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    My 2 bits on PDK

    Just thought I would share my experience of test driving the 997S.2 with PDK & Sports Chrono.  Now I am not at all used to driving an automatic/tiptronic, especially in a sports car, and have been driving a manual Porsche for the past 3 years.  Even so I think that it is a phenomenal effort from Porsche to replace their Tiptronic and make buyers of manual trannies like me consider it seriously.

    In effect there were 4 modes for changing gears.

    In normal mode, it was a bit ridiculous for a sports car, (at one point I was doing 40kph in traffic, and it upshifted to 6th!!!)  and unless I gave it a hard prod on the accelerator it was reluctant to downshift. 

    In sports mode, it seemed a bit more sensible, changing up at approx 3000-4000rpm, unless the foot was planted, and was more intuitive for my driving style.

    In sports plus, it became a bit manic, and downshifted at every twitch of my right foot, making it again not do what I wanted it to.  But on the track, I think this mode will shine, esp. in conjunction with Launch Control.

    Finally, in manual, it did what I told it to do, and was the most satisfying to drive.  Incidentally, I had no problems with the buttons, and found them quite easy.  On the contrary, I found that having the same action on both sides helped me when I wanted to change gears whilst turning – the hand which was up could perform the gearshifts more easily.  But then as said before, I have no experience with flappy paddles, so I didn't have to unlearn anything to learn this method. 

    I do realise that I need to ‘learn’ how to best utilise the modes of shifting, just like I had to learn all the different modes of shooting with an SLR camera.  Normally I wouldn’t even consider the PDK but nowadays with the advent of huge traffic on my daily commute, it might let head rule heart and go the practical PDK route. 

    A piece of advice – don’t even DREAM of ordering a PDK car without Sports Chrono, as you will not have the sports, sports plus & Launch Control modes as described above.


    Re: My 2 bits on PDK

    Good review and similar initial impressions from me.  We probably drove the same car, lol.  I was quite adamant prior to driving the car that I would not own a Porsche without 3 pedals.  Unfortunately about 10 minutes into the test drive, I started having some thoughts that were foreign to me, i.e. the box really is good. 

    I drove it for the intial few kms in normal mode and the accelerator felt like an elastic band, with little connection to the throttle body.  Once in sport mode and manual, i started to enjoy the smooth quick shifts and immediacy of the down changes. In sport plus mode, it is even better, i can see myself having a default setting of sport plus manual mode, with dampers on normal. i did not enjoy any of the auto modes to be honest, but this could be a function of not spending sufficient time in the drivers seat.

     I have to conclude that the gearbox won me over.  What I despise  of torque converter type autos is the lack of connection between the gears and the flywheel, there is no friction! The pdk is different as you still feel the direct connection.  The only difference between a conventional manual and the pdk box is the gear changing interface, with PDK obviouly having buttons.

    Based on the above experience, you wont be surprised to read that I have placed on order for a white 911S, with PDK, PSE, -20mm LSD, and all the usual toys that one would spec for a 911. The car will be delivered in April 09. I am not 100% sure about the -20mm drop, but I did not think that the normal PASM was too stiff, and felt that there was room for improvement.

    Cheers


    Re: My 2 bits on PDK

    I have an 09 with the -20mm Sport PASM and it rides in normal mode just fine. Even over here in the USA with our horrible roads. I just keep in mind this is a sports car and should ride and handle like one. I highly suggest Sport PASM
    --
    Mike 2007 C2S Love DE Track Days and AutoX

    Re: My 2 bits on PDK

    mdrums:
    I have an 09 with the -20mm Sport PASM and it rides in normal mode just fine. Even over here in the USA with our horrible roads. I just keep in mind this is a sports car and should ride and handle like one. I highly suggest Sport PASM
    --
    Mike 2007 C2S Love DE Track Days and AutoX

    Cheers Mike

    I have driven in Tampa and your roads are like glass tops compared to the middle east.  The -20mm drop is bound to be a compromise when one encounters poor surfaces but I am will to take the chance.  Nothing worse that a car that gets all soggy then minute you decide to up the tempo a tad! 

