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    Is the 981 a "worthwhile" upgrade over the 987?

    been thinking about this. it cost me about £30k to change my 4 year old, 29k miles, owned from new, 987.1 RS60 Spyder for a new mildly specced 981S.
     
    Was it worth it? Bearing in mind £30k earns not very much interest at the bank, and bearing in mind my love of all things flat 6 ...
     

    Yes, definitely worth it. 981 is a quantum leap ahead in all areas (possibly not the case with 987.2 with DFi engines). Absolutely everything is substantially and noticeably improved.
     

    Even steering, for me. When going briskly, the steering is as fantastic and precise (perhaps more so) as ever. I quite like the fact that it no longer jiggles about as much as before.
     

    The non PASM ride is stunningly comfortable (occasionally it gets slightly rattled on the nastiest roads, but nothing serious), yet the handling is incredibly sporty and agile. It feels utterly alive and connected on the road. Superb achievement. The chassis is so stiff you really do not notice any flex at all even on the bumpiest roads. What you do notice is the incredible confidence into, through and out of bends, at quite crazy speeds. The balance and poise is of a higher order. You almost do not have to brake. 987 is club class, 981 is first class. Other cars on the road appear to be designed for going straight only.
     

    The engine is wonderful. Extremely free revving, eager and more responsive. It feels appreciably more powerful and stronger too. And I have yet to take it past 4.5k rpm.
     

    The non PSE exhaust is music to my ears: it's a more mechanical, rather than rorty, slightly boomy exhaust sound that my PSE equipped RS60 produced. It makes its presence felt more than adequately. I had the roof down in country lanes last Saturday .. it sounded amazing, air cooled almost, and for me, plenty vocal enough. It’s an honest unamplified sound. Love it.
     

    With the roof up, it is much much quieter and refined. You can hear the BOSE sound so much better, and there is no need to have music loud to drown the wind and road noise out. I was considering getting a Cayman as I had after 4 years, grown tired of the noise and roar with roof up on my 987. I can now have my cake, eat it and eat it again and again.
     

    Gearbox: love the manual gearbox. Precise, perfectly damped and not at all notchy even when cold. As the gearstick is that much closer to you, it feels racier and quicker. Utter dream. At first I thought it felt too light, but now I think the feel and weighting is spot on. I had OEM short shift on my RS60, which was more recalcitrant.

     
    Looks: I took my 981 on a sea kayaking trip. 4 of my sea kayaking mates who have no interest in cars was all over mine. 1 was even stroking it!! They all wanted a ride, which unfortunately for them time did not allow for. I like the rear 3/4 view the best. And I love the size, design and intricacy of my standard 19” wheels. The paint on the wheels also seem to be of higher quality than on 987 wheels.

     
    Things I don't like:

    1. seat belt buckle strap no longer on seats – passenger seat buckle hits the plastic part (previously carpet) on ‘b’ pillar and rattles. A few sticky felt pads has thankfully sorted this out.

     
    2. the roof is not well designed for rain -- when I opened the door after the car was in heavy rain, droplets fell repeatedly onto the switch for opening the front boot. A serious design issue.

     
    3. the gearstick's position at times makes it difficult to reach the heating and ac controls.

     
    4. the misaligned near side bumper.

     

    Re: Is the 981 a "worthwhile" upgrade over the 987?

    Thanks for sharing your impressions - v glad you're enjoying your 981 experience ... Hopefully, some good weather will allow you to enjoy the top-down experience to the full :)


    --


    997.1 C2S
     GT Silver/Cocoa, -20mm/LSD, PSE, short shifter, SportDesign rims, Zuffenhausen pickup, BMW Z4 2.5i Roadster Sterling Grey/Red


    Re: Is the 981 a "worthwhile" upgrade over the 987?

    Thanks for your excellent report on the honeymoon experiences with your 981S, sfo Smiley The lecture helps to overcome  the wait time Smiley Would love to have the 981S with me at my vacation place in the Austrian Alps - great roads....Smiley

    Was astonished to observe a 981S factory car (white of course Smiley) obviously doing some tests on these fantastic roads (car with test equipment antennas, followed by a factory 991S with respectful distance Smiley). Maybe they already test the upcoming "special editions" Smiley


    --

    public roads: Porsche 987 S Seal/Cocoa, toll road Smiley : Porsche 997 GT3 Arctic/Black


    Re: Is the 981 a "worthwhile" upgrade over the 987?

    easy_rider911:

    Thanks for sharing your impressions - v glad you're enjoying your 981 experience ... Hopefully, some good weather will allow you to enjoy the top-down experience to the full :)

    at long as it's not raining, it's 981 roof down weather :)


    Re: Is the 981 a "worthwhile" upgrade over the 987?

    Porsche-Jeck:

    Was astonished to observe a 981S factory car (white of course Smiley) obviously doing some tests on these 

    they must be still doing QA on the 981!


    Re: Is the 981 a "worthwhile" upgrade over the 987?

    sfo:
    The engine is wonderful. Extremely free revving, eager and more responsive. It feels appreciably more powerful and stronger too. And I have yet to take it past 4.5k rpm.
     

    My 981 is past the break in now, so I have taken it to the rev limit. If you haven't been past 4500 yet, you're in for a serious treat when you do. The sound at 7600 is amazing... Smiley

    Having driven my own 981 for a few weeks now, I can only agree with what you write, very good summary!

    This is definately a more mature car than the 987, it has improved on all levels! I have the same experience when it comes to sound level with top up. I was on a "mini vacation trip" to Germany for a few days (hence hitting the break in limit so fast! Smiley ) so I have done some long stints on the Autobahn and it's really a comfortable drive during such conditions.

    I was invited to Porsche Driver event by my dealer, a half-day training with professional instructors. We did some serious exercises involving braking, slalom course etc, so I have pushed the car quite a bit. No problem with steering feel due to the electric steering, the car is extremely precise and responsive, it was a joy to throw it around the slalom course!

     


    Re: Is the 981 a "worthwhile" upgrade over the 987?

    Kelderek:
     

    My 981 is past the break in now, so I have taken it to the rev limit. If you haven't been past 4500 yet, you're in for a serious treat when you do. The sound at 7600 is amazing... Smiley

    I was invited to Porsche Driver event by my dealer, a half-day training with professional instructors.

     

     It's quite fun slowly increasing the rev limit .. as I have passed 500 miles, I am now 'allowed' to go to 5k rpm ...

    I have yet to book my Porsche Driving Experience at Silverstone as part of buying a new 981. I hope you did not use your own car on track!


    Re: Is the 981 a "worthwhile" upgrade over the 987?

    I used my own car, but this was not really a track event, it was more intended to get you acquainted with the different systems and to make you a safer driver. Everybody used their own cars. At that point, I had over 2000 km on it, so it was safe to push it a little 

    The most serious thing we did was the slalom course. I think I mastered it pretty well, at least I didn't embarrass myself. Then I got a to ride along with the chief instructor, a former rallye champion, in a Carrera GTS. After that, I realized that I have quite a lot to learn yet! 


    Re: Is the 981 a "worthwhile" upgrade over the 987?

    The PDE event is run at Porsche's own facility and uses their cars :)


     
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