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  (Source: Jamie Lipman/Inside Line)

Porsche 911 designers have the easiest job in the world. A nip here, a tuck there and "boom", new 911. Pictured above is a prototype 991 911  (Source: Jamie Lipman/Inside Line)

The new 911's interior takes styling cues from the Panamera  (Source: Jamie Lipman/Inside Line)
Porsche's 911 will get a major overhaul for 2012

We reported earlier this week that Porsche is looking to add what is essentially "cruise control on steroids" to its future vehicles. The Porsche ACC InnoDrive system will take full control of throttle inputs and "learn" the routes that the driver regularly travels. Only the steering will be left for the driver to control when the system is enabled.

Now, we're getting some more information on the most famous member of the Porsche family: the 911. The next generation model will be revealed before the end of this year, with production models going to North American customers next year.

The new 911, codenamed 991, is growing in length again. The 911 will sit on a 4-inch longer wheelbase, while overall length grows another 2.2 inches. Compared to the last air-cooled 911, the iconic 993, the new 911 is roughly 10 inches longer with a 7-inch longer wheelbase.

Despite the expanded dimensions, the new 911 will be lighter than outgoing 997 variant. Instead of relying primarily on steel for the construction of the vehicle, the majority of the vehicle will now be constructed of aluminum with high-strength steel being deployed used for "major crash paths" according to Inside Line.

The extended wheelbase will also leave more legroom for the two rear-seat passengers (in reality, kids only) and for an optional hybrid system that should be available for the 2016 model year refresh of the 991 platform.

The hybrid system isn't the only concession being made to improve fuel efficiency for the 911; Porsche has also done the unthinkable and ditched the 911's wonderful hydraulic steering system for an electric one. Porsche 911 project manager Roland Achleitner explains that the excellent steering feel will remain and that "you would not be able to tell it is electric." Another buzzkill is that Porsche is moving to an electronic parking brake for the new car. 

When it comes to powertrains, the new 911 Carrera will share a 3.4-liter flat-6 engine with the Boxster S that produces 350hp. The Carrera S will be blessed with a larger displacement flat-6 producing roughly 400hp. Power will be delivered to the rear wheels (or all four wheels in Carrera 4 guise) using a 7-speed dual-clutch (PDK) transmission or -- wait for it -- a 7-speed manual transmission.

Overall efficiency is said to improve by 12 to 15 percent over the outgoing model.

For more information on the next Porsche 911 and the development of the car, you can check out Inside Line's write-up. They actually got some passenger-seat time with a prototype of the vehicle.

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RE: I like manuals but 7 speed ?
By Reclaimer77 on 7/3/2011 3:22:17 AM , Rating: 0
ALL CARS with all wheel drive are better in the snow. So what? My Subaru is "better" in the snow than a Vette, so man, those Corvette guys must feel pretty dumb now. /sarcasm

The whole point of a 911 is that people do drive them all-year round.

Only an idiot would use a $100k+ car as a daily driver. NOBODY does that, despite your claims.

2) Vette has none of the comfort/German feel on the highway that the planted 911 has

Terribly subjective statement. Yeah if it's not German, it sucks. Great argument.

3) Vette has none of the prestige of the 911

So? Was there a point here? What if he's not buying a car for it's "prestige"?

5) While it may lay down great times at the Nurbugring in the hands of a professional driver

Everyone uses professional drivers for lap times. Even Porsche.

the Vette is a handful to drive at the limit in real life.

Yes because it's not AWD. We've already covered that. Did you have a point? I remember when 911 Turbo's used to be rear wheel drive, they were called "Widowmakers". Chevrolet has managed to make a far more drivable rwd car than Porsche EVER did considering the horsepower.

6) You buy a Vette because all you care about is 1/4 mile times.

Another stupid and subjective statement. Why don't you let Vette buyers speak for themselves instead of telling them why they are buying something.

At the end of the day the Vette just feels like a cheap car that can go very fast but lacks the refinement found in competing vehicles like the 911, R8, GTR.

At the end of the day, this is your opinion.

There are no "competing" vehicles to the Corvette in that price bracket. When Porsche can make something for the same money that doesn't get utterly destroyed in a head to head comparison, give me a call.

RE: I like manuals but 7 speed ?
By Lord 666 on 7/3/2011 4:30:24 PM , Rating: 2

I know you live in Canada and have a distant view of our country. In certain areas of the US, people DO drive their 911s and now Panameras as daily drivers. I live in one of those areas. Just today saw a guy with his son at Toys R Us load the front of his Turbo Convertible in the pouring rain. There are quite a few older ladies driving Panameras to the store. There are even two guys with Carrera GTs; a silver and red one. Sort of helps there is a Porsched/Audi dealer within 3 miles, but by far the most popular luxury brand in the area is MB; 550 4matics and GL450s everywhere. Even one SLS.

By Reclaimer77 on 7/3/2011 7:16:46 PM , Rating: 2
I know you live in Canada and have a distant view of our country.

What? No I don't. I was born and raised in America. I'm just saying most people who can afford $100k+ cars don't drive them every day. For one, they are impractical, and you can easily afford a more practical car.

RE: I like manuals but 7 speed ?
By Manch on 7/3/2011 10:37:27 PM , Rating: 1
I can see stereotyping a mustang/camaro/GTO'so slows as drag racers but a vette guy? Most I know they will hit the drag strip occasionally, play on the highway(of course), but mainly they go to the road courses.

By Reclaimer77 on 7/3/2011 11:36:32 PM , Rating: 1
I just love how he stereotypes the 'Vette as some drag racing car, when it beats pretty much every Porsche in the skidpad and through the slalom without the benefit of all wheel drive. Hell the Nissan GT-R with it's vaunted AWD from God setup can't even pull 1g on the 'pad.

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