     Do you also have the LSD fitted?


    Re: My 2 bits on PDK

    Liquid:

    Based on the above experience, you wont be surprised to read that I have placed on order for a white 911S, with PDK, PSE, -20mm LSD, and all the usual toys that one would spec for a 911. The car will be delivered in April 09. I am not 100% sure about the -20mm drop, but I did not think that the normal PASM was too stiff, and felt that there was room for improvement.

    Cheers

    My basic configuration is also very similar to yours, and I chose Arctic Silver/black interior with silver-gray seat belts as this time I went for the practicality of maintaining silver, and also I definitely wanted a light colour this time as my Monaco Blue 5 Series gets really hot in the summer!  I didn't choose the model designation strip on the side, but I may contact Foilacar after delivery to make something for me then.  My only difference it seems is the suspension, as since mine will be a daily commuter, I may not want the constantly hard suspension every day.  (I was really impressed with the ride-handling characteristics of the PASM in both modes).  I see exactly what you mean when you talk about the PASM not being too stiff on our roads.  Actually, I read somewhere that the new -20mm suspension is also not as firm as the previous iteration on the 997.1.  On our roads, you will not have too much of a problem, I think.  I have also been promised an April 09 delivery.  So we will have broad smiles on our faces at about the same time Smiley!!

    Re: My 2 bits on PDK

    The -20mm PASM is switchable, dont confuse it with the previous mechanical sports suspension.  Mine is also going to be a daily driver btw.


    Re: My 2 bits on PDK

    guess we will all hook up on sheikh zayed then :)

    have test driven the same car from Al nabooda. share the same thoughts about the pdk...normal mode is awful...worse that the normal tiptronic on the mk1 imo.

     did u guys have any issues with the car? it stalled as i was parking it!


    Re: My 2 bits on PDK

    Hi, pmpsch!  Yes, we might just!  The normal mode is really frustrating, but on further thought it is their way of making the 911 more eco-friendly and fuel efficient without compromising the actual performance if you press a button.  What Liquid said has stuck in my mind - I will be using the car as a fast-shifting manual, with the interface changing from gearshift to buttons.  Which car have you ordered?  When is your promised delivery?

    Re: My 2 bits on PDK

    I agree with your assessment of the PDK.

    However, IMO it is a robbery that Porsche charge extra fro the Sport Chrono features of Sport and Sport plus as far as the gearbox is concerned.

    SC gearbox modes are so essential for a sports car that it should come as standard. A misguided buyer could end up with a very soft and spongy gearbox.


    Re: My 2 bits on PDK

    I have a deposit on the mk2 GT3 provided it comes with PDK, otherwise the mk2 turbo. (therefore no delivery dates so far)

    This being said i just tried the green gt3rs displayed at house of cars and although it is a manual i found it pretty easy to drive in traffic and a great pleasure when traffic clears :)


    Re: My 2 bits on PDK

    To be honest, I do not understand the Dubai fascination with slushboxes, and blaming this on traffic.  My conspiracy theory is that most people in Dubai are only licensed to drive autos, hence the proliferation of them. 

     I was thinking of going the Gt3 route myself, until I was told that there was a "bun in the oven".  Having to don the cap of responsibility et al, I settled for a family car aka 911S.Smiley


    Re: My 2 bits on PDK

    reginos:

    I agree with your assessment of the PDK.

    However, IMO it is a robbery that Porsche charge extra fro the Sport Chrono features of Sport and Sport plus as far as the gearbox is concerned.

    SC gearbox modes are so essential for a sports car that it should come as standard. A misguided buyer could end up with a very soft and spongy gearbox.

