Carrera: A Porsche 911 history
First introduced on the Porsche 356A Carrera in 1955, the Porsche’s ‘Carrera’ moniker makes reference to Zuffenhausen’s success in the 1953 Carrera Panamerica, Mexico’s answer to the Mille Miglia and Targa Florio road races.
After launching the Porsche 911 in 1963, it took a full decade before the flat six sports car was treated to the famous Carrera badge. However, when it did arrive, Stuttgart had created a legend: the Porsche 911 Carrera 2.7 RS.
The Carrera RS introduced Stuttgart fans to Rennsport variations of the Porsche 911 and proved so popular that for 1974, the range topping Porsche 911 was also christened with the Carrera badge.
Surviving at the top of tree through the 2.7-litre and 3.0-litre era, the Carrera was combined with the mid-range 911S in 1978 to form the 911 SC (the ‘Super Carrera’) in an effort to streamline the often confusing Porsche line-up.
The Carrera badge wasn’t out for long though. In 1984, the seven famous letters returned on the new 3.2-litre Porsche 911 Carrera. An icon of the Eighties, the 3.2 Carrera marked the beginning of an unbroken history for the motorsport-inspired moniker that still lasts to this day.
Having only ever been available on one model, the Porsche 964 generation saw the introduction of two 911 Carrera variations: a C2 and a C4, the latter utilising Zuffenhausen’s new four-wheel drive system.
The Carrera range was bolstered further with the introduction of the Porsche 993 when the both the 993 C2 and C4 gained a Carrera S variant. With it’s wide, Turbo-look body shell and strong naturally aspirated performance, the 993 Carrera S and Carrera 4S were a fitting send-off to the air-cooled era.
Porsche’s 996 generation only saw three Carrera models, with the ‘S’ variant only available on the Gen2 Carrera 4 platform. However, for the Porsche 997 generation, the 993 style was adopted with C2, C2S, C4 and C4S models all available.
Unlike the 993 though, the wide body was applied to the four-wheel drive Porsche 911s only, rather than the Carrera S model. This is a tradition that has carried through to the current Porsche 991 generation.
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