Reviews of the Type 991 Porsche 911 GT3 are always going to come down to one thing: the transmission. That because the GT3 isn’t offered with a manual transmission anymore, and the purists have been predictably outraged about it. So the fact that XCar titled its GT3 review “Don’t Sweat The Gearbox” shouldn’t come as much of a surprise. To the reviewer’s credit, he manages to cover some other parts of the car first, and though the transmission is the most important part of the review, it’s not the only part.

The closest that a street legal 911 comes to being a race car is the GT3 RS, but the non-RS GT3 isn’t far behind, and as the reviewer points out here, even the “regular” mode for the suspension is what most would consider sport mode. This is one of the big reasons for the PDK instead of a three-pedal manual, it simply shifts faster than a human can; and if you’re really serious about a no-compromises approach to performance, then you have to go with the fastest option. The other big reason for the PDK is that people weren’t buying manuals, simple as that.

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Porsche 911 GT3

2014 Porsche 911 GT3 High Resolution Exterior
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The Porsche 911, particularly in its more stripped-down forms like the GT3, is still one of the best driver’s cars out there. It offers a real feel of connectedness which other cars can’t ever quite seem to duplicate, and while internet forums (and the comment section for this video on YouTube) are filled with people complaining in all caps about the death of the manual transmission, the people who actually buy these cars don’t seem to mind.

Being a Porsche fan is a bit different from being a fan of any other carmaker. The 911 made a name for itself as a car which was very difficult to drive, but which was extremely rewarding for the most talented of drivers. Being able to drive a 911 carried an elite status, and hardcore fans (and I’m saying this as one myself) felt that status being eroded whenever Porsche even talks about doing anything that will make the car easier to drive. Porsche has surely thought long and hard about this decision, and made it as a result of cold hard data that supports higher profit margins, but it is still a painful thing for many of us to see.

Jacob Joseph
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