Official: Porsche Reveals 2012 911 Carrera Ahead of Frankfurt

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It's official: Porsche releases full details and more photos of their seventh-generation 911 Carrera and Carrera S.

48 years is a long time for many things to be around, especially a sports car. But Porsche has taken the fine wine approach: everything gets better with age. Just last week some photos leaked showing the new 2012 911 sans camouflage, but now Porsche has unveiled even more photos and official details just weeks ahead of the car's debut at the 2011 Frankfurt Auto Show. The completely redesigned seventh-generation Porsche 911 Carrera is finally here in all of its decades-long glory.

It unmistakably looks like a 911, but then again, there are some noticeable differences. The new car's wheelbase has been stretched by 3.9 inches and the height has also been lowered in order to create a sleeker silhouette. The side mirrors are also now mounted on the upper edge of the doors. But still, the unmistakable trademark wide-arched fenders remain along with the traditional rear-engine layout. The base Carrera is powered by a 3.4-liter flat six with 350hp and the Carrera S is treated to a 3.8-liter unit with 400hp (15 more horsepower than before).

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Each is mated to either a seven-speed PDK dual-clutch gearbox or a seven-speed manual transmission. Performance is also stellar, with a PDK-equipped Carrera S going from 0 to 60 mph in 4.1 seconds and the base Carrera doing it in 4.4 seconds. Top speed for the 911 Carrera S and Carrera is 188 mph and 179 mph, respectively. According to Porsche's official press release, the new 911 "offers both better longitudinal dynamics and unprecedented top performance in terms of transverse dynamics." The longer wheelbase contributes to "greater agility, precision, and driving stability."

It's also more fuel efficient than before with features like stop-start technology, the groundbreaking seven-speed manual and PDK. For example, the 3.8-liter boxer engine with the optional PDK is not only more powerful than its predecessor; it also has a fuel consumption decrease of 14 percent. The interior is also a huge improvement with it taking many luxury cues and styling from the Panamera. Set to go on sale in the U.S. beginning in February 2012, pricing begins at $82,100 for the Carrera and $96,400 for the Carrera S (not including destination charges).

Could this be the best performing 911 ever? Will its updated/old styling wow the crowds while still managing to satisfy the faithful? More details are coming up soon from the Frankfurt Auto Show in just a few weeks.

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