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    My first impressions

    I picked up my new 997S in trade for a 996 Targa about a week ago, and these are my first impressions:

    1. The new chassis is fantastic. The car has more grip and is more planted, yet the ride is more forgiving than the stnd suspension setup on the 996. The grip that this car has is mind blowing, yet it just swallows up bumps and road imperfections. The whole car is appreciably stiffer than the Targa too.

    2. She looks gorgeous. Subtle differences add up to a night and day difference compared to the 996 styling. I can't stop looking at her.

    3. The brakes, even though brand new, are simply amazing. I can't imagine what PCCB's have to offer.

    4. The engine definitely needs some breaking in. I am so far unimpressed with the power of the 3.8, but I think in about 3000 more km, it'll start to open up more.

    5. The Bose stereo is a big improvement over the base stereo I had in the 996, but it still isn't that great, and definitely shouldn't be something you have to pay extra for in a car of this caliber. The base stereo in my Jetta is better than the Bose upgrade in the 997S.

    6. The steering is great. I was worried about the variable ratio, but I'm now a believer.

    7. I am unimpressed with PASM sport mode. It seems to just make the whole car bounce more.

    8. I hate the wart just as I thought I would, but I wouldn't have the car without sport chrono, just so that I could get the intermediate PSM setting. I haven't really used sport mode much yet, but my sense is that the throttle response has been set back in normal mode (back compared to the throttle response on my 996), while sport is really standard (ie. like the throttle response on my 996). I think this really is clever but manipulative marketing on Porsche's part.

    9. Michelins: I like them more than the Pirelli's I had on m 996. They seem quieter, and the whole car seems like it grips better (granted, that's probably due to more than just the tires).

    10. The clutch is more civilized, though the shifter is more vague and less precise, despite shorter throws. I had an easier time appreciating the 320 horses in the clutch action on the 996 than I do appreciating the 355 horses in the clutch action on the 997. Even though it (the clutch) seems more Honda than Porsche to me, I can live with it.

    11. Sport seats (not Adaptive): seem about 30% more supportive than the standard seats I had in the 996 with no price paid in comfort. In fact, my wife couldn't tolerate the standard 996 seats b/c of back pain after about 20 minutes. She loves the new ones.

    12. Wish she had a dipstick.

    13. At least up to 4,500 rpm, the exhaust note is dull, and definietle less exciting than the 996. I know that this engine really sings above 5,000 though . . .

    I have a long road trip planned to help break her in and I'll provide my impressions of the 4,500-7,200 rpm range then.

    Overall extremely pleased despite exhaust rattle at startup from cold, and weird bounce in PASM sport mode. My only regret is that the -20 mm suspension isn't available here (and I simply couldn't wait any longer to see if it ever would be).

    Re: My first impressions

    Nice car, Bullet! Congrats!

    Re: #4 above - my 997 C4S has opened up very nicely at 1,600 miles. It was pretty stiff until I got to 1,200-1,300. The motor just needs some time.

    Interesting comments re:eGas response curves with Sport ON / OFF... I haven't driven a 996 in a long time and can't comment - but I know that I ALWAYS have Sport == ON in my car. Interesting marketing approach by Porsche NA. <g>

    Good luck, be safe, enjoy!

    -don

    Re: My first impressions

    Thank you for sharing your impressions, enjoy her to the fullest and let us know how you feel after the break in

    Re: My first impressions

    Thanks a lot Silver Bullet- very nice review! And of course, your baby is F I N E- looks like there's a face off!

    Congratulatons!

    Re: My first impressions

    Congratulations Silver Bullet, good review.

    I too have had mine just a few days (picked her up on Tuesday, only 200miles on the clock so far)...my thoughts as follows:

    1. The grip is fantastic, the car is so planted.

    2. Steering feedback is good, but slightly down on my old v8 Exsprit, which i have to say had the best power assisted steering feel in any car i've driven.

    3. -20mm - I'm very lucky to be in the UK, and ordered this option. I ordered it without even test driving one - but like you i didn't like the feel of PASM in sport mode...and I can tell you -20mm is absolutely superb...I really think Porsche needs to come out with the official reason why it isn't selling it in other markets - it's stunningly good - just the right balance of comfort, response, grip, etc. Only downside is i've already hear a scraping sound going over speed bumps in London - bl**dy things. However, it is only the rubber / plastic dam which hangs down a few inches.

    4. Bose agree - it's okay, but god knows what the sound is like without it. Pleased I ordered it but an extra Pounds800!

    5. Sports Exhaust - PSE - good sound, but too quiet for me - then again i was used to a sports exhaust on my v8 which was slightly illegal in terms of noise, and gave nice pops / bangs and occasional flame on overrun. I'm hoping the PSE will get better (read louder) as it burns in..though next step will be the much discussed hack to see how much difference it makes.

    6. It's not giving up too much power yet, but i have been babying it for the first 200miles, i.e. strictly below 4k.

    7. ...and the best bit was on the day i collected the car, i was driving home and a guy pulled up next to me in a new M6 and actually said when he saw mine he wished he'd got the 997 instead... you can't ask for more than that!

    8. Agree what's the deal on the dipstick? I'm in the technology business but really don't like not having one - mabye it's a sign i'm getting old!

    Ash
    997 C2S Seal Grey
    -20mm, PSE, Bose, Chrono, etc. etc.

    Re: My first impressions

    Congratulations on your new car:
    It is always so interesting to read other people's impressions. Thanks!

    Re: My first impressions

    Congrats SB - when are you going to post the full spec (and some pictures)?

