Porche 911 Carrera Cabriolet 2012
Porsche has finally officially unveiled its 2012 911 Carrera Cabriolet, and the model will boast the same sleek profile with its soft top in place as its hardtop twin for the first time in the vehicle's history thanks to a unique roof mechanism. The vehicle blends the aluminum and steel chassis of the standard 911 with a folding top manufactured from a slew of lightweight materials, including canvas magnesium and advanced high-strength steel to keep weight as low as possible. Porsche isn't saying exactly how many pounds engineers managed to shave from this vehicle compared to the previous generation, but the company assures us that the latest iteration is "significantly lighter." Sounds good.
Aside from the retractable fabric top, the cabriolet differs little from the 911 coupe. When raised, the softtop even mimics the hardtop’s roofline better than past 911 cabrios. To cut down on wind noise and help the cloth top maintain its shape, Porsche fitted a hard composite panel between the layers of cloth above the front seats. The new softtop may be somewhat sleeker, but the outgoing car’s bustle butt remains—there’s only so much room behind the passengers for the 911’s engine and a lowered roof.
Interior designAt Porsche, we don’t build everyday sportscars, we build sportscars for everyday use. How? By understanding that great agility and maximum comfort are not mutually exclusive but are, in fact, aspects of a harmonious overall concept.
This is especially true of the interior of the new 911. Sportiness, functionality and high-quality materials combine to form a cohesive whole that is conducive to dynamic driving, even during everyday use.
What this means becomes clear the moment you get in. The extended wheelbase now offers 25 mm more leg room in the front than in previous 911 models. Sportiness in harmony with comfort is the theme which is reflected in the clever ergonomics that characterise the entire interior design. The materials used, the layout of the controls and their operating logic belong to a new generation of sportscar. Another new design for the new 911 is the elevated centre console. Its intelligent operating concept follows a clear principle of direct simplicity.
A classic 911 feature is the arrangement of the five circular instruments with the rev counter in the middle. A new addition is the instrument cluster featuring a high-resolution 4.6-inch full VGA TFT colour display for viewing on-board computer, audio system or navigation information.
Fitted as standard, the Sports seats combine even greater comfort with racing-style support and now feature 4-way electric adjustment. The new automatic climate control with zonal temperature controls for driver and front passenger also comes as standard. Also new is the optional light design package for the footwells, storage compartments, rear compartment and overhead console. As ever, we offer an extensive selection of interior colours and materials, such as carbon, leather, wood or aluminium.
Acoustics are an integral part of the concept, particularly the engine sound. Available as an option is the Burmester® High-End Surround Sound System. Optimised for the new 911 Carrera model range, it features 12 loudspeakers and a total output of 821 watts for a perfect spatial sound.
The new 911 proves that apparent opposites, such as style and engineering or comfort and performance, can go hand in hand. For us, there is no contradiction and certainly no need for compromise. After all, a strong personality does not deny the existence of opposites, it unites them.
Each of the two new Cabriolets has the same engine as its Carrera Coupé equivalent. The rear of the 911 Carrera Cabrio houses a 3.4-litre flat engine generating 350 hp (257 kW) of power driving the rear wheels through a seven-gear manual transmission. The open-top Carrera S comes with a 3.8-litre six-cylinder engine developing 400 hp (294 kW) and also a seven-gear manual transmission featured as standard. That means that the open-top 911s as well are distancing themselves even further from the competition in terms of efficiency; both models consume less than ten litres of fuel per 100 kilometres (NEDC). The Cabriolets as well have the Porsche Doppelkupplungsgetriebe (PDK) available as an optional extra, delivering even lower fuel consumption and shorter acceleration times.
With the longer wheelbase compared with the predecessor model, the wider front track and the new electro-mechanical power steering, the new Cabriolets offer even sportier driving characteristics, greater precision and agility. Depending on model, there are other standard or optional active control systems available as well that further enhance the driving dynamics.
The 2012 Porsche 911 Carrera Cabriolet price for about $94,000