It was in 1984 that Porsche won the prestigious Paris-Dakar rally with his legendary 911 4×4. A car now adored by the automotive world and which the manufacturer has chosen to bring back to life with the current generation of the 911.
It was within the framework of the Los Angeles Auto Show that Porsche invited the team of the Car Guide the unveiling of the new Porsche 911 Dakar, whose production is limited to 2,500 units, which will be vintage 2023 and 2024.
Based on the 911 GTS 4 with PDK gearbox, the 911 Dakar is raised by 50 mm, but thanks to its adjustable suspension, it can be raised up to 80 mm compared to the GTS version. Naturally, the car inherits the 473-hp 3.0-liter turbocharged engine taken from the 911 GTS, with the only distinction being a high-efficiency cooling system taken from the 911 Turbo. Very fast and weighing only 10 kg more than a 911 Carrera GTS 4 with a PDK gearbox (for a total of 1,605 kg), the 911 Dakar completes the 0-100 km/h in 3.4 seconds. However, due to the tires, the top speed is limited to 240 km/h. Interestingly, however, the suspension can be raised to its maximum level until the car reaches 170 km/h, after which it automatically lowers to its minimum level.
Built to go anywhere
The 911 Dakar is obviously designed to be able to face the worst conditions. Whether driving in sand, mud, dirt or snow, it holds its own thanks to its different driving modes. Porsche is also adding two modes that are specific to it, namely the “Off-Road” and “Rally” modes. The latter makes it possible to drive at high speed by channeling more torque to the rear axle with a view to a more wandering rear axle. Then, when selecting the “Off-Road” mode, there is a distinct management of the performance of the transmission as well as an automatic raising of the suspension. Note that when one of these two modes is selected, the gunshot mode amplifies wheel spin by 20% compared to the “Sport” mode.
It is Pirelli that Porsche has chosen to trust to fit the 911 Dakar. A car delivered as standard with Pirelli Scorpion All Terrain Plus in its specific format, since it is fitted with size P245/45ZR19 tires at the front and P295/40ZR20 at the rear. According to Porsche, these tires are able to offer optimum performance in sand and dirt while offering exceptional comfort and quietness on the road. However, it is possible to obtain genuine summer or winter tires, also from the Pirelli brand, as an option via the dealer.
Quite a look!
Aesthetically, the Dakar is of course distinguished by its exclusive bumpers, by a hood taken from the 911 GT3 as well as by rims clearly inspired by those of the model of yesteryear.
We also notice that the side air intakes have been redesigned to resist shocks that can be caused by stones. Then, in order to properly protect the mechanical elements, Porsche added underbody protection plates made of stainless steel, which are however 0.8 mm thick. As for the rear spoiler, it is fixed and lightened to optimize the performance of the car. Porsche is also using lighter windows and a lighter battery (taken from the new 911 T), also with a view to reducing weight.
On the roof side, Porsche has fitted the 911 Dakar with a 12-volt socket for connecting fog lights. An optional roof rack that can accommodate up to 42 kilos of load is also offered. As for the interior presentation, it harmonizes with the adventurous aspect of the model, offering synthetic leather upholstery called Race-Tex. Also note that like the 911 T, the car has no rear seats.
One of the most striking elements of the 911 Dakar is certainly the Rallye Design package offered at a cost of $32,490. The latter has a skin directly inspired by that of the winning vehicle of the Paris-Dakar, where however the inscription Rothmans (sponsoring cigarette manufacturer at the time) is replaced by the inscription Roughroads.
In addition to the rims painted in white, a blue and white paint with red and gold decorative bands is delivered with this set, on which you can also integrate the number of your choice for identification on the doors.
The 2023 Porsche 911 Dakar will obviously be offered in small quantities on the Canadian market, with a starting price set at $247,300. Note that the number of units featuring the Rallye Design package is not limited, which suggests that a majority of buyers could select it.
In video: we drove the 2022 Porsche 911 GT3 on the track!
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Porsche 911 Dakar 2023: reincarnation of a legend
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