2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS front 3/4 view

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS rear 3/4 view

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS front 3/4 view

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS rear 3/4 view

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS side view

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS front view

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS rear view

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS headlight

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS led lights

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS logo

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS wheel

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS wheel detail

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS wheel detail

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS side mirror

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS taillight

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS badge

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS exhaust tips

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS engine

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS engine badge

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS front seats

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS interior

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS interior

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS steering wheel

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS steering wheel detail

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS steering wheel logo

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS steering wheel detail

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS gauges

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
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  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS chrono

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS chrono

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  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS instrument panel

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS shifter

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
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  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS door speaker

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS rear seats

  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS
  • 2011 Porsche 911 GTS front cargo area

Vital Stats

Engine:
3.8L Flat-Six
Power:
408 HP / 310 LB-FT
Transmission:
6-Speed Manual
0-60 Time:
4.4 Seconds
Top Speed:
190 MPH
Drivetrain:
Rear-Wheel Drive
Curb Weight:
3,131 LBS
Seating:
2+2
Cargo:
3.71 CU-FT
MPG:
18 City / 25 HWY
The Best Everyday 911 You Can Buy, Today



Twenty-two. That's how many Porsche 911 variants are available right now. And by this time next year, they'll all be obsolete. But this one – the 2011 Porsche 911 GTS – is the pick of the litter. It's the definition of the daily-driver's supercar and comes equipped with everything you need in a Type 997. It's perfect. You want it. And you want it now.

Just please forget about the Type 991 peering out from behind the curtain...
The GTS is the 997's swan song. It's everything Porsche has learned over the course of the current 911's tenure distilled into a package that's aimed at street drivers, not weekend racers. The specs aren't particularly mind-blowing and the acceleration doesn't warp the space/time continuum like some other 911s, but that's not the point. It's the best 911 today because it flatters and inspires. It revels in its parts-binifcation like few things we've driven. It's pure, but not unhinged. It's balanced, but not comprised. It's a rolling love letter to anyone smart enough to choose it among the scads of other 911 variants (a few million if you do the math).

It's also the favorite 911 of a certain Porsche mechanic we met at a Shell station outside of Monterey. And that says... something.

Oh, and one other thing: The GTS is something of a bargain when you look at what it takes to bring a 997 Carrera S, the 911 variant one rung below it on the ladder, up to same level.

2011 Porsche 911 GTS side view2011 Porsche 911 GTS front view2011 Porsche 911 GTS rear view

Let's start with output. The standard Carrera S (again, the 997) comes equipped with 385 horsepower from its 3.8-liter flat-six. The GTS ups the game to 408 horsepower at 7,300 rpm thanks to the standard fitment of the $16,900 Powerkit option (tweaks to the intake and exhaust tracts) on the outgoing 997 S. But surprisingly, it's the torque that impresses from behind the wheel. Twist is up to 310 pound-feet at 4,200 rpm, but with 238 lb-ft available practically from idle, it's the linearity of its delivery that shines through and helps achieve a 4.4-second run to 60 miles per hour.

You've got over 3,000 revs worth of shove at your command, which means fiddling with the glorious – and standard – six-speed manual is kept to a minimum when hustling through the bends. An optional PDK dual-clutch automatic commands an extra $4,320, but only the seriously tri-pedal-allergic would be advised to nix the stick thanks to its precise throws and light-but-engaged clutch pedal. You enjoy this setup around town, not endure it.

2011 Porsche 911 GTS engine

Other features? The 19-inch, center-lock black wheels shod in Michelin Pilot Sport PS2s (235/35 R19 up front and 305/30 R19 in the rear) would run you well over $6K at the dealer, while the Sport Design front end and steering wheel, Alcantra-coated interior and other assorted baubles would bring the price of your faux-GTS into near-GT3 range. So what's the price of the GTS? $103,100. To start, natch.

Our tester stickered for just north of $110,000 and came equipped with the bits that mattered, specifically the Sport Chrono pack ($960), Alcantara/leather buckets ($2,990) and Sport Suspension, which drops the GTS an extra 20mm and includes a limited slip differential ($950). All of which is a pittance compared to what's already on your American Express Black – assuming you don't option up for the $8,150 ceramic brake option, but even then...

On the topic of the suspension, it's the lone demerit with the GTS – at least, around town. Bumps, heaves and all manner of tarmac imperfections are directly routed through the 30-series rubber before assaulting your posterior like a dominatrix intent on a big tip. It's not brutal, but it's far from comfortable until you get up to speed. And then, it's magic.

2011 Porsche 911 GTS interior2011 Porsche 911 GTS front seats2011 Porsche 911 GTS chrono2011 Porsche 911 GTS shifter

The damper/spring combination works best over 40 mph, so most freeway trips are easy to handle. To test that assertion, I took a friend out to Laguna Seca at the crack of dawn to take in a race.

Despite Porsche's "School Bus" TV spot, this isn't something designed to haul two parents and a pair of kids. However, it is enough to shoehorn a couple of bags and a 270-pound, 6-foot 8-inch ex-bouncer into the passenger seat. With ease. The rear seats continue to be a joke, and we'll continue laughing about them until we get seat-time in the longer-wheelbase 991.

