Porsche 911 Turbo (2009) facelift

Published: 19 September 2007

A facelifted Porsche 911 Turbo? Already?

Oh yes. Porsche never seems to stop fettling the 911 and although it’s only been just more a year since we drove the Turbo, Porsche is already working on a facelift. As with most updates these days there’ll be more power, more torque, better fuel consumption, and lower emissions. But the biggest news is that the Turbo should finally have Porsche’s new twin-clutch gearbox. Unfortunately, you’ll get none of this until 2009.

More power and torque, but greener too… how come?

Three reasons. To start with the Turbo will be the first of Porsche’s sports car to get direct injection. Having already made an appearance on the Cayenne, the Turbo should benefit from a ten percent cut in emissions and ten percent better fuel consumption. The 3.6-litre turbocharged flat six should also get a power increase to just shy of 500bhp. Porsche will also tweak the VTG (Variable Turbine Geometry) system. And finally there’s a strong possibility that the Turbo will inherit the GT2’s ‘expansion intake manifold’. Longer intake pipes mean cooler air enters the engine. The air is less dense but by upping the boost pressure the volume of air entering the engine remains the same. However, lower temperatures bring more efficient combustion. So it’s cleaner and more powerful – the holy grail of sports car makers at present.

What about changes we can see?

Porsche is continuing its evolutionary styling with the facelifted 911 Turbo. The only obvious changes are at the rear with curvier lights. This is in line with tweaks being made to all of Porsche’s sports cars, from 911 to Cayman, via Boxster. The other changes are a tidier rear bumper and exhaust outlet giving the Turbo’s rear a more cohesive look.

Anything else new on the 911?

We know Porsche is working on a DSG-style gearbox. It’s been a long time coming, but the twin-clutch gearbox should appear on this revised Turbo, confirming the car as Porsche’s technical showcase. Porsche is also working on stop/start technology for all its cars, as previewed by the Cayenne Hybrid. Unfortunately, it’s not a priority as the aforementioned engine tweaks can make more of an impact on fuel consumption and emissions figures, engineering sources tell us, and it’s cheaper too. Don’t expect this facelifted 911 Turbo to appear until 2009 at the earliest, probably at the Geneva Motor Show.

What else is coming from Porsche?

The message is: greener, cleaner cars. Oh, and a stonking great super saloon. Chairman Wendelin Wiedeking spent the whole Porsche press conference at the 2007 Frankfurt Motor Show telling the world’s assembled journalists how clean and green Porsche is going to be over the coming years. Wiedeking also announced record sales and turnover in the 2006-07 financial year. It sold 97,515 vehicles – and a record 37,415 of them were 911s, making it the most popular model ahead of the Cayenne. It wasn’t all good news though; US sales dipped ten percent. All helped no doubt by the Panamera, which will appear with V8 and turbocharged V8 power in mid-2009. But fret not, because they’ll also be V6 and V6 hybrid versions.

By Ben Pulman

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