Motor Authority Best Car To Buy 2020 nominee: Porsche 911
Not much has changed in more than six decades for Porsche. Then again, nearly everything has changed for the 911, too.
The looks of Porsche’s quintessential sports car have obviously evolved over time, but the power and handling have taken much larger strides forward. The 2020 Porsche 911 continues that upward trajectory.
Now in its eighth generation for 2020, the Porsche 911 has evolved into the perfect sports car. The 2020 model is available so far in base Carrera, all-wheel-drive Carrera 4, and more-powerful S and 4S models, in coupe, convertible, and Targa body styles. More are on the way.
The 2020 Porsche 911 is intstantly recognizable, despite being new for this year. But did it change enough to claim the top spot for Motor Authority’s Best Car To Buy 2020? (Nathan Leach-Proffer/For Motor Authority)
All 911s are now turbocharged and they all make more power than before. The base car makes 379 horsepower and 331 pound-feet of torque, while the S and 4S spin up 443 hp and 390 lb-ft of torque. Even the base car hits 60 in about four seconds, while the 4S drops that time to 3.2 seconds. Buyers have a choice between a quick-shifting 8-speed dual-clutch automatic or a 7-speed manual transmission.
Subtle but important changes make the 2020 911 the best yet. Larger wheels aid turn-in response, a wider rear track increases traction and lateral stability, a stiffer structure reacts more quickly to steering and suspension inputs, a quicker steering ratio means faster turn-in response, and new dampers improve both comfort and handling.
On the road and track, these changes translate to unflappable stability, incredible grip, agile moves, and ready power. The S and 4S models we’ve driven feel faster than their horsepower figures suggest. As for handling, the 911 may be too stable in turns; it requires an act of hooliganism to get the rear end to slide. It all inspires confidence and turns a good driver into a great driver.
We spy some hard plastics and ergonomic curiosities in the 2020 Porsche 911. Will that be enough to sink it among competitors for the top spot in Motor Authority’s Best Car To Buy 2020? (Nathan Leach-Proffer/For Motor Authority)
The story isn’t quite as positive inside. The new dashboard design evokes earlier 911s, but we spot some hard plastic and oddball cupholders that could be better executed. The dinky automatic transmission lever looks more like a toggle switch than a gearshift. What lies beneath it, however, is the best dual-clutch automatic on sale.
Will the 2020 Porsche 911’s unwavering stability and confidence-inspiring handling, no matter how incrementally changed, be enough to make it the Motor Authority Best Car to Buy 2020?
Check back with us Jan. 2 when we announce the winner of this year’s award. We’ll also announce the winners from our sister sites, The Car Connection and Green Car Reports. The Car Connection will also reveal the best vehicles in 15 categories to help you choose the best the cars, trucks, and SUVs for your needs. Finally, be sure to vote for our annual Driver’s Choice awards and tell us what you think is the best in every category.