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    Targa 4 & Targa 4S Test drive

    Last week I was in Portugal near Faro to test drive the new 997 Targa 4 and Targa 4S.

    All my comments will be in comparison to the 996 Targa that is my daily driver. This test drive was the first contact for me with the 997...

    The 997 Targa will only come with 4WD, there will be no 2WD (it is official).

    Porsche produced a total of 5,000 996 Targa and hope they will be able to sell more 997 ....
    The Targa will reach dealers on Nov 4th and will hit the market on Nov 18th worldwide.

    There is a quantum leap in terms of roadhandling between the 996 Targa and the 997 Targa 4 and 4S. This is coming mainly from 4 elements:
    - Wider body +82mm (vs 996)
    - Softer shock absorbers BUT far less roll.
    - A tiny bit less weight for the Targa roof -1.9kg (vs 996) (total weight of 52kg) which is better for the center of gravity.
    - 4WD vs 2WD with Front WD ranging from 5% to 40% (5% under normal conditions) depending on driving conditions.

    The grip is absolutely phenomenal and it is extremely difficult under normal circumstances to get the PSM "on" on open roads unless you're a pro-rally driver .... Even if the road is a bit bumpy the Targa feels like a high-speed train ...

    I was astonished by the 997 Targa overall comfort and the total absence of roll ....

    With the roof closed and at normal highway speed, the 997 Targa is quieter than the 996. Porsche is claiming that the 997 Targa is as quiet as the Coupe with a sunroof.

    I effortlessly reached 265km/h (on the motorway) and I had to slowdown to overtake some trucks with a "reasonable" speed difference. Even at 265km/h, there was no extra noise coming from the roof.

    Brakes are out of this world (PCCB or Steel) and I couldn't notice a difference vs my 996 (steel). I have to say that I didn't go too hard on the brakes either!!!

    I drove a Targa 4 with Tip, steel brakes and many goodies ... and a Targa 4S with PCCB and a whole bunch of other goodies such as adaptative sport seats (a real plus). So the 2 cars were not directly comparable performance wise. I have to admit that I really enjoyed the Targa 4 with Tip.

    Bottom line, the 997 is far superior to the 996, unfortunately, the Targa is moving from being an "entry level" 911 to a "high end" 911 ..... but I'm afraid I'm going to get one ..... why not a 4S tip?

    Re: Targa 4 & Targa 4S Test drive

    Merci EricAlain pour l'essai comparatif of the 997 vs 996 targa. Porsche did overhaul all it's 911 line succcesfully. The 997 in all its form is far better than the 996, big kudos for Porsche for this tough exercise. I'm glad you enjoyed your trip as well as the targa. I know it's tough to resist...But it is for the better

    Re: Targa 4 & Targa 4S Test drive

    Thanks for your review. Perhaps you can drive a normal 997 (pre-Targa) to understand how incredibly far Porsche went with the suspension changes in the 997 from the 996. The 4WD element of the Targa is, in my opinion, overkill.

    Dan

    Re: Targa 4 & Targa 4S Test drive

    EricAlain:

    I too have a 996 Targa and am getting ready to order the 997.

    I am however concerned about the suspension settings and was wondering whether the "softer" shock absorbers are softer than the 997 coupe or softer than the 996 Targa? If the later, could you notice the difference from your 996?

    Thanks for the information.

    Re: Targa 4 & Targa 4S Test drive


    Unfortunately I cannot really help you. the 997 Targa is the only 997 I ever drove so far. So I don't know how it compares to the 997 Coupe. I can only compare it to my 996 Targa.

    Re: Targa 4 & Targa 4S Test drive

    Quote:
    EricAlain said:

    Unfortunately I cannot really help you. the 997 Targa is the only 997 I ever drove so far. So I don't know how it compares to the 997 Coupe. I can only compare it to my 996 Targa.



    So when you said that the 997 Targa had softer suspension settings, you meant softer than the 996 Targa?

    Re: Targa 4 & Targa 4S Test drive


    Correct.

     
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