We’ve done some comparison posts in the past, such as the Porsche Cayman vs Boxster, but have yet to address the very popular Porsche 911. We’ll provide a short history of the Porsche 911. It was first introduced in 1964 and has had 8 different generations. The first four generations had air-cooled engines, while the last 4 had water-cooled engines. The 997, or 6th generation 911, came out in 2004 and was produced up until 2013. The 991, or 7th generation 911, came out in 2011 and was produced until 2019. When it comes to choosing a Porsche 911, there are many factors to consider. Let’s look at a head-to-head comparison of Porsche 997 vs 991 and see how they stack up against each other.
Porsche 997 vs 991: which is better? The 991 was a generation that was highly anticipated, yet it does not look significantly different than its predecessor. It also does not have the urgent and much-delayed update that the 964 did. The Porsche 991 is a landmark model that ushered in a new era for the company. Although it may not look much different from the 997, the 991 featured a 3.2 engine that had many updated and modernized components under the hood. This was just the first step in an extensive updating process that took ten years to complete. The 991 is a significant model for Porsche as it marks the 50th anniversary of the Porsche 911 series. This is an important milestone in automotive history, and the 991 is a rare example of an anniversary model.
Porsche 997 vs 991: Style
The visual differences between the 991 and the 997 are so subtle that a second glance is required to confirm which model you’re looking at. The newer Porsche 991 is longer, wider, and has a bigger wheelbase than the 997. Although it may sound like a huge change, it is actually pretty subtle in person. The 991 features a lower roofline and a more raked windscreen, making it appear shorter. This is the most noticeable change that Porsche has created. The all-new 991 from Porsche is a stunning sight to behold, and its elevated rear quarters are sure to turn heads. With slimmer brake and sidelights, this new feature is sure to impress onlookers everywhere.
As seen in the picture above, the 991s headlights and DRLs are slightly more modern than the 997s. They are a larger oval that wraps around the wing, giving it a more aggressive and modern look. The 991 headlamps and wheelbase have also been lengthened by 100mm. The 991s simple details, such as mounting the side mirrors on doors instead of the window frame, are a nice acknowledgment of the traditional Porsche style.
Porsche 997 vs 991: Comfort
Porsche wanted to improve the quality and equipment of the cabin in the 991, and they have certainly accomplished that. The 997’s interior was good, except for the tendency for the driver’s seat bolster to wear and fray. However, the 991 Porsche has a much more luxurious interior with far more durable wearing surfaces. They increased the dimensions of the 911 cabin to create a spacious feel, unlike previous 997. The 991 chassis allows for more movement of the seats and also provides more space in the backseat for more luggage and passengers. Porsche also introduced a deeper boot in the front of the 991. The former 997s seats have been replaced with more comfortable and spacious seats. Since they are larger, it allows for a more comfortable driving experience.
Porsche 991 vs 997: Cockpit
The power steering wheel on the 991 is wider and flatter than the one used in the 997s. The 997 layout is largely preserved in the dashboard, with the main change being the conversion of the warning light fourth dial into a more useful information screen that replicates the display. The input includes the sat-nav display and the cornering G force readout provided by the optional Sport Plus Chrono. The 991’s central info screen is also larger. The most noticeable feature of the 991 is the raised center console that houses the gearshift. This was first seen on the Carrera GT and has since been extended to the Panamera and Cayenne. This generation was the first to see an electronic parking brake, which we don’t really love.
The 911’s cockpit is more spacious and luxurious than that of a typical sports car, making it more comfortable for extended driving trips. The only reaction to the interior changes between the 997 and 991 has been the ‘Panamerisation’ which seems to be taking the 911 further away from its original ethos as a sports car. Porsche’s argument with the 911 is that it has always been a premium car and that the new interior reflects the expectations of luxury compact car buyers in 2012. They also explained that upmarket buyers have come to expect a certain level of quality and refinement in their vehicles, which is what Porsche is delivering with the latest redesign in the 991.
Porsche 997 vs 991: Transmission and Chassis
The 991 only retains the 9A1 engine and PDK transmission from the 997, while the rest of the engine is brand new. Therefore, the main difference between these two engines lies under the sheet metal. The PDK on the 997 is still the same, but the manual gearbox has been upgraded to a seven-speed. This allows for better fuel economy and self-shifting pleasure. Porsche 991 North American sales were 50/50 between the PDK automatic transmission and manual. While the Porsche 997 saw 70/30 between the PDK to manual. The 997s underpinnings were the same as the 996’s, which had a remarkable 13-year lifespan.
The Porsche 996 has undergone several changes since its introduction in 1997. In order to accommodate the larger wheels of the 997, more space was required. To meet evolving safety standards that require impact absorption from different angles, the 997 chassis has been revised periodically. Porsche unveiled that the 991 911 featured a longer and wider body than the 997. The new 991 chassis is based on the 964 platform, or the 3rd generation 911, and includes MacPherson struts at the front, drive to the front axle, and a complete overhaul of the air passage beneath the car to improve stability.
