Porsche has released additional details about its latest 911 Turbo S, this time paying particular emphasis on the Porsche Active Aerodynamics (PAA) technology. PAA first debuted in the 2014 911 Turbo, and all models from the 718 through to the Panamera and Taycan now feature active aerodynamic elements.

Aerodynamics is a tricky thing, as explained by Dr Thomas Wiegand, Porsche’s aerodynamics development chief. “We aerodynamic engineers are normally faced with a dilemma: a low drag coefficient is desirable for maximum speed and low [fuel] consumption, while a high downforce is advantageous for driving dynamics. However, the two characteristics contradict each other.

The PAA mitigates this problem with several active aero components. On the new 911 Turbo S, there are three – the active cooling air flaps and variable lip spoiler up front, as well as a tilting rear wing. All three components feature variable angles and work in tandem with the drive modes.

When the 992-generation 911 Carrera S debuted, it featured a new Wet Mode function, which transfers the aerodynamic balance to the rear axle for greater stability on slippery surfaces. There’s also an airbrake function to improve downforce when braking at higher speeds. For convertible models, PAA is used to channel air flow around the vehicle when the roof is open. In total, there’s up to eight different aerodynamic configurations, and each setting is specific, but rapidly interchangeable.

For the 911 Turbo S, the new variable front lip and rear spoiler increase downforce by 15%, ensuring better stability and dynamics at higher speeds. The maximum downforce in the Performance position (Sport Plus mode activated) is now around 170 kg.

During normal driving, a minimum drag coefficient value of 0.33 Cd is achieved with the flaps closed and the rear wing fully retracted. The flaps automatically open if extra cooling is required, but otherwise they remain closed at up to 70 km/h. From 150 km/h onwards, the flaps open linearly to achieve optimum air flow.

The plastic front lip (pictured above), on the other hand, has been improved so it can deploy or retract quicker. There are several actuators to help inflate the lip (the outer two always work in synchrony), and because the lip is made from flexible elastomer, it features three levels of angulation. At rest, magnets help keep the lip tucked under, and in Performance setting, the lip fully extends, thereby reducing lift. Here, the embossed “911 Turbo S” logo is also visible in the middle, because flex.

For the rear wing, Porsche says the carbon-fibre reinforced plastic piece weighs 440 grammes less than before, but has an 8% larger effective area. Of course, the angulation also varies according to the selected drive mode, and in Performance II mode it’s said to reduce drag when driving over 260 km/h.

Similarly, when Wet Mode is activated, the rear wing extends fully but does not tilt. This increases rear-end stability, and when slip is detected, the airbrake function automatically sends all three aero components to Performance position. The higher drag and downforce helps reduce braking distance, reducing the chances of losing control. So, what do you think?