Driven | Porsche 911 Carrera T

Porsche took the covers off the 911 Carrera T in 2018 where it sat quite nicely between the 365 hp (272 kW) Carrera and 414 hp (308 kW) Carrera S.

It packs the same 365 hp (272 kW) twin-turbocharged flat-six as the base Carrera (991.2) but makes use of the adaptive suspension (PASM Sport) from the Carrera GTS, a Sport Exhaust system with black exhaust tips, a shorter final-drive ratio and a limited-slip rear differential (if you have the seven-speed manual transmission – we had the PDK).

On the styling front you get a set of rocker-panel decals, Titanium Grey 20-inch wheels and Agate Grey side mirrors. Weight was dropped with the use of nylon pull straps instead of internal door handles, the stripping of some sound insulation as well as lightweight glass for the rear window.

As mentioned the unit we had made use of the seven-speed PDK dual-clutch gearbox which allows the lightweight 911 to sprint to 100 km/h in 4.2 seconds and go on to a top speed of 291 km/h.

So what’s it like to live with (albeit 5 days) and drive? For starters, you will need to get used to a fair bit of noise. A lower level of sound insulation subjects the driver to a substantial amount of road noise and with the sports exhaust coming as standard, the faster you go, the more racket makes its way through the Carrera T’s thinner shell. Even out on the open road, you still feel imperfections in the road owing to the stiffer suspension tune from the PASM Sport.

In a normal car, these changes would not exactly add to the appeal of the vehicle but this is where the 911 Carrera T is different. It is not a normal car and therefore by removing some of the 911’s refinement, Porsche has managed to bring some of the GT3’s rawness into the entry-level Carrera. You will experience a much more vivid connection with the car and you will be rewarded with so much more feedback compared to the regular Carrera.

If you prefer the experience-over-substance approach, you are better off selecting one with the manual transmission as the shortened shift lever is a pleasure to muscle through the gears and adds to the overall engagement. That isn’t to say the PDK isn’t as excellent here as it is in every other Porsche sports-car application as it only slightly reduces that vivid connection.

Obviously, if you want to set the fastest lap possible, then the PDK is the better tool with quicker shifts and quicker acceleration.

The Carrera T hits a sweet spot between degradation of its ride comfort and refinement and the best part is this Stuttgart creation also comes without a crazy-high price and that makes it the best value in the 911 lineup today.

This car is for those who hunger for more road feel and the chance to send a Porsche flat-six to redline and for the rewarding pops and burbles on overrun that pierce the cabin (see video at bottom of post).

Less is more. Less weight and, above all, more driving pleasure.

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