2014 Porsche 911 Turbo Coupe
2014 Porsche 911 Turbo Coupe
2014 Porsche 911 Turbo Coupe
2014 Porsche 911 Turbo Coupe. Click image to enlarge

Review and photos by Lesley Wimbush

When given the far more practical choice of flying to a recent Porsche event, or taking the proffered 911 Turbo Coupe and making a road trip of it – naturally I did the right thing.

I took the car.

Never mind that my bank account was screaming “the free ticket, fool” and that any freelance fees I made covering the event would be sucked in through the Porsche’s fuel door and emitted as one glorious, twin-turbo-charged flat-six bellow.

But one look at that curvaceous set of haunches, and I was lost.

With apologies to Winston Churchill, “there’s something about the outside of a Porsche that’s good for the inside of a man.” Or in this case, woman.

And this one, just like every Turbo since 1975’s original, is distinguished from its mere 911 brethren by its bulging rear fenders with gaping side air inlets, and “whale tail” rear spoiler. The eye can’t help but linger on the coiled hindquarters, before being led up and over the satisfactory curve of the roofline, the long, flowing lines of the hood, the neat and tidy face and finishing on the gaping front intakes.

The Agate Grey Metallic of my tester makes this car a much better photographer’s model than the eye-catching red or yellow preferred by most buff book covers.

Public Relations Manager Patrick St. Pierre mentioned the complaints he’d had over the number of silver and metallic grey press cars in the fleet – which I found surprising since the more subtle paint provides the perfect foil for the play of light and sheet metal.

My destination was a remote resort nestled in the Laurentian Mountains of Northern Quebec. I had more than 535 kilometres of highway and winding foothill roads to become acquainted with the Turbo Coupe.

That we’d recently experienced some brutal snowfalls wasn’t a big concern – having experienced the Porsche lineup’s ability to tackle the most challenging road conditions, I was completely confident and looking forward to the drive.

Invariably, people react with surprise when they see a car like this out in the middle of a winter squall.

Fair enough. Aside from its shock-inducing sticker price just shy of two-hundred thousand dollars, the Porsche 911 Turbo is an incredibly powerful sports car with 520 hp and 487 lb-ft. of torque (524 with overboost).

But shod with Pirelli SottoZero Winter tires, the all-wheel-drive Turbo is one of the most confidence-inspiring cars I’ve ever driven.

2014 Porsche 911 Turbo Coupe2014 Porsche 911 Turbo Coupe2014 Porsche 911 Turbo Coupe
2014 Porsche 911 Turbo Coupe. Click image to enlarge

My long drive incorporated the Hwy 401 corridor between Cobourg and Kingston, a nasty stretch that saw a lot of carnage this winter. The median was strewn with the carcasses of transport trucks, a sobering reminder to keep a safe distance, regardless of my confidence in the Porsche.

If you’re going to be stuck behind the wheel for the better part of six or seven hours, the 911 Turbo’s cabin is an extremely pleasant – if snug – place to be.

2014 Porsche 911 Turbo Coupe
2014 Porsche 911 Turbo Coupe. Click image to enlarge

You may point out the difficulties of climbing in or extricating one’s self from the tight confines of the Turbo’s cockpit; true enough, and this car is clearly not for you. The 911 Turbo is above all, a driver’s car. The highly bolstered seats hold the driver firmly in place, shoulders flat against the seat back, leaving the hands free for subtle steering inputs. The initially confusing array of switchgear on the cockpit-dividing centre console bank quickly becomes familiar beneath the fingertips.

The single transmission choice for the Turbo and Turbo S is the PDK. While purists will inevitably piss and moan at being deprived of their god-given right to grind and mash the gears themselves, the truth is that the PDK is one brilliant piece of kit, without which the Turbo (with Chrono Sport package) would never be able to sprint from 0-100 km/h in three seconds. Flat. If all autos were like this one, the word “slush-box” would be forever stricken from the lexicon.

Still not convinced? Try saying “Porsche Doppelkupplungsgetriebe” very slowly. Even better, have someone, preferably a hot German, whisper it in your ear.

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