The Porsche 911 has been soldiering on as the benchmark of performance cars since 1963. Since it’s inception, there have been eight generations and a slew of variants that make up the model line. The 911 Turbo variant in particular has always caught the eyes of Porsche aficionados, as it combines the perfect blend of performance and GT characteristics. Back when the 911 was primarily air cooled and turbocharge technology wasn’t as refined as today, the 911 Turbo was known to be a bit of a handful, however it has since transformed into the one of the fastest GT cars you can buy. The Porsche 911 Turbo Service Guide specifically looks at the 997 and 991 generation cars.
Porsche has continued to stick with a twin-turbocharged flat six in their 911 Turbo range. They have been renowned for their reliability and their eagerness to handle more boost. They have been developing and refining this engine for decades, so it is no surprise that their engineering is top notch. As with any vehicle, regular maintenance is imperative in getting the most life out of it. The Porsche 911 Turbo Service Guide outlines the maintenance intervals, as well as when and what to expect when it goes for a major service.
Engine, Oil, Transmission, Clutch
The Porsche 911’s defining characteristic is its unique rear-mounted flat six cylinder engine. The 997 generation Turbo used a 3.6L version with 473 hp, while the mid-cycle refresh in 2009 came with an enlarged 3.8L version with 493 hp. The 991 generation was also using a 3.8L flat six with 513 hp and the midcycle refresh had a more powerful version of the same engine with 533 hp.
The Porsche 911 Turbo Service Guide recommends these maintenance intervals:
The 911 Turbo was offered with either a 6-speed manual or an automatic transmission, with Porsche fazing out the manual option in the 991 generation. The automatic was replaced with Porsche’s PDK double-clutch system in 2009. As is the nature of manual transmissions, clutch wear varies with driving habits. However, they usually last about 40,000 – 60,000 miles, with Porsche recommending a transmission fluid flush at every 120,000 miles. The PDK transmission is a sealed unit with a wet clutch pack and shouldn’t ever need to be changed. Though you must change the fluid every 60,000 miles.
Brakes, Rotors, Pads, Fluid
Porsche offered the 911 Turbo model with a choice of conventional steel brakes or PCCB carbon ceramic brakes. The PCCBs are much lighter than the steel brakes and help shed unsprung mass at every corner to wring out as much performance as possible. The steel brakes were 350 mm in size for the 997 Turbo and grew to 380 mm on the 991 generation. The PCCBs are bigger at 410 mm in the front and 390 mm in the rear.
Unless the vehicle is tracked, PCCB’s are meant to outlast steel rotors by a significant margin. They should generally last the lifetime of the vehicle under normal driving conditions. Steel brakes will wear out more often, though it depends on how the vehicle is driven. They should generally last about 30,000 – 50,000 miles. The Porsche 911 Service Guide recommends that the brakes are inspected at every maintenance interval to track the wear and only use DOT-4 rated brake fluid.
Tires, Suspension & Alignment
Porsche has always put a staggered tire size set-up on the 911. Due to the rear-biased weight distribution and power delivery, the Porsche 911 has always been equipped with a significantly larger rear tire size.
Original tire size specification are as follow:
GI Automotive carries a wide selection of road and track Porsche 911 tires on stock and available to order. A consultation is available to determine which tire is best for your individual driving needs.
Proper care and maintenance is particularly important for suspension systems, as they take the brunt of the abuse on the road. Pot holes, speed bumps, uneven surfaces, and debris will deteriorate the suspension systems over time and can take your tires out of alignment. The Porsche 911 Turbo Service Guide recommends inspecting the condition of the suspension system during each minor service, and replacing it when there is leakage from the shocks or play in the joints. Alignments should be done every time the wheels or tires are changed, or once a year.
There is a reason that the Porsche 911 has been considered the benchmark sports car for over 50 years.
The iconic shape and mechanical layout have earned a cult following. With proper maintenance, these vehicles have been proven to be very reliable.