DRIVEN: Porsche 911 Turbo S – the mega 991 on track

Porsche 911 Turbo S Sepang- 32

Porsche 911 Turbo. A name synonymous with ballistic pace, mega AWD traction and everyday usability. A stupendously fast supercar you can use to cross borders in record time, and then drive to the office in. A RM1,750,000 dream machine.

Yes, yes, yes and yes. But transcribing my experience with the Porsche 911 Turbo S into a written article has been a challenge. Here’s a machine that sits on top of the 991 food chain, has a name that demands respect and looks the business, yet deliver so little drama on the supercar scale.

Add in the fact that yours truly was behind the wheel for just a short spin, on track, and it becomes one head scratcher of a story. Here’s my attempt.

Porsche 911 Turbo S Sepang- 10

The latest Porsche 911 Turbo S was first shown to the world in May last year, together with the ‘standard’ 911 Turbo. The latter is powered by a 3.8 litre flat-six fortified with two variable turbine geometry turbochargers. Paired to Porsche’s seven-speed twin-clutch Doppelkupplung, its 520 hp and 660 Nm propels the Turbo from 0 to 100 km/h in just 3.2 seconds.

Slow coach? The 911 Turbo S bumps things up a (big) notch – with an extra 40 hp (560 hp) and 50 Nm (710 Nm), the most powerful series production 911 ever does the century sprint in just 3.1 seconds. Top speed is 318 km/h. The Turbo S’ extra performance comes from higher boost pressure (1.2 bar) and a 200 rpm increase in max engine speed to 7,200 rpm.

The Sport Chrono package, optional in the Turbo, is standard on the Turbo S. Included is an “overboost” function that increases maximum charge pressure by around 0.15 bar for up to 20 seconds in the middle speed range. This increases maximum torque to 750 Nm. In a car as rapid as this, you won’t be having a full boot on the accelerator for more than 20 seconds, so the 750 Nm is as good as permanent.

Porsche 911 Turbo S Sepang- 18

Power is nothing without control, a tyre maker once preached. Here, power is matched by Porsche’s all-wheel drive system (PTM) with electro-hydraulic control of its multi-plate coupling. It is assisted by the new active rear axle steering, active aerodynamics and Porsche Torque Vectoring (PTV) Plus. Also in are PDCC roll stabilisation system, PCCB ceramic brakes and dynamic engine mounts as part of Sport Chrono.

The Army of Zuffenhausen watched over proceedings, ensuring yours truly didn’t end up beached in the Sepang gravel. There’s gobs of traction out of corners, but untidy driving can cause the electronics to work overtime to keep you on course. We weren’t allowed to deactivate PSM (ESP), but I wouldn’t have done so in any case. RM1,750,000, remember?

Speaking of untidy, the 911 Turbo S’ sheer speed meant that we occasionally approched corners at too high a speed, or powered out too early. The latter tends to happen with grippy fast cars as one pushes the envelope, just to see what it’s ultimately capable of. There is such a thing as too fast, for my skill level at least. The left-hand drive tester also made apex clipping slightly trickier than usual.

Porsche 911 Turbo S Sepang- 33

The unadorned three-spoke steering is connected to a very quick and direct rack (rear-axle steering points the rear wheels in the same direction as the fronts by 2.8 degrees above 80 km/h, opposite direction below 50 km/h for a tighter turning circle), and the Turbo S changes direction with alacrity not usually associated with fat bodies. But that’s not what jumps at you upon acquaintance.

It’s the ferocious way the Turbo S picks up speed that’s more memorable; full-bore acceleration is accompanied by a growly soundtrack with some pop and crackle on the sides. The initial surge is such that the natural tendecy is to short shift and ride the big wave of torque all over again.

No stray Kancils and kapcais at Sepang, so I managed to breach 240 km/h on the pit straight before the Turbo threw out its other trump card. I’d argue that the PCCB ceramic brakes are even more impressive than the explosive acceleration, hauling the 1.6-tonne missile from autobahn speed to pedestrian speed for turns one and two with real authority, straight as an arrow. The stopping power on offer here needs to be experienced to be believed.

By now, you would have gathered that the Porsche 911 Turbo S is an amazingly fast car (I hope!), with anchors to match. It does its thing while providing a sense of safety and stability to the driver that, I imagine, will be even more valuable when blasting down an unfamiliar road, in less than ideal conditions.

The Turbo S will easily cope with what most driver skill sets and roads can throw at it, such is its capability, but is the ultimate 911 the 991 you really want? We say want, because no one needs a Porsche 911 Turbo S.

We didn’t hop straight into the Turbo S at Sepang, but were served a “starter” in form of the 911 Carrera 4S. Think of the white car you see below as a senior manager in 911 Corp – with ‘4’ and ‘S’ badges under its belt, the C4S can order the exec Carrera around, but has to kowtow to the Turbo S, also known as The Boss.

Hanging out with the 4S proved to be a more fun and less intimidating experience. Its 3.8 litre flat-six may be two turbos and 160 horses down on The Boss, but the RM990k C4S is no slouch. 400 hp and 440 Nm delivers a 0-100 km/h time of 4.1 seconds, and top speed is three km/h short of 300.