Any concerns about the GTS' livability flew out the sports exhaust over the course of our two-hour drive to the coast, and as much as I enjoy wheel-to-wheel racing at Laguna, as soon as the checkered flag dropped, we made a B-line to the parking lot in search of the best roads back to the Bay.

2011 Porsche 911 GTS headlight2011 Porsche 911 GTS wheel detail2011 Porsche 911 GTS taillight2011 Porsche 911 GTS exhaust pipes

I'll be the first to admit that I'm jaded. And when it comes to this price bracket, it takes the world on a platter with a side of Scarlett Johansson to impress. So when we finally arrived at the first run road, I decided to start slow and build the tension.

To start, let's blow this tired trope out of the water: There's absolutely nothing dynamically faulty with the Porsche's rear-engine architecture. At least, not anymore. The ability to play with the 911's balance – and particularly this GTS – at any time, in any state simply comes down to driver sanity. Don't do something stupid, and you're fine. Nail the throttle coming out of a low speed bend with all the nannies cackling away, and you're met with benign understeer all the way through. Jump off the throttle mid-corner and yes, the back-end will come around with the TC set to Sport+, but you want it that way and it's remarkably easy to both anticipate and catch. The 911 just feels natural sliding beneath you and with the 3.8-liter six-cylinder putting its shoulder into the chassis, it feels best when abused.

2011 Porsche 911 GTS rear 3/4 view

And that almost unbearable suspension? It melts away as soon as the speed piles on. Combined with the hydraulically assisted and speed-proportional rack-and-pinion steering, the GTS' setup makes for one of the greatest driving experiences in the planet. Hyperbole, you say? Drive one and then tell me I'm wrong. I'll put $20 on it... not that I need to.

What about that 800-pound gorilla rapping on the door? It goes by the chassis code 991 and it's sure to receive accolades and stirring reviews when Porsche finally lets us hacks behind the wheel. But for today, the GTS reigns supreme. The ultimate 911 for the above-average-Joe more concerned about enjoying the space between A and B then posing next to his GT3. And judging by how the 996 is doing on the used market, you'll be able to pick up a GTS for a song when another 20 991 variants inevitably arrive. Mark your calendars and start stashing your pennies now. I am...


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 51 Comments
      Joshua Bolden
      • 3 Years Ago
      I can only imagine how hard it was buying a 997 with all the variants and models available
      Dvanos
      • 3 Years Ago
      I still prefer the looks of the 997 both interior and exterior. In a few years 997 gen 2 models are going to be a catch at pre-owned prices.
      Toneron
      • 3 Years Ago
      Nah - rear engine design sucks. For that kind of cheese I'd bump up to a ZR1 - no contest. HOWEVER I would love a Cayman S - the RIGHT engine design mounted in the RIGHT place.
        Lachmund
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Toneron
        you clearly haven't driven a 911
        poorboywrx
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Toneron
        moron
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Toneron
        [blocked]
          Elmo
          • 3 Years Ago
          Fast in a straight line? So a 7 minute and 16 second run around the Nurburgring is in a straight line? Good god, you're an idiot.
        mrpinto
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Toneron
        lol. You should email the 911 product team at Porsche. Let them know that if they move the engine forward, maybe they'll start winning races...
      • 3 Years Ago
      [blocked]
      joe shmoe
      • 3 Years Ago
      scarlett johansson is very very overrated. don't put her name and porsche in the same sentence.
        You guy
        • 3 Years Ago
        @joe shmoe
        Scarlett Johanson (sp?) is SMOKING hot. Iron Man 2, Black Widow.
      • 3 Years Ago
      [blocked]
      goruns
      • 3 Years Ago
      MOST PEOPLE THAT OWN ONE ARE INTO ILLEGAL ACTIVITY
      • 3 Years Ago
      [blocked]
        amosc105
        • 3 Years Ago
        The GTR is a kid's car. All you teenagers who don't know anything about cars only see 0-60's and price tags..and you can't handle cars more difficult to drive than the GTR (aka, every other sports car in existence) anyways. Nice reliability and interior marks by the way, both BS. Look up the Lotus Evora/911 S/ZO6/GTR comparison by C&D online and read why the 911 won. Ever hear of "driver's car"?
        AnthonyL
        • 3 Years Ago
        Objection! err.. Objective(!), is what your statement is. except for the last two. Remember, power isn't everything young kemosabi (that's spelled really wrong). Speed on the track is more important and there are many tracks where the 911 would beat the GTR.
          Bandit5317
          • 3 Years Ago
          @AnthonyL
          Give me one example of this car beating a GTR on the track. Yes, a 911 could conceivably beat a GTR on the track, if it's name were Turbo or GT2. In which case it would cost several times more...
      PiCASSO
      • 3 Years Ago
      Ugly combination... yellow with black rims.
      Hitcherman
      • 3 Years Ago
      Whoa! How strong a microscope will I have to break out to notice the differences?
      jboogiezx6
      • 3 Years Ago
      lovely
      KK
      • 3 Years Ago
      It's only missing one thing. A ragtop for those beautiful, sunny California days.....
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