Performance Car of the Year 2015: Porsche 911 GTS
The Porsche 911 GTS is the 2015 Auto Express Performance Car of the Year, with the McLaren 650S and Mercedes-AMG GT commended
More than 50 years of development have gone into making the current-generation 911 one of the best sports cars around. And as if the regular coupé wasn’t good enough, Porsche’s GTS enhancements help push it towards truly iconic status.
A 3.8-litre flat-six – rear-mounted, the 911’s defining characteristic – pumps out 424bhp and a spine-tingling soundtrack. With the optional PDK dual-clutch box and launch control, you’ll cover 0-62mph in only 4.0 seconds, making this car nearly as rapid off the line as the previous-generation, race-bred GT3.
It’s sharp to drive, too. The front end is ultra-pointy and the electric power-steering delivers just the right feedback so that you can place the GTS with pinpoint accuracy. That extra weight over the rear axle helps boost agility into corners and traction on the way out.
This isn’t only a hardcore track car, though. Adaptive dampers and active exhaust mean you can soften its edges for cruising. It’s perfectly comfortable on the motorway and, for a 2+2 performance coupé packing this much power, relatively efficient, returning 32.5mpg.
There’s just enough menace to the styling to differentiate the GTS from lesser rungs of the 911 ladder, with a front splitter, bigger rear bumper, black sill extensions and huge 20-inch racing-style centre-lock wheels. In every respect this is the sweet spot of the 911 range, and one of the best Porsches ever.
911 Carrera GTS PDK (£94,610)
The four-wheel-drive version of Porsche’s performance coupé has even more traction, but the rear-wheel-drive GTS already boasts the balance of a gymnast. It’s sensational from behind the wheel, and the PDK transmission suits the car’s split personality perfectly.
Last year’s winner is knocked off the top spot, but its performance is no less ferocious, its styling no less outlandish and its chassis’ ability to lap at maximum attack no less jaw-dropping. Trick tech such as adaptive dampers and active roll control mean it’s a great road car, too, with all the theatre you’d expect from an F1 manufacturer.
Offering SLS performance at around two-thirds of the price, the AMG GT is a triumph. The new 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8 engine thumps hard – especially in 503bhp S trim – and has a gorgeously guttural roar. The GT has the looks to match, too, and huge grip – but its handling is sharper than that of any AMG model before.
Auto Express New Car Awards 2015
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- 1IntroductionThe winners of the 2015 Auto Express New Car Awards have been announced
- 2Car of the Year 201512 years since the first generation model took the crown, the new Volvo XC90 is the 2015 Auto Express Car of the Year
- 3City car of the year 2015The Skoda Citigo is the 2015 Auto Express City Car of the Year, with the Hyundai i10 and Renault Twingo commended
- 4Supermini of the Year 2015The Volkswagen Polo is the 2015 Auto Express Supermini of the Year, with the Mazda 2 and Skoda Fabia commended
- 5Premium small Car of the Year 2015The Mini Cooper is the 2015 Auto Express Premium Small Car of the Year, with the Audi A1 and Citroen DS3 commended
- 6Compact family Car of the Year 2015The SEAT Leon is the 2015 Auto Express Compact Family Car of the Year, with the MINI 5dr and Skoda Octavia commended
- 7Family Car of the Year 2015The Skoda Superb is the 2015 Auto Express Family Car of the Year, with the Mazda 6 and Volkswagen Passat commended
- 8Estate Car of the Year 2015The Volkswagen Passat Estate is the 2015 Auto Express Estate Car of the Year, with the SEAT Leon ST and Skoda Octavia Estate commended
- 9MPV of the Year 2015The Citroen Grand C4 Picasso is the 2015 Auto Express MPV of the Year, with the BMW 2 Series Active Tourer and SEAT Alhambra commended
- 10Crossover of the Year 2015The Nissan Qashqai is the 2015 Auto Express Crossover of the Year, with the Citroen C4 Cactus and Mazda CX-3 commended