These days, it takes a ludicrous amount of thrust to get the desensitized public to drop its collective jaw. If the muscular 992 Turbo S and its 640-horsepower engine don't raise eyebrows, one must be reminded what the car represents. As a member of a small niche of vehicles somewhere between grand tourer and supercar, the 992 Turbo S deserves a little extra credit for its capabilities—especially since the abundance of new technology puts it on par with some of the fastest supercars today.
The 3.8-liter engine is based off the latest 3.0-liter 9A2 motor found in the Carrera and Carrera S, but features a completely redesigned charge air cooling system, larger VTG turbochargers in a symmetrical layout, and electrically adjustable wastegate flaps. With the help of of piezo injectors, these facets improve responsiveness, power, torque, emissions and revving ability. In no way is this new motor another turboengine with mid-range and little else—it has some of the zest, immediacy, and rewarding character of its GT-series siblings. As we can see here, while the torque plateaus around 5,000 rpm, the horsepower keeps climbing until the redline.
The 992 Turbo S has adopted two new intakes to ensure its engine's thirst is always satiated. Of course, there are the distinguishing air intakes above the rear wheel arches, but now, in front of the rear wings, two other airflows have also been incorporated through the rear lid grille. This means the new 911 Turbo S has four intakes with a larger overall cross-section and lower resistance.
Taking advantage of this increased airflow are larger VTG turbochargers. The diameter of the turbine wheels has been increased by five millimeters to 55 mm, while the 61 mm compressor wheel is now three millimeters larger. Interestingly, because the exhaust plumbing is now symmetrical on both banks, each turbocharger rotates in the opposite direction.
With wastegate control, charge-air cooling, turbocharger dimensions, and variable turbine geometry, turbo lag is truly a thing of the past. The eight gears to select from and 590 lb-ft of torque available between 2,500 and 4,000 rpm mean there simply isn't a dead spot with this engine; the top-end is as rewarding as the thrust down low.
Blinding shifts, four-wheel drive traction, and this endless wave of power all amount to some startling figures. The 992 Turbo S rockets to 60 mph in 2.6 seconds (2.7 seconds for the cabriolet), it covers the quarter-mile in just 10.5 seconds, and blitzes to 124 mph in just 8.9 seconds—the last statistic just 1 second behind that of the McLaren 720S.
If a machine with rear seats and all-weather ability can manage such speeds, it makes you wonder if the cramped two-seater is truly worth it.