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For more than 50 years, the Porsche 911 has been considered a paragon among high-performance sports cars. Few rivals can match its combination of wholly iconic style and performance. Just about every year lately, Porsche has added new versions of the 911, and 2016 unleashes yet another pair to the already lengthy trim-level list.

What's New for 2016

After adding two new Targa editions to the 911 lineup last year, Porsche has two more ready for 2016: the GT3 RS and Targa 4 GTS.

Porsche 911

Choosing Your Porsche 911

With so many enticing possibilities, selecting a new 911 can be a daunting task. Each model is unique, whether due to distinct engine upgrades or subtle trim refinements. Every 911 delivers in both appearance and performance. So, your decisions boil to down just how much power you want, whether to get rear-drive or all-wheel drive, and how much you can afford to pay.

Porsche 911 Seats

Carrera Models

The “entry level” to the 911 family is the Carrera line. Each model offers a progressive increase in power and refinement. Two primary engines are offered, and each model is available as either a coupe or a convertible (Cabriolet).

Carrera

Priced at $84,300 in coupe form, the base 911 Carrera contains a rear-mounted 3.4-liter, direct-injected flat-six engine that sends 350 horsepower to a seven-speed manual transmission. It has rear-wheel drive, a SPORT button, four-way power seats, a 7-inch touch screen, dual-zone air conditioning, nine-speaker audio, Bluetooth capability, and bi-xenon headlights. Optional equipment includes Porsche’s seven-speed PDK automated manual transmission, Porsche Torque Vectoring Plus, 14 or 18-way power seats, Burmester or Bose audio systems, and adaptive cruise control.

Carrera 4

Moving to the Carrera 4 increases body width by 1.7 inches, creating a wider, lower platform. It also adds all-wheel drive and Porsche Traction Management.

Carrera S

The S has a 3.8-liter direct-injected flat-six engine with rear-wheel drive and a seven-speed manual transmission, which combine to deliver 400 horsepower. Added to the Carrera’s features are Porsche Torque Vectoring Plus (for increased steering response and precision) and active suspension management.

Carrera 4S

Blends the performance equipment of the S with the larger body size of the Carrera 4, and adds all-wheel drive.

Carrera GTS

The new GTS moves performance up another notch, courtesy of its 430-horsepower engine and PDK transmission. A Sport Chrono package is included, and active dampers yield a lower ride height.

Carrera 4 GTS

Equipped with all-wheel drive, the 4 GTS unleashes Porsche’s 430-horsepower engine.

Porsche 911 Side

Targa 4 and Targa 4S

With the Targa 4 and Targa 4S, Porsche resurrected the classic sculptured Targa roof design, which hadn’t been available on a 911 since the 1980s.

Targa 4

Starting with the standard features of the Carrera, the Targa 4 coupe adds a fixed, all-glass rear windscreen and park assist. Porsche describes it as “an open-top sports car with the feel and comfort of a 911 Coupe.”

Targa 4S

The Targa 4S starts with all the features and engine of the Carrera S and adds the fixed, all-glass rear windscreen, plus park assist.

Targa 4 GTS

Targa-roofed version of the GTS has all-wheel drive and the 430-horsepower engine.

Porsche 911 Ineterior

Turbo and Turbo S

If you like the Carrera S but crave more, consider the Turbo editions. Both are available as coupes or convertibles.

Turbo

Porsche gave the 911 Turbo a 520-horsepower, turbocharged 3.8-liter six-cylinder engine, with the PDK transmission. The Turbo features active all-wheel drive, rear-axle steering, traction management, VarioCam Plus system, Porsche Torque Vectoring Plus and a rear spoiler. Also standard: a 12-speaker Bose audio system and park assist.

Turbo S

Adds a variation of the 3.8-liter engine that achieves 560 horsepower. In Cabriolet guise, this is the price leader of the 911 line, at $182,700.

GT3 and GT3 RS

Designed for the race track, the GT3 is a rear-drive two-seater with a 475-horsepower 3.8-liter V6 engine. Its PDK transmission is tuned specifically to the GT3 and rear-axle steering. The new GT3 RS “breaks boundaries,” according to Porsche, with a 500-horsepower engine and PDK transmission, able to deliver 0-60 mph acceleration in a mere 3.1 seconds. Among the details, front wheel arches hold 12-slat air outlets.

CarsDirect Tip

With so many 911 choices, it would be easy to spend far more than intended. Our recommendation: don't lose sight of your true priority, and adjust accordingly. After all, each 911 ranks among the most legendary sports cars in the world.

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