Porsche 911 (2008): the spy photos

Published: 04 April 2008

Porsche will upgrade the 911 this summer, in the latest of a long line of improvements to the 40-year-old sports car. It will be on sale in UK showrooms in autumn 2008 and those evolution-not-revolution looks hide a raft of technical changes including (finally!) a new twin-clutch gearbox.

The 997’s engines will get direction injection – as the Cayenne did – to lower emissions, improve fuel consumption and increase power. And that double-clutch gearbox, called PDK in Porsche speak, will allow electric-fast gearchanges and improved economy.

Porsche 911: the engine

The 3.6- and 3.8-litre flat six boxer engines will gain the same direct injection system that the Cayenne received early in 2007. In the controversial SUV that brought a little extra gruffness, but 10-15 percent more power and torque, and a similar reduction in fuel consumption.

PDK transmission

After much delay, Porsche will finally announce its Porsche Doppel Kupplungen gearbox. Its new partners at the VW Group stole a march on the Stuttgart manufacturer with DSG, and only now is Porsche getting its own system. Let’s hope it’s been worth the wait.

Click ‘Next’ to read about the interior of the new 911

CAR Online has driven nearly all of the current 911 range. Browse our 911 drives in the Related News links belowOur spies have grabbed the first shots inside the 911. The main cabin architecture appears to be the same as today’s car, but Porsche has tweaked the fiddly centre console and sat-nav system. Gone is the spray-on silver finish, replaced by a darker console with chrome highlights.

A full family of 911s

We’ve snapped the Targa, Cabriolet and Coupe versions, giving us a clear indication of the ‘new’ 911 look. Unsurprisingly, it’s very close to today’s car. At the front there are new indicators and a reprofiled, curvier  front bumper. You’ll need a degree in Porsche anorakdom to spot the changes if we’re being honest.

The rear is pepped up by curvier light clusters and the third brake lights are now illuminated by LEDs. Engineers at most car companies love light emitting diodes – they’re smaller allow designers more flexibility, they last longer than bulbs and they are quicker to react than conventional filaments, warning drivers behind faster. Oh, and they look quite cool, too.

It’s all well and good, but when’s the next proper new 911?

We hear the next step-change in the 911 saga comes in 2011. Details are shaky at this stage, but it will be codenamed 991 and keep the world’s best-known sports car ticking over until 2018. And, yes, it will still be rear-engined.

CAR Online has driven nearly all of the current 911 range. Browse our 911 drives in the Related News links below

By Ben Pulman

CAR's editor-at-large, co-ordinator, tallboy