Ordering A Porsche 911 p. 3: Choosing The Options

by Lawrence Romanosky on February 26, 2014

Sport Chrono in Beige

Ordering a Porsche 911 becomes a little bit more involved when you have a look at the car configurator and start to choose all the options. Keeping in mind it is your car and you can build it any way you want, we at Porsche Centre Calgary can offer some suggestions. We tend to group the individual options into categories; Performance, Luxury, Appearance, Electronics and Personalization. Generally most builds are heavier in one or two of these categories, and lighter in the others as befits the customers use for the vehicle and personal style.

Some options naturally go together; for instance there are a host of suspension and performance options which include the Powerkit, Carbon Ceramic Brakes, Porsche Torque Vectoring, PDDC active anti-roll bars, Sport Exhaust, Sport Chrono, Sport Chassis etc. It makes sense to order several or sometimes all of these options together. It may make no sense at all to order only one on its own. There are packages which can be more cost effective than ordering options individually.

If you are never planning on taking your vehicle to the track, and consider that the stock drivetrain offers you a level of performance and handling that you are never even remotely likely to scratch the surface of, then the preceding options would likely be a waste of money.  You may however dive into some of the luxury items such Full Leather interior, 14-way or 18-way heated and ventilated adjustable seats, Bose or Burmester Hi Fi Sound Systems etc.

You could also personalize the interior, for which there are an almost infinite number of ways to make your Porsche unique. Leather covered air vents or painted? Contrast stitch? Leather covered fuse box cover, vent surrounds, seat belt surrounds, extended dashboard leather and rear center console are but some of the options. Different colour seat belts, gauges, interior trim to match the body colour or an alternate colour all are possible through Porsche Exclusive.

Consider that just about every piece on the inside of your 911 can be covered in leather, and stitched in a contrast colour. Those parts which can’t be covered in leather can probably be specially painted. The few parts that can’t be either painted or covered in leather can probably be substituted for something more unique and expensive.

You will pay handsomely for this of course and please bear in mind that Porsche will build whatever you send them; you won’t receive the benefit of a polite letter back saying,  “you’re sure you want to do that?” Also, if you over-indulge in a particularly eclectic build you should probably plan on keeping the car for a while as it may take some time to find somebody else who fully appreciates your choices and wants to buy your car. It is worth mentioning that even the most elaborate Porsche builds will come in much less than other hand-built sports cars – anybody who has had a look at a certain Italian Sports Car option prices will consider Porsche prices almost free.

Visually each 911 can look substantially different from one another depending on the exterior options. Wheels certainly make a big impact, and there are a multitude of choices in 19” and 20” diameters. There are 2 alternate Aero kits for the non-Turbo/GT3 variants. The Sport Design Package adds a more aggressive front apron, and the famous ‘ducktail’ spoiler reminiscent of the fabled 1973 Carrera RS. The Aerokit Cup builds on this package by adding an additional rear wing and more aggressive front spoiler. Additionally, there are numerous external trim items such as the air intakes, front and rear diffusers, lower mirrors etc. that are coated in a durable flat black material – these pieces can all be painted body colour.

In the category of bell and whistles there are a host of electronic options that can be ordered.  Full LED lighting, Adaptive Cruise Control, Bose and Burmester Hi Fi Sound Systems, Ultrasonic Parking Sensors, rear wiper, Rear view cameras (on the 911 Turbo), Satellite Radio, On-Line Services etc.

Porsche will also build you a highly personalized car using the Paint to Sample and Leather to Sample programs. You may wish to paint your 911 in a period colour from another era such as Signal Green or Mexico Blue from the 1970’s. Or, come up with your own leather sample, perhaps to match one of your vintage cars, and have Porsche match it. Just about anything is possible, though Porsche will conduct a ‘feasibility study’ in certain instances to make sure that the result will meet Porsche quality standards. This of course takes more time and is admittedly expensive.

If you check enough boxes, you can double the purchase price of the car.   This means that the idea of a ‘fully loaded’ Porsche is something of a myth – most people draw the line somewhere and even for a ‘cost no object’ customer, not every option may be appropriate.  Most buyers set a ‘theme’ for the car which is based on their own use, sensibilities and budget.  This could be a Performance theme, Luxury GT or a car which has a unique ‘Street Presence’.

For instance, somebody who is very performance oriented may add some of the powertrain options, the Powerkit, aggressive AeroKit Cup, 20” wheels, Sport Exhaust and Ceramic Brakes, but keep the interior relatively purposeful. Another person may keep the drivetrain and external appearance stock, but add the full leather interior and 14 way Seats, Active Cruise Control and the Burmester Sound upgrade. Somebody else may just want the car, and choose almost no options. These days just about everybody chooses the PDK transmission, though Porsche is unique in still making the conventional manual transmission available to purists.

There are generally things that all the cars should have i.e. PDK, Heated Seats and one of the two Sunroof options – omitting some basics may make the car hard to sell. There are also situations where certain builds require a certain group of options to ‘make sense’ i.e. the Sport Chrono Package should probably be ordered for all the more sporting 911 builds. Also you generally wouldn’t put a very expensive option in an otherwise plain car i.e. a $6,800 Aerokit Cup external body kit on a base Carrera with 19”wheels would look incomplete to many.

This is where we, the dealership, can provide some expertise. At Porsche Centre Calgary we have a history of ordering high-spec cars that dive deep into the Porsche Option list. We have been somewhat brave in an effort to explore all the different expressions of a Porsche 911, and have photo and video documented many of these cars for future reference. We have pushed the boundaries ordering very high MSRP vehicles for stock in an effort to better understand what the seldom-ordered options look like – putting us in a better position to advise our customers.

We want to make each 911 a special car, and work with the buyer to create a build that is a unique expression of their personality.  Finally we can say unequivocally that the customers who invest the time ordering a Factory Built 911 are extremely pleased at what they created and become excellent ambassadors for our brand.

Don’t miss part 1 and 2 of this Porsche 911 ordering series, Which is Best for You? and Allocations & Production.

Lawrence Romanosky

Sales Manager

Porsche Centre Calgary

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