Some of our favorite Porsches over the past few years have been GTS models, and we’re happy to see the variant reappear on schedule for the newest 991.2 version of the 911. Like the rest of the current 911 lineup (other than the sold-out GT3 RS and 911 R), the 2017 911 GTS is now powered by a turbocharged flat-six engine, and it benefits from the same sort of styling tweaks and performance upgrades that are synonymous with the GTS treatment. You won’t be surprised to hear that both rear- and all-wheel-drive coupe and convertible versions will be offered along with a Targa 4 GTS, bringing the total number of 911 variants (as of this writing) to a whopping 19.
Porsche ensures that the 911 GTS won’t be mistaken for another model with a sporty exterior makeover—although frankly, only the keenest Porschephiles will be able to tell a new GTS from a 991.1 GTS. Nonetheless, all GTS models use the wider Carrera 4 body and come standard with 20-inch black wheels and a black finish on various bits of trim including the badges, the front lip spoiler, and the exhaust pipes. The head- and taillights are tinted slightly darker, and there’s a new trim piece that stretches between the taillights that is either lit itself (on AWD models) or rendered in black (on RWD models). Even the Targa’s distinctive roll bar is finished in—you guessed it—black.
Thanks primarily to larger turbochargers, the GTS’s twin-turbo 3.0-liter six-cylinder squeezes out 30 more horsepower than the Carrera S’s version of the engine, for a total of 450 horsepower. Torque is up by 37 lb-ft to a total of 405. For those who may still doubt the efficacy of turbos, that’s 80 lb-ft more than the naturally aspirated 991.1 GTS, and it’s available as low as 2150 rpm. A seven-speed manual transmission is standard on all versions of the GTS, with a seven-speed dual-clutch PDK automatic optional. According to Porsche, the all-wheel-drive 911 GTS coupe with the PDK is the quickest of the bunch, although the company’s quoted zero-to-60-mph time of 3.4 seconds seems conservative given that we got a 370-hp base Carrera PDK to 60 mph in that same amount of time.
The coupe also seems poised to be the best-handling version of the three GTS body styles, as it comes standard with a PASM Sport suspension (an $890 option on the Carrera S) that sits 0.4 inch lower than the standard PASM system that’s standard on the convertible and Targa versions. Other desirable pieces of equipment fitted to all GTS models include sport seats, the Sport Chrono package, and the sport exhaust system—extras that would cost $440, $2085, and $2950 on a Carrera S coupe.
Given that the 911 GTS starts only $15,600 higher than the less powerful and less well equipped Carrera S, then, it could almost be considered a bargain, even though it costs $120,050 to start. The convertible is $12,300 dearer, while adding all-wheel drive to either model costs $6900. The 911 Targa GTS, like all other Targa models, is offered only with all-wheel drive and Carrera 4 nomenclature, and it has the costliest base price at $139,250. Of course, you’ll pay nearly $20,000 more to reach the next rung on the 911 ladder, the Turbo coupe, so the latest GTS—which is set to reach U.S. dealers in April—seems poised to uphold its position as the sweetest among the 911’s many sweet spots.