Taking it easy, in the Porsche 911 Carrera 4 GTS

In Car Reviews, Porsche by Tim Barnes-Clay

I was followed by the long arm of the law the other day.

Not because the cops like me or anything – I suspect it was more to do with the shiny silver and black Porsche 911 I was behind the wheel of.

Strangely enough, I’m not in the habit of driving like a boy racer now I’m 44, and getting a ban for speeding isn’t a sensible career move if you’re a motoring journalist. So, doing 25mph through town, with my five year old son buckled in to his booster chair in the front passenger seat, was hardly the most villainous thing to be doing on a Sunday morning.

I’m not being unreasonable, the police were going the other way and then did a 360 around the roundabout and pursued me for the next three miles, before deciding I wasn’t a danger to the good people of the East Midlands.

It could be my cynicism, and I’m not suggesting these boys in blue were squandering our taxes, but I do think they had more of an interest in the blisteringly beautiful Carrera GTS. And who can blame them? It’s a hotty – whichever colour it’s shrouded in.

The 911, under the spotlight here, has far more to it than appearances, though. The GTS badge stands for Gran Turismo Sport – and, on this model, brings a 10mm decrease in ride height. There are also an extra 30 horses roped to the 3.8-litre flat six lump, producing 424bhp in total. Other trimmings tossed in to give the GTS extra joie de vivre include bi-xenon lamps, sat-nav, limited slip diff and Porsche Torque Vectoring.

The rear of this 911 is wider, too, giving it a really hostile stance – especially with matt black 20-inch wheels fitted at each corner. They look tremendous, particularly against silver. Porsche anoraks will also note that the four exhaust pipes and headlight surrounds are finished in the same shade.

The cabin is mainstream Porsche design, but highlights are the GTS badges spun into the seats, and body coloured stitching on the Alcantara trim. The carbon fibre on the doors, dash, seat base and console looks striking, too.

On the move, the GTS feels heaps more sporting than a standard Carrera S. I drove the big-ticket Carrera 4 GTS that was fitted with Porsche’s optional seven-speed, double-clutch transmission. It’s the gearbox to have, because it provides a perfect shift between manual and automatic control, so you lose virtually no power when changing gear. The ‘4’, referred to above, simply indicates that that the car has a four-wheel-drive system. This delivers terrific traction, allowing you to get on the power quicker out of a corner.

Indeed, the performance of the sports coupe is wonderful. With the quick changing auto transmission, the 911 Carrera 4 GTS drives as awesomely as it looks. The ride and handling is sharp, while the accuracy of the steering is second to none.

Zero to 62mph arrives in just 4.0 seconds and the top speed is 188mph. The sport exhaust adds roars and grumbles and those quad tailpipes emit a crackly yowl during gear shifts. The 911 absorbs bumps and mid-range pull is addictive. Certainly, the car’s performance dallies above legal limits enough to keep you on your toes.

Quite genuinely, the Porsche 911 Carrera 4 GTS is everything a sports coupe should be. It’s expensive, though, so you’ll need deep pockets to afford a new one.

Porsche 911 Carrera 4 GTS

hover to read the specs

The lowdown

Price on the road as tested: £95,862.00

Engine: 3800cc, 6-cylinder

Transmission: PDK, All-Wheel Drive

Max Engine Power: 430hp@7500rpm

Torque: 440Nm@5750rpm

0-62mph: 4.0seconds

Top Speed: 188mph

CO2 Emissions: 233g/km

Combined Fuel: 32.5mpg
Power √ Looks √ Kicks √ Traction √ Pricey X

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About the Author

Tim Barnes-Clay


Tim Barnes-Clay qualified as a journalist in 1994 and is a member of the Midland Group of Motoring Writers. He initially trained in broadcast journalism and has worked as a reporter and news reader at various radio stations in East Anglia and the Midlands. He has also been a motoring journalist for the Mirror Group’s L!ve TV cable network and a presenter, reporter and producer at ITV Central in Birmingham. Tim is now an automotive writer, focusing on car reviews. He has media accreditation with all motor manufacturers’ press offices, and this enables him to test drive the latest cars. He also attends new vehicle press launches at home and abroad.

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