Porsche 997 vs 991: Handling
The 991 Porsche features a longer wheelbase and a wider track for increased stability. The revised front and rear running gears reduce oversteer, making this a 911 characteristic that is less pronounced in the new model. The 911 is an invitation for drivers who want to enjoy outstanding cornering agility and a smoother ride. Although it may feel larger, the 991 has the same excellent handling as the 997 and can handle imperfections better. This results in a more enjoyable driving experience. Porsche’s new electro-mechanical steering system provides drivers with a sense of refinement. However, some drivers may find that the first version lacks mechanical interaction. Despite this, the accuracy of the system is impeccable.
The 997 is the best car in its class for grip. Its cornering ability is unsurpassed on public roads, making it the perfect choice for anyone looking for a top-performing vehicle. The 991 is a revelation. The 997s tendency to understeer into bends has been eliminated. The combination of the 991s longer chassis and wider front track contributes to a sharper turn-in, more balanced cornering with a touch of oversteer — making it easier for drivers to exploit the full potential of the 991. This car’s handling is extremely confidence-inspiring. It feels very stable even when cornering at high speeds, so you can relax and enjoy the ride.
Porsche 997 vs 991: Brakes
The Porsche brakes are an industry benchmark and have remained unchanged. The new Porsche 911 Carrera features 325mm discs and four-pot calipers in front, which are improved with cooling thanks to new ducts. Zuffenhausen’s 911 brakes have been a benchmark for their reliability, bite, and stability, and the 991s continue this tradition.
Porsche 997 vs 991: Engine Performance
Porsche’s primary goals for the 911 were to improve performance, fuel economy, and reduce emissions. This required an update to the car itself, which Porsche has become a master at.
The 911 has always been known for its performance and fuel economy. However, with each new generation, the weight of the car increases. Porsche engineers have worked hard to keep the 991 as light as possible by using an all-aluminum mockup during the planning stages. This has proven to be much heavier than expected but is still a great option for those looking for a high-performance car. Internal changes to the 997’s 9A1 engine were made to reduce friction losses and lighten reciprocating parts. The 991 S model retains its 3.8-liter engine capacity, while the base Carrera switches to a more powerful 3.4-liter Boxster Cayman S tuned for 350bhp. Porsche claims that this will provide better performance and fuel economy than the previous 997 3.6-liter model.
The electronic variable oil pump in the 997 models is designed to increase oil pressure only when the engine detects greater stress from track driving or hard cornering. This allows the engine to conserve energy while still providing adequate lubrication for high-performance driving conditions. The philosophy of energy-saving electric steering has led to the development of an energy recovery system that collects kinetic energy from deceleration and feeds it into the battery. This system allows for a more efficient use of resources, without sacrificing performance or power.
Porsche 997 vs 991: Performance Numbers
A stopwatch is the only way to distinguish the old 911 from the new one in terms of acceleration. However, the new 991 feels faster because it’s lighter and stiffer. The new Porsche 991 Carrera PDK is an improvement on its predecessor in every way, except for the maximum speed which remains at 178 mph. The power output was increased by 5bhp, and the torque output is an additional 3 lb-ft. The car also accelerates to 62 mph a tenth of a second faster than the 997, while boasting lower fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.
Porsche 997 vs 991: Which is Better?
The 991 is a much better car than the 997. This shouldn’t be a surprise since the 991 is newer than the 997. The 991 is packed with radical changes that make it more engaging for a driver, while still providing all the features and amenities that you’d expect from a luxury compact vehicle. If you’re in the market for a high-performance sports car, the 991 should definitely be at the top of your list. This is not to say that the 997 is bad by any means, but if you have the funds to spend, the 991 is the way to go.
The suspension on the 911 has been completely redesigned, both front and back. The Porsche 991 Carrera provides a more balanced corner entry than the 997, offering drivers the refinement and stability of a GT with the poise and handling of an old-school sports car. This is a remarkable feat that makes the Carrera a truly exceptional vehicle.
Porsche 997 vs 991: Price
A new Porsche Carrera 991 is priced at £71,449 compared to £67,270 for the final 997 – that’s a six percent increase in cost. But this isn’t just any old Porsche; it’s been completely re-engineered with a better cabin and greater dynamic capabilities than the 997. So, if you’re looking for the ultimate driving experience, the new Carrera 991 is the way to go.
Porsche 997 vs 991 Conclusion
The Porsche 991 is a remarkable achievement and the price increase for such a drastic upgrade is modest. It offers drivers the unique “Porsche feel” that has made the brand so popular. The base 3.4 Porsche Carrera model is the best combination of economy and performance. We’re excited about Porsche’s seemingly endless ability to extract more power and economy out of the flat-six. This leads us to believe that this iconic piece of engineering architecture might even survive into the next generation of 911s.