Enjoy the search for your first Porsche

posted Jul 12, 2009, 10:01 AM by Quentin Ballard Tremeer   [ updated Jul 22, 2009, 11:29 AM by Q BT ]
There is little difference in feel between the 993 Carrera 4 Targa and the 964. The enthusiasts tell me the 993 can drive “beyond the limit” in a corner. I am not sure mere mortals, with sane minds, have the courage to find this handling limit.
The 964 felt plenty fast in the corner. I was VERY happy the back didn’t slide out. When I say fast enough, I mean the 964C2 (manual). The tiptronic felt like I was driving a 2.4GLE Cressida…. no cornering fireworks AT ALL.
I used to do all the analysis on car cost and performance at home. Then I would go and test drive two cars and buy the one I liked best….. that was till I wanted to buy a Porsche and realized the benefit of sampling the “whole range” before making a decision.
The guy from my local Porsche dealer was kind enough to lend me a 1989 964 Carrera 2 for the day. Ok, I was serious about buying it, so that helped.
If you want respect on the road, this is it. People JUMP out of your way. It is fast, handles on rails and feels like a 2009 model car.
A Porsche with headlights burning, for some reason, yet unknown to me, makes the road clear…. No other car I have driven … including a Ferrari …..has done this for me…. you feel you bought the road...964 is much more refined and easy to drive than the 911SC. It is however not as much fun.
Having driven two 911 SC’s I can say with certainly, they are as much fun as the 2002 Mini Copper S I owned. The 1980’s 911 Turbo (930) however is GREAT in a straight line BUT a death trap in corners. You have to be SO careful the turbo doesn’t kick in while cornering and SHOOT you into the nearest wall.
I have mixed feelings about  the 996. I drove Claudia Henkels old car. No I don’t know her, just the guy who had traded her car in for her (996 Carrera 2 Tiptronc in midnight blue). The brakes where shot at the time, making it difficult to get a good feeling for how she enters a corner BUT putting your foot down on the curve meant an instant tail sliding experience. More exciting than a 964C2 with a manual box, but more than any man or traction control can handle in the wet I am sure.
Overall a thoroughly entertaining and exciting few evenings and weekends, driving and learning about some of the best engineering to ever come out of Germany.