There is a long-running argument among performance car fans: power vs. weight. In one corner you get cars generally with small engines making modest numbers but able to corner like they are telepathic, and in the other there are big thumping mills that are rocketships in a straight line but lumber in the turns. Autocar takes an interesting look this continuum in a recent video pitting a 552-hp Porsche 911 Turbo S against a 185-hp Formula 4 racecar. It hopes to find whether the Porsche's huge power advantage is enough to defeat the better grip and aero offered by the nimble racer.

There's no doubt that the Porsche is an utterly fantastic road car. The 911 Turbo looks mean with all of those intakes to suck in cool air, and it backs up the posture with huge amounts of grip available thanks to its all-wheel drive-system. However, at 3,538 pounds, it's a bit of a porker compared to the 1,135-pound Formula 4 car. The open-wheel car boasts just a 2.0-liter naturally aspirated four-cylinder from Ford and a six-speed sequential-manual gearbox, but it has loads of downforce to make up for it.

It shouldn't be a surprise that the formula car wins in the corners. After all, that's what it's made for. So do you think the massive horsepower superiority of the Porsche is enough to even the playing field? Scroll down to watch the video and find out, and even if you're not curious of the winner the 911 does some mean powerslides.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 22 Comments
      Jasonn
      • 6 Months Ago
      Of course its obvious the formula car will win, but its still a fun comparison. Much better than the stupid Jet vs Car races.
      Ola
      • 1 Month Ago

      After seeing this, its kinda hard to imagine what an amazing level a Formula 1 car is at...

      wafflesnfalafel
      • 6 Months Ago
      Given it weighs three times as much, has no additional aero and street tires, it's amazing the 911 is as close as it is. (Nice slo-mo 4 wheel drift shot there too.)
      Georg
      • 6 Months Ago
      6 seconds... more than half of the 6s comes from sticky race slicks vs street tires allone... would be interesting if the single seater is faster than a GT3 RSR... dont think so
      AGSHOP
      • 6 Months Ago
      hate the dam LED PIPES looks like the stupid Q5 front end.
      Steve K
      • 6 Months Ago
      This has little to do with power to weight ratio and everything to do with downforce, slick tire grip, low polar moment of inertia, and center of gravity. Hell, put a DOT R tire on the S and it will go 5 seconds a lap quicker from that one upgrade alone.
        Echelon Bob
        • 6 Months Ago
        @Steve K
        Exactly - I'd be curious how close the 911 could get with special sticky slick tires and some track-oriented suspension tuning.
      AGSHOP
      • 6 Months Ago
      THOSE FOG LIGHTS ARE SOOOO CHEESE!!! They look like mini Audi Q5 headlights. Terrible style. They better ahve an option to delete those nasty things. Ruins the whole front look.
      johnnyhedwardsjr
      • 6 Months Ago
      I don't understand why they did this test in a turbo S why didn't they do this test in a GT3? It would have been cool for them to bring other cars to the track such as a Miata and the GTR and FRS.
        johnnyhedwardsjr
        • 6 Months Ago
        @johnnyhedwardsjr
        I'm sure, however, it would have been track car vs track car instead of road car vs track car. Everyone knows that the Turbo and Turbo S are for the road and the GT3 and GT2 are for the track.
      Jonathan
      • 6 Months Ago
      The weight differential is largely responsible for the Formula 4's quicker pace- it's an eye opener for sure as most people would think that a 911 Turbo would far outmuscle a spec race car with a 2.0L 4-cylinder engine.
        SloopJohnB
        • 6 Months Ago
        @Jonathan
        I disagree. The aero and grip is largely responsible. Put a similar ratio of downforce to gross weight on the Porsche as well as weight to tire patch not to mention the F4 was running racing slicks while the Porsche was on street tires….who knows.
      Trent
      • 6 Months Ago
      I wonder why they did not do the same test in a GT3? I know it would not have changed the win by the GT4 but I bet it would have closed the gap.
        SloopJohnB
        • 6 Months Ago
        @Trent
        LOL…the guy got to spend FOUR hours in an F4. Life must be sweet!
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