Porsche announced that the new 911 Targa 4 and 911 Targa 4S will go on sale in November, 2006. For the first time, the Targa models will be available exclusively with permanent all-wheel drive and a rear body profile that is 1.73 in. wider than the standard 911 Carrera.
Porsche?s Targa concept, originally launched in 1966 and named after the storied Targa Florio race, was the first car of its type to offer all the driving sensations of a convertible without sacrificing the benefits of a solid roof. Then and now, the Targa continues to evoke a distinct cache unlike any other sports car, conveying serious sports car performance with the free-spirited thrill of open-air motoring.
As with the previous Targa model, the most striking feature of the elegant sports car is the large, sliding-glass roof and glass rear hatch, which blend sleekly into the classic 911 lines while providing the Targa with its own unique personality. A polished, anodized aluminum trim strip runs the entire length of the roof frame, emphasizing the 911?s classic silhouette.
The glass roof is not just a styling exercise, however, as it also provides for a light, airy interior. Moreover, the electrically operated roof panel can be retracted at all vehicle speeds in only seven seconds, revealing a spacious 4.8 square-foot (0.45 m/sq.) opening. Made of specially tinted two-ply glass, the new Targa?s translucent top is 4.2 pounds lighter than its predecessor, and wind noise is kept low at higher road speeds by a newly developed sealing system. With the top open, turbulence within the cabin is also reduced by a wind deflector, encouraging open-roof motoring even at lower ambient temperatures. A semi-translucent, black-cloth sunblind provides protection from excessive sunlight, and both the glass roof and roller blind are operated by a rocker switch located on the center console.
Gas struts make it easy to open the upward-tilting rear window, providing access to over 8 cubic-feet of cargo capacity with the rear seats in the folded position. The tailgate can either be unlocked by a switch on the driver?s-side doorsill or by the remote control button on the key fob.
The 911 Targa 4S features a 3.8-liter engine producing 355 horsepower. This model sprints from 0 to 60 mph in only 4.7 seconds, and has a top test-track speed of 179 mph.
Thanks to Porsche?s VarioCam Plus intake-valve control system, the 3.8-liter mill in the Targa 4S provides 295 lb-ft of torque at 4600 rpm. In both of the new Targa models, power is routed via a standard six-speed manual gearbox with short, precise shift throws. Optionally, customers can choose Porsche?s well-known five-speed Tiptronic S automatic transmission, which allows gear changes via rocker switches mounted on the steering-wheel spokes.
As with the Coupe and Cabriolet versions of the Carrera 4 and 4S, power is transmitted to the pavement by a standard all-wheel drive system featuring a viscous, multi-plate clutch. Depending on driving conditions, the all-wheel-drive setup distributes between 5- and 40-percent of the engine?s torque to the front wheels. The all-wheel-drive system ensures well-balanced proportioning of power in corners during spirited driving and improves traction on wet or slippery road surfaces.
The Porsche 911 Targa 4 and 911 Targa 4S go on sale in North America in November, 2006.
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