porsche 911 Carrera 2 for 6 months so it seems appropriate to give a longer term owner's review of the Porsche 996 model and how it has fared in the first few months of ownership.

Long term review of Porsche 996 ownership
Porsche 911 996 Variant Long Term Owner Review
The first thing that becomes apparent over a period of time is that the Porsche 911 is effectively two different cars when you drive it. The car that starts from cold is very different to the car that is well warmed up and this is a big change from previous cars that I've owned. While cold the Porsche 911 feels very tight and changing gear is very stiff, but once the car has warmed sufficiently the gearchange is very slick, very precise and the gearbox feels far smoother. The same applies across the car even down to the seats becoming more supple as they warm up and increase the comfort. If you only ever drove the car cold you would have a very different impression from using it when warm.

The fuel economy of the Porsche 911 has been very good so far considering the performance that the driving provides. Over nearly 3000 miles the average has been 25mpg and the maximum achieved on a journey to Germany was around 30mpg despite driving at top motorway speeds.

The 996 driving position is very comfortable and now that I have switched back to original 996 seats they fit the car better. The Porsche 997 seats that the car had been fitted with at purchase were too tall for the 996 body and caught the roof trim and sun visor when moved forward. If you never moved the seats this would not be a problem but we bought the car as a daily vehicle too so the seats do need to move to get the children in or to stow any items of luggage.

In various reviews it is mentioned that the Porsche 996 has lost the fun and quirkiness that previous 911 models such as the 993 had and that it no longer requires any special driving style to drive it. That may be the case for later Porsche 996 models with PSM (Porsche Stability Management) but the early 996 without PSM can certainly catch you out if you are not careful. The handling is excellent in good road conditions but with slightly wet roads the car can still slip. The handling of the car is excellent and the steering very sharp and precise with great feel. The steering feel can be slightly too much at motorway speeds with plenty of feedback over any rough road surface but that may improve once the tracking & wheel balance have been adjusted.

The running costs of the Porsche 996 Carrera have also been surprisingly good so far and the reliability of it as a 12 year old vehicle has impressed. The first MOT in our ownership passed with no failures or advisories and the 3000 miles we have covered have been without issues.

The looks of the Porsche 911 are still something I enjoy every time I see the car. The rear is slightly better than the front as the headlights don't have the same asthetics as the previous 993 or later Porsche 997 models.

Porsche 911 Carrera (996 Variant) Long Term Review

The real reason for getting a Porsche 911 is the performance and the Carrera 2 doesn't disappoint in that respect. Once warmed up the car accelerates effortlessly and rapidly to 60 miles per hour and beyond. The acceleration is stunning and way beyond any previous car I have owned such as a VW Golf GTI. Unfortunately there are few public roads even in Germany where the full performance of the Porsche 996 can be explored.

Porsche 996 GT3 Alloy wheels
Porsche 996 GT3 Alloy wheels

Next on the to-do list is arranging for the 4 wheel tracking to be carried out but it looks like the plan for that may be postponed with a predicted storm approaching the UK next week on the day I had organised.

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