997 Porsche 911 Carrera GTS article highlights:
- The 2011-2012 911 Carrera GTS introduced the modern GTS trim level formula – more standard performance for a reasonable premium – to Porsche cars
- It’s not as fast as the Turbo or as raw as the GT3, but the naturally aspirated 997 Porsche GTS is more rousing than the former and more civil than the latter
- The GTS is one of the more desirable versions of the esteemed 997, meaning it hasn’t lost much in value
Ask 10 Porsche fans what the best 911 trim is and you’ll get 11 different answers. Speed freaks, for example, will likely point to the Turbo, but driving connoisseurs revere the GT3 altar. For everyday performance, however, the 911 GTS is just the ticket. But this does not only apply to the latest model. It’s about a decade old, but the 997 Porsche 911 Carrera GTS is still a sweetly satisfying sports car.
The 997 created the modern formula of the Porsche 911 Carrera GTS
|2011-2012 ‘997.2’ Porsche 911 Carrera GTS|
|engine||3.8 liter boxer engine|
|torque||310 lb ft|
|transfers||Six-speed manual gearbox
Seven-speed PDK dual-clutch automatic
|curb weight||3272 pounds (PDK)|
|0-60mph time||4.3 seconds (PDK)|
The original Porsche GTS was not a 911 but a race car, the 1963 904 Carrera GTS. But much like the name Carrera itself, it takes on a new meaning in the brand’s modern lexicon. Today “GTS” refers to the equipment between the S and Turbo, which upgrades the S with a few selected performance features at a bargain price. And it’s not 911 specific; even the Cayenne and Taycan have GTS trims. However, a 911 started the trend.
In 2011, the 997 Porsche 911 was nearing the end of its product cycle. But before that, Porsche decided to send it off with a well-appointed grab bag. Or rather, two bags: the Porsche 911 Carrera GTS and Carrera 4 GTS 2011-2012. And since then, every GTS model has followed the recipe of these two cars.
The recipe for the 997 Porsche 911 Carrera GTS goes like this. First, take a 997.2 Carrera S and add 23 hp and the Sport Chrono Package and Porsche Active Suspension Management. Next up are the Carrera 4 S’s wider rear fenders and rear track. Then hit a sports steering wheel, sports exhaust, GT3-style Alcantara interior trim, some Porsche Aerokit exterior parts, and the Turbo S’s center-lock racing wheels. Oh, and paint the back seats, but leave them as a free option, engine trend adds.
In short, the 997 Porsche 911 Carrera GTS is basically a well-appointed Carrera S. While not inaccurate, that description also sells this sports car a bit short.
The Porsche 911 Carrera GTS 2011-2012 is a 997 Greatest Hits that hits the spot
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There are several reasons why the 997 still has many fans in the Porsche 911 community. For one thing, the later 997.2 cars got rid of that pesky IMS stock. Second, aside from the actual turbo (and GT2), the 997 cars aren’t supercharged. Even if the 997 started to steer the 911 towards more electronics and luxury, it’s still a largely analog sports car. And in the real world, the 2011-2012 Porsche 911 Carrera GTS is the best distillation of all those strengths.
Yes, the 997 Porsche 911 GTS doesn’t rev as high as the GT3 RS 4.0, nor is it as fast as the turbo. However, there are no turbos to deaden the bark or throttle response of this 7300-rpm flat-six engine. And it sounds better than the standard 997 Carrera S, MT Remarks. Additionally, unless your daily commute involves a racetrack, the GT3 is over the top and not particularly comfortable. However, the GTS can be a docile highway cruiser one minute and a sharp canyon carver the next.
Its steering is sharp, precise, and crisp with feedback, and it doesn’t need carbon-ceramic discs to stop with fade-free authority. The PDK transmission is also telepathically responsive, while manual rowing is a joy. Plus, the wider rear track and standard PASM make the 997 Porsche GTS even more brilliant on twisty roads without sacrificing the smoothness of its handling. And because it’s not as powerful as the turbo, you’re more involved in the speed building process, which is the whole point of a sports car.
when it was new MT called the 2011 Porsche 911 Carrera GTS “the must-have 911”. And that statement is still true a decade later.
This 911 sweet spot hasn’t lost much in value
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Another reason for the praise of the 2011-2012 Porsche 911 Carrera GTS was its price. Although more expensive than the Carrera S, it was cheaper than the Turbo and GT3. And if you equip a normal S to GTS level, you would end up paying more.
While the 997 GTS is still cheaper than a 997 Turbo, that doesn’t make it cheap. As one of the most desirable versions of a popular and reliable 911, the 2011-2012 Carrera GTS hasn’t lost much in value. Even a convertible in good condition, the less desirable version, is easily a $60,000 car, Hagerty says. And a coupe in excellent condition that started at $104,000 in 2011 is worth $90,000 to $100,000.
In other words, it practically did not write off. But it’s not like 911s lose much in value anyway. And if solid residual value is proof of anything, it’s desirability. As I said, the 997 Porsche GTS is still convincing.
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