I wouldn’t call it rain per se, more like the air is sagging under several gigatonnes of moisture. There’s barely a puddle, but the roads are offering all the adhesion of a greased otter, and I appear to have early onset cataracts because visibility is limited to the few feet in front of my face. Out there, somewhere, is the B4560 littered with sheep that skipped the health and safety briefing and other traffic, probably. Yet I’m still getting frothy at the prospect of the three mud-splattered cars in front of me: all turbocharged, all 4WD, all with different degrees of insanity hunkered over the rear axle. Three marker posts in the sprawling 911 range.
Picking a Porsche 911 to buy these days is like choosing which member of the Swedish volleyball team to take out for a drink; it’s the kind of problem you’re happy to have, there isn’t a dud among them, but there is a positive swarm of possible engine, body and chassis combinations that require some careful navigation. Especially so since the updated GTS 991.2 family, now sporting the thrustier new turbocharged 3.0-litre flat-six, has arrived.
Taking into account the Coupes, Cabriolets and Targas, two- and four-wheel-drive versions, S and non-S power outputs, and now the GTS brood (available in every bodystyle, with two- and four-wheel drive, PDK and manual), we counted 19 variants in total. And that’s not including the limited-run unicorns. So is the GTS, as it was with the 997 and pre-facelift 991, still the darling of the range? Is it still the perfect amalgam of gently massaged performance and real-world, public road usability, or has the torquier turbocharged engine squeezed the gap between standard Carrera and Turbo to the point where the GTS has been rendered obsolete?
Photography: Lee Brimble
This feature was originally published in issue 293 of Top Gear magazine