Dakar Pioneer: Porsche 911 Forges a Path for Robust Models

Porsche’s new 911 Dakar was one of the hits of November’s 2022 Los Angeles auto show, but the rugged sports car is limited to 2,500 units worldwide, meaning supplies will be tight.

However, Porsche could potentially launch more rugged 911s, and perhaps even make them a permanent part of the 911 lineup, according to the brand’s chief, Oliver Blume.

In an interview with CAR published on Monday, Blume said rugged 911s could form a new model range within the 911 portfolio, similar to the GT range of track-focused models and the relatively recent retro range consisting of models like the latest Sport Classic and Targa 4S Heritage Design.

“Why not a third pillar, besides sporty GT and heritage models? Why not off-road, too?,” Blume said.

He stopped short of confirming such a range, and instead said Porsche will first look at how the Dakar performs on the market.

According to Blume, a 911 with extra capability meets the demand of buyers in some of Porsche’s newer markets, as well as from younger buyers. This demand is likely what led to Lamborghini recently launching the Huracán Sterrato and Ferrari following up the GTC4 Lusso with the new Purosangue SUV.

For the 911 Dakar, Porsche added modifications like a 2.0-inch suspension lift over a base 911 Carrera, plus a hydraulic lift system that can raise the ride height by an additional 1.2 inches.

A fixed rear spoiler, flared wheel arches, and all-terrain tires complete the rally-car look, while peak power of 473 hp is provided by the twin-turbo 3.0-liter flat-6 from the 911 Carrera 4 GTS.

In his same interview with CAR, Blume said Porsche is considering more retro 911s, including models that honor classic 911s from the 1970s and ’80s. We’ve already seen a modern GT3 RS that honors the original Carrera RS 2.7 from 1973, and the automaker is also working on a modern 911 that will likely honor the S/T track car from 1971.

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