    Don't get me started!!  Why the hell should the LSD be an option!  Soon the rear diff itself will be an option!!  What a about iPod connectivity?!  A new feature, but an option!  Also, why should we pay to display Porsche branding?!  Why are embossing crests on seats and wheel centre sets options?! No other manufacturer makes the customer pay for its own branding!! 

    Re: My 2 bits on PDK

    Arshad:
    reginos:

    I agree with your assessment of the PDK.

    However, IMO it is a robbery that Porsche charge extra fro the Sport Chrono features of Sport and Sport plus as far as the gearbox is concerned.

    SC gearbox modes are so essential for a sports car that it should come as standard. A misguided buyer could end up with a very soft and spongy gearbox.

    Don't get me started!!  Why the hell should the LSD be an option!  Soon the rear diff itself will be an option!!  What a about iPod connectivity?!  A new feature, but an option!  Also, why should we pay to display Porsche branding?!  Why are embossing crests on seats and wheel centre sets options?! No other manufacturer makes the customer pay for its own branding!! 

     

    Porsche tell this customisation story that is rubbish of course.

    In reality it is the cream on top of their normal profits


    Re: My 2 bits on PDK

    After my testdrive 2 months ago, I felt exactly the same.. I can't wrap my head around the fact that the Sports Chrono is an option... A 911 PDK without the sports chrono would be something like a manual with only second fifth and sixth gear....

    Re: My 2 bits on PDK

    In the PDK vs Manual race, currently, PDK is winning by a very very long shot representing close to 90% of new orders ....

    May be 2-3 years down the road, stick 997.2 will command a premium because if their scarcity 


    Re: My 2 bits on PDK

    I have been using my PDK now for 1600 km. Still have mixed feelings.

    Great for relaxed driving on highway,  in town, in traffic jams.  Absolutly fantastic for straight line acceleration, but not enough control on back roads, and sometimes i get put in situations where the lack of control is nearly dangerous ( like in round abouts when I need to quickly accelerate and the damm gearbox put itself in 5th when it shoud be in 2nd and I end up with no power !!! )

    The only mode that reacts properly is the sports plus . 


    --
    997 C4S (-20mm) +  997.2 C2S, PDK, -20mm

    Re: My 2 bits on PDK

    Gnil:

    I have been using my PDK now for 1600 km. Still have mixed feelings.

    Great for relaxed driving on highway,  in town, in traffic jams.  Absolutly fantastic for straight line acceleration, but not enough control on back roads, and sometimes i get put in situations where the lack of control is nearly dangerous ( like in round abouts when I need to quickly accelerate and the damm gearbox put itself in 5th when it shoud be in 2nd and I end up with no power !!! )

    The only mode that reacts properly is the sports plus . 


    --
    997 C4S (-20mm) +  997.2 C2S, PDK, -20mm

    I think you should learn to switch between D and M beforehand, depending on what driving style you want to apply and how fast you want to corner.

    Also even in D, you can override with the paddles at the right moment. Once you override even in D it stays in gear for long enough and if you continue cornering it doesn't change up. 


    Re: My 2 bits on PDK

    Gnil:

    sometimes i get put in situations where the lack of control is nearly dangerous ( like in round abouts when I need to quickly accelerate and the damm gearbox put itself in 5th when it shoud be in 2nd and I end up with no power !!! )

    Just what I am also scared about!  I know I will have to learn how to quickly manually override the gearbox and change down some gears (and hope not do the opposite and change up by mistake!) during situations like what you described.    I can relate exactly to what you go through in such a situation, when the gas pedal doesn't respond linearly to your inputs in normal mode, the 'box doesn't downshift, and the car feels like a 1.1 litre engine!!

    Re: My 2 bits on PDK

    Arshad:
    Gnil:

    sometimes i get put in situations where the lack of control is nearly dangerous ( like in round abouts when I need to quickly accelerate and the damm gearbox put itself in 5th when it shoud be in 2nd and I end up with no power !!! )

    Just what I am also scared about!  I know I will have to learn how to quickly manually override the gearbox and change down some gears (and hope not do the opposite and change up by mistake!) during situations like what you described.    I can relate exactly to what you go through in such a situation, when the gas pedal doesn't respond linearly to your inputs in normal mode, the 'box doesn't downshift, and the car feels like a 1.1 litre engine!!


