The latest-generation 911 is set to debut this fall, but in addition to the familiar derivatives, Porsche is readying a little something different this time, with the Clubsport, the Targa, and the Speedster.
Milking the 911 range by constantly adding fresh product is just good business. In the past, for instance, the turbo-look option has always been a license to print money, which is why Porsche's new management team is likely to reintroduce it across the board. It also plans to reinvigorate the Targa model, and revive the Speedster and Clubsport.
Clubsport: Less, and more
One intermittently used approach concerns the Clubsport or CS pack, which made the customers pay more money for less weight and less equipment. Thanks to new low-calorie materials such as carbon fiber and titanium, it is relatively easy to concoct a featherweight 2-seat 911 CS. In addition to ditching the vestigial rear seats, the Clubsport would have composite hang-on panels, no-frills cabin trim, a low-friction PDK gearbox, single-piece bucket seats, a compact A/C system, a lightweight audio system and speakers, hollow-spoke alloy wheels, and a blueprinted engine.
Targa: No longer just a big sunroof
After three generations of sandwich-glass-sunroof, would-be Targas, the designers at Zuffenhausen are reverting to the original roof concept for the upcoming new 911 Targa. No, we're not talking about a zip-out plastic rear window and a rigid, lift-off mid-section that doesn't fit in the trunk (as in the very first 911 Targa). Instead, product planning wants to recreate the second generation, which featured a folding removable top panel and a heated glass rear window. The most prominent design detail of this classic Porsche roof treatment was the substantial roll bar available in anodized silver or matte black. For the new 911, Porsche is preparing a modern iteration of that theme, which should look particularly fetching thanks to a lower roofline, a more radically angled roll bar, a wraparound rear window and the optional turbo-look bodywork with an extra-voluptuous rear end and 21-inch wheels. The new Targa is due in late 2013 or early 2014.
Speedster: The legendary designation returns
Another popular 911 variation is the Speedster, which could be derived from the new cabriolet at very little incremental cost. Mating a turbo-look lower body to a bespoke upper with a dramatically lower roofline, the new Speedster will likely be available in two different forms: a minimalistic pseudo-racer and an all-in high-end boulevard cruiser not unlike the limited-edition 2010 model. Both variants would feature a cut-down, more steeply raked windshield; unique side windows; and a Speedster-specific fabric roof instead of the folding soft-shell hardtop fitted to the regular 911 cabriolet.