Porsche 911 Turbo S Sepang- 38

The C4S lacks the Turbo S’ brutal pace of the blocks, and momentum is delivered in a more linear fashion. The naturally-aspirated flat-six sings a sweeter tune, and is deliciously zingy up until 7,800 rpm. In contrast to the Turbo S experience, the NA six-pot encourages you to use up every inch of rev before pulling the next gear. Less efficient maybe, more emotion for sure.

Not as fast, but certainly more satisfying for this writer. The C4S felt more natural and organic – like a dance partner that I was more in sync with – while still benefiting from the amazing ceramic brakes and AWD security from the Turbo S. I even prefer the looks of the lesser model – more classic, less aggressive – over the wings and scoops of the range topper.

I didn’t expect to prefer the hors d’oeuvre over the main course, but it happened. Maybe because I’m not a boss. The successful, uncompromising types with the priority bank account to buy a 911 would probably want the best or nothing, and the Turbo S – with its amazing performance and cachet – is the 911 that will match their status perfectly. Like that trophy wife.

Looking to sell your car? Sell it with Carro.

10% discount when you renew your car insurance

Compare prices between different insurer providers and use the promo code 'PAULTAN10' when you make your payment to save the most on your car insurance renewal compared to other competing services.

Car Insurance

Danny Tan

Danny Tan loves driving as much as he loves a certain herbal meat soup, and sweet engine music as much as drum beats. He has been in the auto industry since 2006, previously filling the pages of two motoring magazines before joining this website. Enjoys detailing the experience more than the technical details.



  • Semi-Value (Member) on Jun 08, 2014 at 5:33 pm

    990k for a carrera 4s…porsche prices have certainly went up a lot…i remember that was what the turbo used to cost for not much more

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 1
  • Jeremy. on Jun 08, 2014 at 6:06 pm

    I like the car a lot actually, all arounder. But the centre console painted in red is just a complete NO. Just no. And I’m also sure that this option isn’t cheap. Nope, I don’t hate them!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 2
    • lonelyobserve (Member) on Jun 08, 2014 at 8:44 pm

      If you do not like what Sime Darby Auto Performance’s Malaysia provide for package on Porsche vehicles, just go to Porsche website and configure your own Porsche, although price maybe different from the Malaysia package.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1
      • Jeremy. on Jun 08, 2014 at 11:17 pm

        I don’t think the red option comes as standard, it must be an option. Speaking of options, ughhhh. Don’t even think about it, Porsche will charge you absolutely everything in an expensive way! But still, it’s a Porsche. Love it.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1
        • lonelyobserve (Member) on Jun 09, 2014 at 3:01 pm

          Correct. That colour is an option. I tried the car configurator and 911 Turbo S has various options to choose for interior colouring.

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1
  • spongewai on Jun 08, 2014 at 9:40 pm

    a crazy price for Porsche sports car except SUV or Panamera price…

    SIME DARBY, screw you la lol

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2
    • Dey macha, sports caris cater for ppl with class la. Not any average joes can buy it. U can see,malaysian who owned supercars sometimes still act like ah beng. In overseas, ppl who owned these beast are all a level or few higher than us. Even mentality is different.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1
  • no mention of standard turbo here. I heard they don’t sell it. any reason why?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0
  • Every time I see the price for any real sports car in Malaysia I cry a little tear for Malaysians. Stay strong brothers.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1
  • nabill (Member) on Jun 09, 2014 at 1:59 am

    Its like too much power that cannot b exploited in real world,get a caymen S n save so much

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0
  • Great car but a hefty price tag. I will get the Nissan GTR instead for a much cheaper price with the performance of a 991 (911 turbo).

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 4
    • yihang (Member) on Jun 09, 2014 at 9:31 am

      Bro,they are different thing…u can have a gtr35 performance if you spend some some in a kancil,I had see a kancil defeated a gtr in sepang drag race…yes…it is faster…but they are just different category and can’t be compare..

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 3
    • GT3 (Member) on Jun 10, 2014 at 4:49 pm

      Dude, cars are mooooorrreee than performance figures.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0
  • Pronsche on Jun 09, 2014 at 9:01 am

    Damn it! Another car which is not relevant to my bank balance

    Cash? Don’t ask

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0
  • kington on Jun 09, 2014 at 10:45 am

    A GTR is mighty fast, but as fast as it goes, it’s plain by comparison. Even a standard Cayman gives more fun that the GTR.

    I’ve only driven a 996 turbo many years back and that was one heck of a car. Al lot of us don’t see the meaning in everyday performance car in a 911 article, but trust me, you will reach for the keys of the turbo even is you have a 12C or Ferrari 458, 599 and the likes in your garage.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 2
  • heybadigol on Jun 09, 2014 at 11:03 am

    If nobody really needs the Turbo S, then who wants the The Ferrari The Ferrari The LaFerrari? I wonder if you floor the throttle on that Ferrari, and then slam the brakes hard, whether the earth’s axis will move a bit???

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1
  • cosmo on Jun 09, 2014 at 6:02 pm

    it cost way too much for a Porsche… a Porsche brand doesn’t that much of premium price…. i’m off with a GTR too… and guys, 911 it looks way too alike to a VW beetle…. abit gay actually…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 6
    • dude,no one turns their head to a GTR but everyone turns their head when a Porsche passes-by. Its a fact. GTR is so common in Malaysia. As a saying goes, everyone is different, why drives the same car?

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1

Add a comment