18 May 2005

The four-wheel-drive Porsche 911 Carrera 4S is back – and with a 350bhp 3.8-litre engine, it now has more grunt than ever before.

Heading for the UK in October, the 4S is joined by the new Carrera 4, which runs a 321bhp 3.6-litre flat-six powerplant to mirror the current strategy with the rear-wheel-drive Carrera and Carrera S models.

The 997-series Carrera 4 and Carrera 4S, pictured here officially for the first time, are differentiated from their rear-drive siblings by 44mm-wider rear wheelarches housing larger wheel and tyres – 295/35 R18 for the Carrera 4 and 305/30 R19 for the Carrera 4S.

Both new 911 models can be ordered with an optional sports suspension similar to that already available on the Carrera and Carrera S. It adds firmer springs and dampers, lowers the ride height by 20mm and includes a rear differential lock.

The Carrera 4S also gains Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM), giving the choice between two different levels of suspension stiffness – normal or sport. It will be optional on the Carrera 4.

The 321bhp 3.6-litre Carrera 4 hits 62mph in 5.1sec and a top speed of 174mph. The 350bhp 3.8-litre Carrera 4S reaches 62mph in 4.8sec and tops out at 179mph.

Channelling the drive on both cars is a reworked version of Porsche’s four-wheel-drive system. It sends between five and 40 per cent of the engine’s reserves to the front wheels with the remainder sent to the rear.

Prices will be around £5000 over those of the two-wheel-drive models – the Carrera 4 and Carrera 4S will cost £62,930 and £69,900 respectively.

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