The 2016 Porsche Targa GTS proves that a shield can be a weapon
This is a porche 911.
It's engine is in the back, and it looks remarkably similar to the car launched over 50 years ago bearing the same name, but this isn't any old 911.
It's a [UNKNOWN] And it's got a cool roof with a name that has history.
Because it does this think of this as a folding hardtop that isn't A overpriced like a Merc SL or B caque like those old Peugeot 206 CC things you see moms driving around in.
Except it's not really a hard top.
It's sort of a soft top light.
And when you want the sun in your ear hair and the car will eat it until you want more roof and life again.
Porsche's target range is four wheel drive only.
No rear wheel drive shenanigans here, but this one is a GTS and the GTS cars are pretty cool.
They get more power.
This has 424 break horse power.
Spouting 355 pound foot coming out of it's 3.8 liter engine.
You also get lots of extra toys for example [UNKNOWN] active stability management, a spot promo package and active engine [UNKNOWN] to keep the engine in check under load.
ANd much more than that as well.
Maps founds would be good to note that specing a regular toga 4x to this level would cost 12000 pounds.
The Targa GTS costs a little over 104,000 pounds.
Still a lot, but not as much of a lot as you would be paying otherwise.
With the PDK auto, it'll get you from naught to 62 in 4.3 seconds, and up to 187 miles an hour, which isn't exactly slow.
The GTS name comes From the 904 Carrera GTS racing car.
The legend that it is, it's also things Porsche designed, and Butzi Porsche's favorite ever design.
That's pretty cool.
But what about the [UNKNOWN] and how come it's not a proper convertible?
Well that's an interesting story.
As with many Porsche names, targa is borrowed from the world of motor sports.
The targa Floria was a super risky road race that ran from 1906 until 1977 with breaks for wars obviously.
Now, much like Lamont, Porche holds the record for having the most wins of any manufacturer for the Targa Florio.
And it wasn't an easy race.
Because it was a lap of Sicily, well,at one point it was.
There were a number of course variants ranging from the 600-mile loop of Sicily to more laps of shorter leads to, well, you get my drift.
Lots of variation.
The roads were tough and technical.
The drivers must have been mad.
The Florio was killed off because it was simply too unsafe.
Cars were getting faster, and in its last year enough people were killed to put an instant stop to it.
So that's why the Targa is called the Targa.
It has proper motor sport heritage.
But how come it's not a proper convertible?
Why is it so removable [UNKNOWN] roof panels.
Well, that's down to our friends in America.
You see, in the 60s and 70s, manufacturers were making cars with these removable panels on them because they thought the US government was going to ban proper convertibles and relevant developer products, and to have it removed from Market, they got smart.
They built cars with proper road tension, safety features you'd get from a hard top car, but also gave drivers an option to turn their bald spots.
The first car to use the Targa name appeared in 1966, it was a 911 funnily enough, and in Italian it means shield, or plate.
But it wasn't the first car to use that roof mechanism.
That honor falls to the Triumph TR4.
On the Triumph it wasn't given a silly Italian name.
No, was called the surrey top.
So now you know why the Targa is called the Targa, and why it has,
An interesting roof mechanism.
So what's it like to drive?
Well, as you'd expect, it's a Porsche 911, so it's lovely.
There is one big difference from the rear-wheel drive car I drove earlier in the year, and that is the drivetrain.
This is all-wheel drive.
And while it gives you a lot of extra grip, you do feel a lot safer going around corners when it's wet, like it is today.
It started off dry, now it's wet, hence there's some shots of this with the roof up, and a lot with the roof down, and vice versa.
Because yay, British summer time.
Anyway, it gives you a lot more confidence, but at the same time you do lose a little bit of steering feel from it.
Because Well, the front wheels have a job to do, as well.
There's a little [INAUDIBLE] in there [INAUDIBLE] that shows you exactly what they're doing and when they're doing it.
But I think that's a necessary trade-off.
If you're gonna have four-wheel drive, you can't have ultra, mega-hyper pure steering And it's still quite good steering.
In fact, I'll say it's more than quite good.
It's really good steering.
It feels really lovely.
They fixed the gear box for this car and it feels fantastic.
It's a nice shortish throw.
The clutch is a bit on the springy side, but nothing you wouldn't be able to get used to.
And it feels great to finally be able to change your own gear.
In a 911 and not feel a bit cheated.
My only [UNKNOWN] is changing into seventh because the idea is that you're on the motorway, you're cruising, and you want to put it into seventh.
But so many times this morning on the drive down here I kept putting it into fifth because it's just not quite as intuitive.
It might just be because I'm not used to having a seventh Still it's a bit naff.
When you put the roof down, though, that's when you get a little bit extra out of the Targa experience.
Cuz once the roof has been eaten by the car you get to hear the noise.
You get to feel the sun on your head.
You get feel a little bit of wind rush but it's not uncomfortable.
It's not too windy.
You don't get blustered.
But you still Get that open top experience.
And this one looks like this.
It's got the roll hood like we got the original Targa.
It looks really proper.
It sets it off, it makes it stand out.
I do like the [INAUDIBLE] design a lot.
Some people say it's boring, some say it hasn't changed in over 50 years But every time they bring out a new car there's something awesome to look at, the little details everywhere that just set it odd.
And whoever had the responsibility of designing the new Targa, whoever that person is, good on you.
Cuz I love that [INAUDIBLE].
It just makes the car bang on.
This being a GTS, it has lots and lots and lots and lots of power.
424 break, as I mentioned earlier and by god, you can feel it.
You feel it better at the top end of the rev range.
It just surges you forward and you get that beautiful [INAUDIBLE] force you how.
Even if you leave them out of the many sport modes, it's a brilliant 9-11, obviously, because it's a 9-11.
9-11s, they give you this certain feeling that only a 9-11 can.
And I couldn't quite put my finger on it before I'd driven it.
[INAUDIBLE] [NOISE] But they're just right.
You feel the weight of the back when you go around a corner, because you've got your four wheel drive.
But the power down.
A little bit earlier, it [UNKNOWN] into the back, because that's what 911s do.
And it throws you forward, and you have that extra confidence in the car.
Because it lets you play with it, it lets you exploit it.
and it feels lovely.
These things are just fantastic motors and I do wonder whether this range of cars this GTS is well the GTS range the cars driven this year.
I really wonder whether these are the last normal turbo 911 I know the GT 3's and the RS's those are going to stay naturally aspiration for as long as possible, but the next generation of 911's will have turbo chargers.
We know this, that's a fact.
So this is a more special car than really I thought of when I got into it this morning.
Led years of heritage in every 911.
As a result of that there's a 911 for everyone.
Speed, hardcore hoolary, or more reluctant glassing, the Torga is the drop-top for the person that doesn't really want a drop-top.
It can be an occasional thing.
And its chrome targa hoop, a hark back to 1966's original, is seriously cool.
Personally, I would go for a GTS rear-wheel drive coupe.
But I can see why you'd pick the targa.
Yeah, the all-wheel drive thing does take the edge off of it just a little bit, but this isn't a car you'd buy exclusively for the drive.
You get it for its looks as well.
The thing that really makes this car stand out is its history, the racecar that stuck through and won to give it that name, a name that has been going on nearly as long as the nine eleven itself and with the roof down The gas, you can almost here them echoing through the cabin.
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