Big reveal for the Porsche 911 Carrera S Cabriolet

Lightweight aluminium delivers fuel economy without sacrificing power or prestige.
7 March, 2017
The designers at Porsche have a real challenge on their hands when reimagining the revered sports car.
Porsche's team is working to keep the "sharp, sporty and timeless" legacy of the brand while improving it for a new generation of car enthusiasts. With the Porsche 911 Carrera S Cabriolet, they've demonstrated success with the new Type 991 II while leveraging the advantages of aluminium in the vehicle manufacturing.

"The real opponent is not the other car," the company says, in a nod to its racing pedigree. Rather, it's every single gram of weight that matters – and in the case of Porsche, the company's engineers have approached the problem with a thoughtful and intelligent design mix that maximizes the material value.
"Lightweight construction is not intelligent unless the right material is used in the right place on the vehicle," Porsche adds. "That, too, is Porsche conceptual harmony. For without body rigidity, there is no agility. Likewise, driving dynamics and ride comfort are inextricably linked."
Images: Porsche
The solution relies on very thin sheets of steel to build the body shell, in several compositions that include boron-alloyed segments at the roof line and door frames. Aluminium is positioned carefully and extensively across the vehicle, and both aluminium and magnesium are used in areas that include the roof, underbody, front and rear ends, doors, wings, and both the engine and luggage compartments.
The new Porsche model saves 1.5 kilograms at the crankcase, thanks to a new aluminium alloy, and another 2 kilos by using a composite oil pan – small but strategic decisions that add up to big effect.

The end result is a vehicle that weighs in at just 1,560 kilograms, a design feat in the 911 Carrera S Cabriolet that Porsche proudly boasts has made the car the lightest in its segment. The fuel savings also are advanced by the turbocharged engine in the model line, which also makes the car more powerful.

Other key features in the new Carrera models include the six-cylinder, twin-turbo engine that produces a 420 hp driving experience with reduced torque at 500 Nm. The vehicle sports 20-inch Carrera S wheels, with more aluminium construction in the caliper brakes at both the front, with six pistons, and in the four-piston rear units.
Image: Porsche
All models in the series come with Porsche Torque Vectoring (PTV) or Porsche Torque Vectoring Plus (PTV Plus), the Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM) system, and Porsche Communication Management (PCM), which includes an online navigation module. What makes the Porsche truly distinctive, though, isn't the incorporation of legacy design elements or conversely, the next-generation construction that relies on technology and material science advances.
Image: Porsche
Rather, the Porsche is designed to be driven – and this one is fast. The top speed in the manual model is 303 kilometers per hour, which is essentially like driving a high-end and destructive hurricane completely under the driver's control. The acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h takes just 4.4 seconds, and slightly less with the storied Porsche PDK automatic transmission.

Aluminium appears in the interior too, including the paddle shifters, but it's in that driver's seat that the vehicle makes its human connection. For all the brilliant technology, this Porsche isn't really the product of lab technicians in white coats. All of the cutting edge design is meant to ensure the best performance and experience available to a driver, who can expect the responsiveness and relationship that the 911 Carrera S Cabriolet was intended for.
Banner image: Porsche