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Is the Porsche Motorsport magic running out?

3 weeks ago

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Writer:

Dan Prosser | Ti co-founder

Date:

29 January 2024

It became a running joke. If the magazine comparison test featured one of those missiles by the wizards in the Motorsport department at Porsche, you didn’t need to read the article to know what had won. With their huge wings, showy stripes, sticky tyres and howling engines, racy 911s and Caymans hoovered up prizes and trophies like Novak Djokovic at an under-12s tennis tournament.

The outcome of such group tests became so predictable many readers wondered if Porsche and the car mags had arrived at some sort of mutually beneficial understanding. Were those test cars delivered not only with a petrol tank filled to the brim with super-unleaded, but also a well-stuffed brown envelope placed neatly into the glovebox? (For the avoidance of all doubt: absolutely not.) For the longest time it seemed Porsche Motorsport could do no wrong, as though this hegemony would run and run and run…

Porsches carrying GT4 and GT3 RS badging haven’t stopped winning those accolades, but we’ve noticed something at The Intercooler; a subtle shift in the direction the wind blows. Last summer, we compared three apparently very similar 911s that turned out to be quite different. All were coupés with manual transmissions and rear-drive – and only two seats, as it happens, a quirk of how two of the three cars has been specified by the Porsche GB press office – but against all expectations, it wasn’t the hardcore GT3 Touring that drove away from South Wales a winner, but the cheapest, least powerful of the bunch. The wonderful Carrera T upstaged its more potent siblings in some style.

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