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    October Excellence Turbo review

    I have not seen this posted. It seems to be one of the more balanced and credible rewiews to date.

    Heading out of the pits, it's clear the 997 Turbo is a real step forward in terms of thrust. The new, Variable Turbo Geometry turbochargers provide boost all over the place. A meaty wedge of torque starts just past idle and builds from there, the flat six making all its peak torque of 460 lb-ft from two to five grand on the tach. Another 45 lb-ft of torque is available for up to ten seconds if you select the optional Sport Chrono system's Sport mode and pin the throttle.

    Do so and a tiny arrow illuminates below the tach as the turbos give you another 0.2 bar of boost. You won't be staring at the dash, though. Things start moving quickly on overboost, and you soon realize that ten seconds is an eternity in this car - an eternity in which you can cover a lot of ground. This latest twin-turbo 3.6 is a gem, and that can only bode well for the next GT2. That said, turbo lag is still present, detectable on initial tip-in. As always, it's best minimized by dipping into the throttle lightly at first.

    Not that you need to go easy on the gas. The way the 997 Turbo keys into the pavement and positively catapults you forward is totally addictive. Its new Porsche Traction Management AWD system uses a slick, computer-controlled electro-magnetic center diff that can funnel all of the engine's torque to the front tires if necessary. Thus, PTM offers a real improvement over the viscous diff still used in 997 C4s - a setup that can only send 5-40 percent of the engine's torque to the front axles.

    The Glen is a fine place to use this 911's acceleration. Carry your speed from Turn 1 through three turns on your way to the Bus Stop - a right leading into a chicane at the end of a long straight - like a pro and the digital speedo spools to 150 mph. Our pace isn't quite there, but it's not too far off. Heavy braking is needed for the Bus Stop, but this car's PCCB II ceramic-composite brakes - with 15-inch C-GT rotors - are powerful, well-balanced, and feelsome. But, since every Turbo on hand is wearing PCCBs, we can't speak to the differences between them and the standard steelies.

    The 997 Turbo's acceleration is fierce, its braking incredible. But we're not convinced PASM improves its handling compared to the 996 Turbo. PASM does a decent job of combatting excess body motion in its firmer Sport mode, but hard braking and initial turn-in reveal the difficulty of keeping this 911's weight in check. There's a lot of roll, as if the car could use stiffer springs to go along with PASM's stiffer shock valving. On the plus side, the new Turbo doesn't require the kind of trailbraking some 997s do in order to stick its nose on the way into turns. Its massive mechanical grip through turns and incredible power-transfer abilities on the way out of them make the new Turbo very, very fast on a race track.

    Time to swap for a Turbo Tiptronic. It's soon clear that the Tip is slicker than ever. Downshifts now call up perfect throttle blips to match revs while shifts are swifter and more graceful. This "smart" automatic still causes weight-transfer problems in some cornering situations, however, particularly if your driving becomes less aggressive - even for a moment. The auto mode's intelligent mapping defaults to a lazier schedule too quickly, one that may wake up and downshift on the way through a turn. We experienced this in an uphill right-hander, where Tiptronic chose to stay in third upon corner entry. As we kept feathering in throttle, the Tip decided to drop a gear to second - which upset the car's balance.

    Pulling the console-mounted lever into Manual solves that problem, but the Tip still ignores single-gear downshift commands at times - even if making the shift won't cause the engine to exceed redline. As with so many systems that make decisions for the driver, Tiptronic will continue to make friends and enemies. Count us in the latter camp due to Tiptronic's still less-than-predictable control responses. We can't deny the Tip's effectiveness on track, though. The pro racers all seem to prefer it, saying it removes the task of shifting - allowing for more concentration on the proper line. Of course, they're right. But if Tiptronic was perfect, a true paddle-shift 911 gearbox wouldn't be on the way.

    Re: October Excellence Turbo review

    They must be idiots. The tip rULeZ!

    Re: October Excellence Turbo review

    eclou said:
    They must be idiots. The tip rULeZ!

    YMMV. Not everyone likes the idea of getting a Tip.

    Re: October Excellence Turbo review

    I tested the Tip and the manual on a track for a few laps this Tuesday.
    I was impressed by the quality of the Tip, it did most of the time choose the perfect gear when in D... doing it manually was more confusing to me.

    A few times, I still had that ' automatic' feeling ... I am sure that with more experience I would learn how to use the Tip much better.

    BUT... the manual was much more pleasant and challenging to me.I also like it much better when doing a stop -start.

    I would not get the Tip , even if I would be slower, manual still is more satisfying to me.
    PDK would be interesting to me.

    On the track I was trying to follow Simona ( just finished 4th in the formula BMW in the US).. she had the manual and I was with the tip... I ended up way behind of course

    So again, it is all a matter of driver and personal preference, comparing professional ring times with the use of a ' normal' driver, just doesn' t make any sense.



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