Porsche 997 is First Produced

The Porsche Type 997 (Type Nine-Nine-Seven), also simply called the 997 (Nine-Nine-Seven) is the current version of the 911 sports car built by German manufacturer Porsche.

Production of the Carrera and Carrera S coupés began in July 2004, all-wheel drive Carrera 4 and Carrera 4S versions began shipping in November 2005, Turbo and GT3 derivatives went on sale in late 2006 and the 911 GT2 in 2007. In addition to the coupe and cabriolet versions, Targa versions of the Carrera 4 and Carrera 4S are available, which carry on with the "glass canopy" roof design used on all Targa 911s since the Type 993 Generation 911.

During 2009 Porsche made comprehensive changes to the 997 lineup which included small styling changes, increases in engine displacement across the board, the addition of Gasoline direct injection and the introduction of the company's new "PDK" Dual clutch transmission as well as other mechanical changes. As a result, the updated 997 models are faster, lighter and more fuel efficient than the outgoing versions and have somewhat better handling. In the case of the 997 Turbo, a comprehensively re-tuned all wheel drive system with an optional "torque vectoring" system was also a part of the upgrades package; in an October 2009 preliminary review, Car and Driver magazine estimated that when equipped with the PDK transmission, the updated Turbo should be capable of going from 0 to 60 miles per hour in three (3.0) seconds flat. As of December 2009, the 911 GT2 was the only variant in the 997 lineup not to have received any changes or upgrades.

The 997 is the most commercially successful 911 of all time, having sold 100,000 units between its introduction in 2004 and July of 2007. It has also received mostly positive reviews from the worldwide motoring press; even British motoring journalist Jeremy Clarkson, a known detractor of Porsche vehicles, noted that the 997 will "make love to your fingertips and stir your soul."

While the exterior styling is changed—in fact, the 997 Carrera S and Carrera 4S models share only their roof panels with their predecessor, the 996—it is again more evolution than revolution, typical of Porsche and the Carrera. Jeremy Clarkson has often voiced the opinion that Porsche had "the laziest design team in the world" due to the almost unnoticeable change in external appearance between the 997 and earlier models. The most notable difference between the 997 and the predecessor 996 is the return to circular headlights, like those of pre-996 Carreras, with separate indicator units. The interior has been almost entirely re-invented and all the controls are new; however, it is more reminiscent of classic 911 interiors than of the outgoing 996. The body in general remains low profile with a drag coefficient of 0.29 for the Carrera and .30 for the Carrera S.

The base Carrera has essentially the same 3,596 cc (3.596 L; 219.4 cu in) flat-6 (Boxer) engine from Type 996 Carrera. The Carrera S uses a new 3,824 cc (3.824 L; 233.4 cu in) flat-6 engine. The X51 Powerkit is available for S, 4S, Targa models, which increases engine power.

According to testing carried out by several American automotive publications, the Turbo model can accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in about 3.7 seconds with an automatic transmission and 3.9 seconds with the manual transmission. The Carrera S model is capable of going 0 to 60 mph (97 km/h) in 4.7 seconds, and carries a top speed of 300 km/h (190 mph), while the base Carrera model has 0 to 60 mph (97 km/h) acceleration in 4.8 seconds, with a top speed of 180 mph (290 km/h). Note, however, that these figures contradict the conservative official Porsche figures.

The viscous clutch all wheel drive system (997.1) sends between 5% and 40% of engine torque to the front wheels as needed.

Visually, the rear bodywork is a total of 88 mm (3.5 in) wider.