DECEMBER 2, 2015
Monday, November 30, 2015 at 07:31PM

Editor-In-Chief's Note: While perusing the prices for the new generation 2017 Porsche 911 Turbo and Turbo S (see below), it's clear to me that we've officially reached the point of no return when it comes to Porsche. Yes, the wildly successful purveyor of sporty SUVs and delicious sports cars has made a return to racing prominence with its Le Mans-winning 919 Hybrid, but once upon a time the Porsche 911 was at least somewhat affordable, at least if you swallowed real hard anyway. But over the last few years, sticker "creep" has completely overwhelmed the brand. A "base" 911 Coupe is now $89,400. A 911 Carrera S is $103,400, the 911 Targa is $108,600 and a 911 Carrera GTS comes in at $114,200. And the 911 Turbo starts at a whopping $159,200. Now I'm sure an argument can be put forth that these prices are in line with the performance/value equation that Porsche presents and that they're consistent with the sticker "creep" that has overwhelmed the industry, but $200,400 for a 911 Turbo S Cabriolet? Really? That's moving into a price territory that's borderline ridiculous. Yes, this is coming from someone who owned many 911s back in the day but still, back then a 911 was at least somewhat reachable. Now, Porsche has decided that they will move into super luxury price territory with the 911. But then again maybe that's fitting when it comes right down to it. After all, the 911 stopped being a 911 years ago. Today the 911 is actually a large car brimming with luxury accoutrements and (for the most part) an automatic transmission. It has become an "arrival" car for those who think it's what they should be driving, people blissfully unaware of what the Porsche 911 once represented, both to the car company and the people who lusted after them. It's no secret that hardcore Porsche driving enthusiasts are gravitating to the Cayman and all of its variants for the "true" Porsche driving experience. I guess we should be thankful that option still exists. -PMD

(Porsche images)
The 2017 Porsche 911 Turbo and 911 Turbo S will make their debut at the Detroit Auto Show in January. The top-of-the-line 911 models will be available in both coupe and convertible and offer improvements throughout. The 3.8 liter twin-turbo six-cylinder engine powering the 911 Turbo now develops 540HP, an increase of 20HP. The increase is achieved through modified intake ports in the cylinder heads, new fuel injectors, and higher fuel pressure. For those who must have more, the 911 Turbo S now has 580HP thanks to new turbochargers with larger impellers. In addition to a higher maximum torque (553 lb.-ft. in overboost compared to 523 lb.-ft. on the Turbo), the Turbo S also has a higher redline (7200 rpm instead of 7000). Porsche is still the only manufacturer to use turbochargers with variable turbine geometry in gasoline engines.
The 911 Turbo S Coupe accelerates from 0 to 60 miles per hour in 2.8 seconds. Its top track speed of 205 miles per hour has increased by 7 miles per hour. The 911 Turbo reaches 60 miles per hour in 2.9 seconds, with a top track speed of 198 miles per hour.

The Sport Chrono Package is now standard on all 911 Turbo models. This includes a new GT sport steering wheel (a 918 Spyder design) measuring 14.1 inches in diameter, and it's equipped with a mode switch consisting of a rotary ring with stepped positions that can be used to select one of the four drivetrain modes: Normal, Sport, Sport Plus or Individual. Another new feature of the Sport Chrono Package is the Sport Response button. A black button located in the center of the mode switch, it preconditions the engine and transmission for the best possible responsiveness. In this state, the vehicle can produce optimal acceleration for up to 20 seconds.

New options for all 911 Turbo models include radar-based lane change assist and a lift system for the front axle that can be used to increase ground clearance by 1.5 inches measured at the front spoiler lip. Sport Chrono Package, Park Assist front and rear including reversing camera, and LED headlights with the Porsche Dynamic Light System (PDLS) are now standard on all 911 Turbo models.

There's a bunch of other stuff available on these cars but suffice to say, this will be the ultimate Porsche for at least ten minutes, or until they do something hotter.

The new generation Porsche 911 Turbo will reach dealers in April 2016. Base MSRP is as follows (not including the destination charge): 911 Turbo, $159,200; 911 Turbo Cabriolet, $171,500; 911 Turbo S, $188,100; 911 Turbo S Cabriolet, $200,400. Remember when a 911 Porsche was semi-affordable? Yeah, we don't either.

(Volvo images)
Volvo PR minions say that the new Volvo S90 luxury sedan "is a bold entry into the luxury sedan market and sets a new standard with superior materials, technology, comfort and class-leading semi-autonomous features." We're quite sure you can read all about it elsewhere. Us? We have less-than-zero interest in it.

Editor-In-Chief's Note:
As I predicted when it appeared at the Frankfurt International Auto Show in September, Porsche will build a production version of the four-seat Mission E concept. It will be the first all-electric Porsche. "We are making a clear statement about the future of the brand," Chairman Wolfgang Porsche said in the statement. "Even in a greatly changing motoring world, Porsche will maintain its front-row position with this fascinating sports car." I also said that because of the the VW Group's disastrous diesel emissions scandal, that all of the German auto manufacturers have been embarrassed and that they would double-down on advanced technology to reestablish their reputation as the creators of most of the finest cars in the world. And it now looks like Porsche will take the lead in doing this. The Mission E's stats are indeed impressive: With two electric motors mounted at the front and rear of the car and its lithium-ion batteries integrated in the vehicle floor, it develops 600HP and will go more than 500km (310 miles) before needing a recharge, according to Porsche. The Mission E recharging is accomplished by an 800-volt charger that can renew 80 percent of the battery's capacity in about 15 minutes, which is a dramatic advance over existing systems. The Mission E will also be able to be charged wirelessly as an option. Porsche will spend 1 billion-euro ($1.09 billion) to produce the Mission E, which will be manufactured near the company's headquarters in Stuttgart, creating 1,000 jobs. The Mission E (or whatever they'll call it) will arrive in showrooms for the 2020 model year. -PMD

(Bugatti images)
Bugatti and the motor yacht builder Palmer Johnson are teaming up to build real expensive and exclusive boats. Under license granted by Bugatti, Palmer Johnson has designed a new series of open carbon-fiber sport yachts, featuring distinctive Bugatti design elements and advanced materials. The series bears the Niniette name and is available in three models from 42ft to 88ft. Prices for the smallest model start at €2 million.

Company founder Ettore Bugatti also developed racing boats and yachts in the 1930s. Niniette was the pet name of his daughter Lidia. Now, more than 80 years later, this tradition has been revived and the brand motto of “Art, Forme, Technique“ is once again being applied to a boat.

The PJ63 Niniette has a length of 63 feet and a beam of 20.3ft. On request, Bugatti can tailor the interior to meet customers’ individual requirements.

Check out the latest episode of The Autoextremist on AutoextremistTV below. -WG

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