Good News! Porsche’s Manual Gearbox Is Not Dead
Prospective Carrera S and 4S owners can now request a seven-speed manual gearbox as part of “a host of new equipment options”.
The seven-speed box is now available as an alternative to the eight-speed PDK automatic provided as standard on both models, and, interestingly, will continue to be combined with Porsche’s Sport Chrono package. The latter incorporates an automatic rev-match function for smoother downshifts as well as five selectable driving modes – Normal, Sport, Sport Plus, Wet and Individual – dynamic engine mounts, and access to the Porsche Track Precision App, which allows users to record laptimes and telemetry during track days.
Interestingly, the updated Sport Chrono package also includes a new tyre temperature indicator on the instrument panel in front of the driver. Blue bars gradually fade to white when optimum temperature, and thus maximum grip, has been achieved.
As with the previous generation manual 911, Porsche Torque Vectoring (PTV) and a mechanical limited-slip differential are also fitted.
Though the news is no doubt elixir for the soul for motoring purists, the seven-speed manual option does, as one might reasonably expect, make a small dint in the performance. The 308kph top speed is unaffected in the hard top Carrera S, but 0-100kph will now take 4.2 seconds, half a second longer than the 443hp, 3-litre twin-turbo flat-six is capable of when mated to the eight-speed PDK.
Still, to offset this cavernous gulf(!), the less complex manual transmission does at least shave 35kg from the PDK-equipped Carrera S’ 1,515kg kerb weight.
The other slight drawback? The seven-speed manual is available as an alternative to the PDK “at no extra cost in European and related markets”, though it has yet to be confirmed how much extra pocket money buyers in the North American market will need to fork over.
Digging a little deeper into the pockets, prospective customers could also furnish their Carrera S/4S with the new Leather Package 930, an homage to the 930-era 911 Turbo, complete with quilted panels for the doors and seat centres.
Porsche’s new Smartlift is another worthy box to tick. The electrohydraulic system on the front axle automatically increases front ground clearance by around 40mm as required at locations “where the vehicle is driven regularly.” Just press a button, the location is stored in the GPS, and the front end will raises and lowers automatically. Hey, you’re spending upwards of $117K and/or $124K for your manual Carrera S/4s, you’ll want to avoid those teeth-gnashing graunching noises emanating from the front lip at all costs.
*Images courtesy of Porsche