2009 Porsche 911 Carrera — Flash Drive
This 2009 review is representative of model years 2005 to 2011.
By Staff of MSN Autos
What can I say about one of the best, most refined sports cars on the planet? The 2009 Porsche 911 Carrera is just about perfect. From the impressive road handling to the crisp steering to the supersmooth PDK automatic transmission, this machine is really in a class of its own. Not only does it go like spit, the 911 Carrera also delivers pretty impressive fuel economy: I averaged 23 mpg in mixed city/highway driving. Cargo room is decent, as you can store suitcases on top of the folded rear seats and also use the small trunk under the hood. My only complaint about the rear-engine 911 is that the bodywork is devoid of sharp angles and interesting lines. After 45 years of innovation, I wish the exterior design looked more exciting. –Joe Chulick
The base Porsche 911 makes a wonderful Grand Touring (GT) car. Its smooth acceleration and quiet interior cosset the driver while hiding a sporty jump in performance if the mood takes you. The pity is that the real performance of a 911 isn't available to someone who buys just a basic 911. You'll need to spend an additional $2,500 for the sports exhaust so it actually sounds like a true sports car, or almost $3,000 for the active suspension and the "sport chrono" option just so that Porsche provides you with a dashboard button that unleashes the true performance of the fabulous engine. I find it infuriating that the base Porsche has a great car hidden within, yet the automaker has found a way to rob you of the experience unless you fork over yet more money. That's truly disappointing. –Paul Hagger
The 911 easily makes my short-list of cars I'd love to have parked in my garage. Our test car was the base-level model, but still provided the excellent level of performance one expects from a Porsche. Power is plentiful and comes with a satisfying roar. While the quick-shifting PDK transmission lets the driver move through the gears much faster, I'd still prefer the manual transmission. As in most Porsche models, the ride is quite stiff, which is especially noticeable on rough roads. But handling is superb. In addition, Porsche's stability system is not overly intrusive, unlike that found in some other brands, and it's a nice safety feature. The seats are comfortable and the driving position is perfect - the only niggle would be to have stickier tires, an issue easily fixed. Here in the Pacific Northwest, where Porsches seem common, it's still the cool car to be seen in. I would own one in a heartbeat. –Perry Stern