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Does Porsche produce the best driver's cars?

The thrill of driving is having control of a machine as if you are one. Therefore, for the best experience, the car has got to be agile, lightweight and possess enough grunt to make the driver as involved in the experience going forward as round corners. There are a lot of cars that fit that criterion. Race cars, sports cars and even hot hatches. A driver’s car needs some practicality and must be comfortable enough for uneven roads, but equipped for an exhilarating driving experience. I’ll comfortably say that track-focused cars are out of the mix.

Many readers automatically would think of a Porsche when it comes to a great sports car. Me too. But you can’t ignore the long list of alternatives. One of which is my personal favourite driver’s car. The BMW M3. One of the most practical high-performing driver’s cars out there for the street.

However, Porsche celebrated their 75th anniversary last month. You might have seen a number of events and limited-edition products. Even an Xbox Series X console. Why not?

Porsche Xbox Series X Games Gaming Console Limited Edition 75th Anniversary 2023
© Porsche AG

They had to give us (and themselves) a gift to celebrate of course. Especially as it’s also the 60th anniversary of their flagship model. The 911.

Porsche 911 S/T 992 60th Anniversary 1963 2023
© Porsche AG

What did we get?

Another limited 911. It couldn’t be any other model in their range. They had to celebrate their favourite child’s birthday somehow.

More specifically, this variant is called the Porsche 911 S/T. Only 1,963 will be produced. A nod to the year the 911 was born.

Porsche 911 S/T 992 Front Angle Black GT3
© Porsche AG

Back in 1968, the Porsche 911 Carrera T rolled off the production line. The T stands for Touring.
One year later, in 1969, Porsche created the 911 S, which had an array of motorsport-derived parts. Therefore, we can establish that the S/T is a combination of the two, arguably creating the most driver-focused production 911 ever. I like to think of it as a GT3 RS in street trim.

S/T – Street Trim. Coincidence? I think not!

The S/T has similar aesthetics to a GT3 Touring, it’s relatively subtle and understated. However, there are a lot of parts from the GT3 RS. But Porsche want to be clear. The 911 S/T is designed for the street experience, not the track.

Although the GT3 RS is perfectly capable for the road, (as it is a road car), it is engineered to perform at its best on a circuit. For those that can afford one, the GT3 RS is the top choice for track day racers. It is probably overkill for the street, especially if you never take it to the track.

The Recipe

Porsche 911 S/T 992 Rear Angle Black GT3
© Porsche AG

The S/T comes with a 4.0-litre naturally aspirated flat-six, from the GT3 RS, producing 518bhp, paired with a close-ratio six-speed manual and a short shifter thrown in for quick-shifting pleasure.
The clutch is 11kg lighter than a normal 911 unit, with a snappy single-mass flywheel, which although will make for a slightly less user-friendly experience, the gain is a very responsive engine.

The lighter clutch and flywheel are just the start of the weight loss. You’ll be glad to know that the roof, bonnet, doors, boot and wings are all carbon fibre, as well as the roll cage, seats, rear anti-roll bar and shear panel. I’m not entirely sure why the carbon roll cage was necessary for a non-track variant but it’s cool nonetheless.

Porsche 911 992 S/T Carbon Fibre Seat
© Porsche AG

That’s just the carbon parts dropping kilograms. The wheels are made from magnesium and the rear-wheel steering system has been removed.
Even the glass is thinner and the carpets have been on a diet along with the battery, thanks to an expensive but lightweight lithium-ion substitute.

This is the lightest 911 in production at 1380kg, which is 40kg lighter than a manual GT3 Touring.

Isn’t this just a 911R?

No, although Andreas Preuninger, the director of Porsche’s GT line of cars, says the S/T is in the same corner as the 991 generation 911R, with the S/T being one level above in terms of performance.

Porsche 911 S/T 992 Blue Driving Countryside
© Porsche AG

What and who is the S/T for?

The goal was to make the S/T an agile, lightweight and involving sports car that seamlessly pairs man and machine. It’s not about lap times, but the experience of an exciting drive.
This car is for those who want a bit of a sleeper with racing-derived components, whilst still being suitable for the road. It is engineered for the driver to be more in touch with the driving experience. Enhance the sensations the driver feels through the instruments of the car while shifting, turning and accelerating.

While all of this sounds dreamy, there is always a price to pay if you want something special. If you’re lucky enough to get an allocation, you’ll have to part with £231,600 ($291,650). It’s not cheap, but it is a limited version, and possibly the best one yet.

Porsche 911 S/T 992 Driving Mountains Hills Blue Countryside
© Porsche AG

That’s it then, this is the car I need?

Even though no one has driven it yet, we know it’s a great formula for a premium sports car and can be pretty confident it will live up to our expectations. Picture yourself driving the S/T in the Welsh countryside, California’s canyons or on the winding roads in the Swiss Alps. It has to be up there with one of the most thrilling and therapeutic experiences combined.

However, you don’t need a quarter of a million (and change) of your chosen currency to buy the 911 S/T just to have an amazing driving experience on meandering roads. The car sounds incredible, but heck, I’d enjoy driving plenty of other cars for a fraction of the price. If my life depended on it, I could settle with a regular GT3. I’m sure I would survive.

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