    Agree with the PASM - I wish I had got the Sports suspension - you can get it here in the UK. But I would like to emphasise I'm still *very* happy with the car. I look forward to every time I get into her.

    SoS.

    Re: My first impressions

    Quote:
    Silver Bullet said:
    Overall extremely pleased despite exhaust rattle at startup from cold...



    That's normal.

    Congratulations on your new car.

    Re: My first impressions

    Congrats and welcome to the 997 club Car looks fabulous silver bullet. I've got 11000 pluc km on my car and the engine has opened up considerably after 5000km. Have a great weekend.

    Re: My first impressions

    Congrats on your new car! Good health to enjoy it!

    Re: My first impressions

    Thanks for all the kind words. Pics to come next week.

    Regarding the rattle at start up - I don't think it's normal. There was a thread about the exact same issue started by someone else last week where I posted a detailed description of it. Judging by the response, I think it's probably a pretty common problem.

    Re: My first impressions

    I have 997CS approx 3 weeks. Had 996CS 2001

    Exhaust sound much better.

    Engine feels great, wants to be over 3K rpms

    Brakes fine,

    Steering, less feel.

    Ride, for comfort better, for feeling the car and road in turns, noticeable worse. Don't have a comfort on where I stand re the limits of where I can go with the rear end.

    Shifts much shorter. Does have a bit of light feel, more Japanese, but like the shorter throws.

    Stereo is worlds better.

    Finish of interior materials in a different league.

    Runs slighly tumbly at idle, 750rpms.

    For last year drove an E55, fast but very poor quality and no handling.

    Nothing like a convertible at 90+mph that feels great and handles well.

    Good luck with yours.

    2ndtime

    Re: My first impressions

    Ok - I'm up to 2,000 km now, and I've been very good about varying the engine speeds in a variety of gears. I finally decided to enjoy a little high RPM fun last night. This car seems MUCH more powerful than my 996 Targa, and above 5,000 RPM is where it really shines. Nothing but laughs giggles 'n' grins. I honestly don't thank that I need any more torque to be happy (but I said that once before and wound up retracting my words . . . )

    I'm not sure why, but I don't notice the Varioram "kicking in" at around 3200 RPM the way I did on the Targa.

    It's nice having the oil temp gauge, and interestingly, the oil temp lags behind the coolant temp in reaching operating temp. I like to always be gentle on the engine before it reaches operating temp, and I used to rely on the coolant temp in the 996, but this is clearly more accurate.

    So far, this car drinks more gas than the 996 Targa did, but presumably that has something to do with the break-in, and the larger displaccement as well (mostly).

    There is a rattle that is road surface dependent and it seems to come from the center console or possibly the passenger seat. It sounds like there's a metal Rubik's cube bouncing around in the hand brake mechanism. Any ideas or similar experiences?

    All in all, wonderful car. Arctic silver does SUCH a great job of showing off her lines and curves in all kinds of lighting. What a BABE!

    Re: My first impressions

    S W E E T, SB! Another happy customer!


    Re: My first impressions

    Quote:
    Silver Bullet said:
    It sounds like there's a metal Rubik's cube bouncing around in the hand brake mechanism. Any ideas or similar experiences?



    Maybe a Porsche assembly-line worker was playing with one and left it under the seat. Or it could be change in the ashtray?

    Re: My first impressions

    Some pics from my break-in drive accross the Canadian prairies. I took great care to let her warm up nicely, and I varied the RPM up to 4,200 for the first 1500 km, after which I started to gently venture up to 6,000 RPM from time to time. By 3,000 km, she was singing gloriously all the way up to 7,200.

    Re: My first impressions

    The rattle in the centre console around the handbrake is really bad. It's not related to engine speed, and only comes about on a rough road surface at around 110-150 km/h. It's as if the car has to vibrate at a certain frequency to bring it on. There is nothing in the storage cmpt or ashtray. Any ideas?

    Re: My first impressions

    She's really opened up in the first 3,000 km. Acceleration is fantastic.

    Re: My first impressions

    The brakes are phenomenal.

    Re: My first impressions

    I'm very pleased with Arctic, as it shows off her beautiful curves and lines perfectly.

    Re: My first impressions

    The ride with the 19's and PASM is very comfortable.

    Re: My first impressions

    And PASM sport suspension is fantastic, on a smooth road.

    Re: My first impressions

    Next pics will be in the Canadian Rockies!

    Re: My first impressions

    Wow... that counry is EMPTY!!! Great pics SB!
    -Joost-

    Re: My first impressions

    Thanks for the pics. Arctic Silver is THE BEST color for Porsche. That's why you see so many that color. Nevertheless, I will never order any other color. Classic, beautiful without being flashy. Definitely shows off the curves.

    Re: My first impressions

    I realy like your last 3 photos !!!! Great views on the open plains ....But where are the mountains hiding ?

    Re: My first impressions

    Sweet pics! Congrats on your new car.

    Re: My first impressions

    congrats! looking great! and thanks for sharing your interesting impressions!

    Re: My first impressions

    Quote:
    Silver Bullet said:
    The rattle in the centre console around the handbrake is really bad. It's not related to engine speed, and only comes about on a rough road surface at around 110-150 km/h. It's as if the car has to vibrate at a certain frequency to bring it on. There is nothing in the storage cmpt or ashtray. Any ideas?



    Any solution to the rattle yet?

    I get a very similar metallic vibration in the same areas - spasmodic, but very annoying.

    Re: My first impressions

    Silverblullet:

    Congrat. No worries, you will love it even more. Trust me I had an 03 Targa and an 05 C4S and the more I drive the 997S the more I like it. The 3.8 is noticeably faster than the 996, rev it up and you will be amazed

     
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