The six most popular Porsche 911s of all time

When it comes to high value Porsche 911s, rarity is a key factor, whether they are revered Rennsports, factory-built models or limited edition Exclusives.

However, the Porsche 911’s place as the most famous sports car in the world isn’t purely built on rarity, quite the opposite. Its popularity has been key in its success.

These six Porsche 911s have proved Zuffenhausen’s greatest sales successes over the last 52 years, with stratospheric numbers rolling out of Werks II. These are, definitively, the most popular neunelfers* ever:

6) Porsche 997 Carrera 4S – 30,973 produced
997 Carrera 4S

After the divisive styling of the 996, the Porsche 997 recaptured the imagination of 911 fans. Unlike previous generations, the Carrera 4S was a regular part of the line-up and, therefore, proved incredibly popular thanks to its mix of pace and practicality.

5) Porsche 993 Carrera – 38,626 produced
993 Carrera

The last days of air-cooling certainly didn’t see luftgekühlt popularity dwindle. The 993 Carrera proved more popular than the 964 C2 and C4 put together. No wonder many think that this is the greatest generation of neunelfer ever.

4) Porsche 997 Carrera S – 41,059 produced
997 Carrera S

Along with the C4S version (see number six), the Porsche 997 Carrera S helped to make the 997 generation the most popular 911 generation yet. The traditional rear-wheel drive setup captured enthusiasts while the mainstream return of the ‘S’ badge helped its appeal.

3) Porsche 996 Carrera – 56,733 produced
996 Carrera

Disliked by some for its ‘fried egg’ headlamps, parts sharing with the Boxster and switch to a water-cooled flat six, over 50,000 Porsche 996 Carreras rolled out of Zuffenhausen, saving Porsche from bankruptcy in the late Nineties.

2) Porsche 911 SC – 60,740 produced
911 SC

When Zuffenhausen released the Porsche 911 SC in 1978, it took the decision to streamline the 911 line-up from ‘911’, ‘911S’ and ‘911 Carrera’ variants into a single model: the SC. Thanks to this decision (and a five-year lifetime) the SC is one of Porsche’s biggest sales successes.

1) Porsche 911 Carrera 3.2 – 70,044 produced
3.2 Carrera

Coming after a period of instability, the Porsche 911 Carrera 3.2 was born out of a necessity to keep the 911 alive. That its launch coincided with a global economic boom certainly didn’t harm sales figures either. Thanks to its proliferation between 1984 and 1989, it has become an enduring icon of the Eighties.

Which is your favourite popular Porsche 911? Join the debate in the comments below or head to our Facebook and Twitter pages now.

*Production numbers include Coupe, Cabriolet and Targa figures. The 991 has not been counted as it is still in production.

Comments (1)

  • Geoff Edwards

    Might as well start the boasting. I have a totally factory original 1986 Carrera 3.2. Owned it for last 15 years, just had the engine rebuilt after a previous P-mechanic totally messed it up (story available). Been everywhere, including across the Nullabor from Adelaide to Perth. Just starting to do a bit of cosmetic resto to bring her back to as-new, ‘cept the odometer showing 240,000kms.