Rather than giving some sort of long winded ode to the best new car available over the past year, it is probably a better public service to introduce everyone to the most disappointing car of 2012…
The Porsche 911 (991 in Zuffenhausen-speak) is so wholly disappointing, that they might as well call it a BMW. The 911 is supposed to be the practical sports car: simple, reliable, and ready to kill the dumb driver who lacks a basic understanding of physics. This great little car cost the world a great number of cocksure bankers and lawyers, which makes it the greatest thing to come of out Baden-Württemberg since chocolate cake. It can be argued that the Cayman has taken over the mantle of the 911, and the 991 is more a sucessor to the old 928. However, wouldn’t the overly logical Germans have gotten the numbers right? No, this new 911 still plays to the same audience, but it’s just designed to keep the dumb ones buying.
Whilst the combined governments of Berlin and the State of Brandenburg might have completely flubbed their opportunity to not repeat the mistake of Hamburg in the 1960’s in regards to the building of a proper hub airport, the Germans in the Western part of Europe’s most powerful country are fully capable of not fucking up. And, yes, I am fully aware that Dr Porsche was Austrian, but his Stuttgart based company is known for their engineering excellence. You see, Ferdinand Porsche was one of the the greatest engineering minds of the 20th century: he invented the mid-engined race car, which is the pattern found in all of todays top flight motorsports. The old (ex-Nazi) Doctor and his son (who the French had imprisoned as a war criminal) had designed a people’s car for their old pal Adolf, and after those rather unpleasant years ,for which all Germans are still -rightfully- apologizing, the Porche company decided to make a sports car out of it. Thus was born the Porche 356 in 1948, and by 1963 this was replaced by a highly evolved version of the car with an air-cooled boxer-6 that was labeled the 911.
The 911 was brilliant, and evolutionary changes saw this model through to 1998, when the first cracks in the Porsche armour began to show. This new 996 was a radical departure from the old car with: a water-cooled engine, a steeply raked windscreen, modern crash protection, electronic nannies, and it shared the whole front clip with the entry-level Boxer roadster. The car did still have the trademark, deadly oversteer that all rear engined cars exhibit, so Porsche purists eventually took to the car. The company, to their credit, did fix the ugly headlamps issue eventually, but the 911 remained the sports car you could drive everyday, albeit one that just might jump out and bite you in the ass.
Sadly, this is no longer the case. The Porsche 911 has ‘jumped the shark’, and I am more disappointed than a virgin bride who discovers her groom suffers from erectile dysfunction. Yes, it’s that bad. You see, Porsche put a roof on the mid-engined Boxster a few years ago, and in S form the Cayman was the true successor to the old 911. That car had the intangibles the 996 and 997 had given up in their quest for sophistication. The Cayman by being more expensive to buy but much cheaper to build than the Boxster is a cash cow for Porsche, but modern branding dictates that there has to be a model called 911. The Porsche clan being not one to not follow dictates, gave the (rich) people what they wanted… A new 911. It features a more sophisticated platform, techno-wizardry that would put the International Space Station to shame, a 7-speed real gearbox if you’d like instead of the flipper-flopper 2 pedal, more sound insulation, a Bentleyesque interior, and Electric Power Steering!
Pardon my German, but so ein Beschiß! Porsche could be forgiven for the VW based SUVs, the ugly but rather good Panamera, and screwing us on the price of the Cayman. But, this, this is unforgivable; this is, well, rather German actually. So people of America, Britain, and all the other good countries: take their towels of the sun loungers, laugh at them entering into a currency with the PIIGS and Pierre, walk around with your arms straight out whilst making a buzzing sound, give their girlfriends the chlamydia you got from some girl in the loo, and sing Two World Wars and One World Cup at the top of you lungs. Jerry is back to his old ways, and the Germans need to be collectively punished for this latest crime against humanity! Not only is the new Porsche 911 the Most Disappointing Car of 2012, but it’s also a warning to us all.