    Move the lever to M beforehand and hold gear or  downshift using the lever or the buttons whatever is handy at the moment.

    With manual you have one program, very simple. Here you have 6 to play with, so don't expect to master it in an afternoon. The more you use the car the better you will get. 


    Re: My 2 bits on PDK

    EricAlain:

    In the PDK vs Manual race, currently, PDK is winning by a very very long shot representing close to 90% of new orders ....

    May be 2-3 years down the road, stick 997.2 will command a premium because if their scarcity 

    Maybe manual will be a special order cost option for romantics in the near future.

    Also consider that the various types of autos will be continuously improving and all problems will be ironed out very soon at the present rate of progress.

    Mercedes don't even bother with manuals anymore on top models, and I think many of the better BMWs.



    Re: My 2 bits on PDK

    Guys, I've driven most of my pdk miles in manual in sportbut with my -20mm suspension set to normal - this is a great balance!

    Re: My 2 bits on PDK

    Guys, I've driven most of my pdk miles in manual in sportbut with my -20mm suspension set to normal - this is a great balance!

    Re: My 2 bits on PDK

    Arshad:
    Gnil:

    sometimes i get put in situations where the lack of control is nearly dangerous ( like in round abouts when I need to quickly accelerate and the damm gearbox put itself in 5th when it shoud be in 2nd and I end up with no power !!! )

    Just what I am also scared about!  I know I will have to learn how to quickly manually override the gearbox and change down some gears (and hope not do the opposite and change up by mistake!) during situations like what you described.    I can relate exactly to what you go through in such a situation, when the gas pedal doesn't respond linearly to your inputs in normal mode, the 'box doesn't downshift, and the car feels like a 1.1 litre engine!!

    Yes, exactly ! Spot on !! I hate that feeling Smiley

    But , as Reginos is saying, one needs to go back into manual mode before entering a round about or other similas situations.....

    So on one hand I get a bit 'lazy' with this gear box, thinking I do not have to do anything ( when I don't want to) but actually I need to concentrate more on the gear box.. It's a bit of a paradoxe !!! 


    --
    997 C4S (-20mm) +  997.2 C2S, PDK, -20mm

    Re: My 2 bits on PDK

    mex99:
    Guys, I've driven most of my pdk miles in manual in sportbut with my -20mm suspension set to normal - this is a great balance!
    I agree . This is the best mode for daily driving. I just wish it could be set as default !!! It should not be difficult to have an option on the PCM that would do that .
    --
    997 C4S (-20mm) +  997.2 C2S, PDK, -20mm

    Re: My 2 bits on PDK

    Gnil:
    mex99:
    Guys, I've driven most of my pdk miles in manual in sportbut with my -20mm suspension set to normal - this is a great balance!
    I agree . This is the best mode for daily driving. I just wish it could be set as default !!! It should not be difficult to have an option on the PCM that would do that .
    --
    997 C4S (-20mm) +  997.2 C2S, PDK, -20mm

    The Normal PDK mode is there for marketing reasons (boost the official fuel economy figures) and regulations (reduce the official CO2 figures).

    It is of no practical use on the road, unless you occasionally want to travel very economically and leisurely on a highway whilst having a nice chat with your passenger or concentrating on the scenery or making your phone calls.

    What I hate Porsche AG's attitude for, is that the Sport Chrono gearbox modes are optional extras, so they might be overlooked by customers or at best this makes the car even more expensive to buy.


    Re: My 2 bits on PDK

    .........or to use to warm up the car Smiley
    --
    997 C4S (-20mm) +  997.2 C2S, PDK, -20mm

     
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