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08 June 2020
PORSCHE 911 TARGA: special Heritage Edition harks back to the ‘50s

Retro-themed 911 to be the first of four Heritage Design Edition models that celebrate iconic Porsches from decades past

STUTTGART, GERMANY – As the makers of the 911, the world’s second-longest running sports car name (the first being the Chevrolet Corvette), Porsche has plenty of material in its back catalogue with which to draw inspiration from for its products. This is something it does frequently, and dare we say it, rather adeptly.

This has manifested in numerous special edition cars over the years, the latest being this, the 911 Targa 4S Heritage Design Edition. Limited to 992 units worldwide (the internal model code for this generation of 911), the Heritage Edition is the work of Porsche Exclusive Manufaktur, the arm of the company that handles custom work – anything from personalised paint colours or interiors, to bespoke body alterations.

Sweet as cherry pie

The theme for this car is the 1950s, and the racing successes in those early days that played a pivotal role in establishing Porsche’s reputation and popularity.

The Porsche 356 was in production from 1950 to 1965

According to Porsche, in those days dark red was a “very popular colour”, with the official company literature of the time – such as owners’ manuals – being produced in dark red and white. Hence the defining element of this car being its exclusive Cherry Metallic paint job (black, red, silver, or pastel grey can also be had if you’re boring).

On top of that goes a white motorsports-inspired livery based on the simple designs of that pre-sponsor logo era, with an optional customer-selected racing number on the doors. 

Rounding out the exterior changes are gold badging (just like on Porsche 356s and early 911s), a Heritage emblem on the engine lid (evoking a badge that was awarded to cars that had reached the 100,000km milestone), and on the bonnet and wheel caps, a backdate of the Porsche crest to the 1963 version (the year the 911 was introduced).

Aged like a fine wine

Continuing the red-white theme is the interior, which is slathered in Bordeaux Red and Atacama Beige leather (a black/beige combo is also available).

It’s not just vintage colour schemes making a comeback, but materials too; the seat centres and door panels are made of corduroy, a ridged, wool-like fabric that was used in the 356 for its ventilation and anti-slip properties.

Our favourite interior element though, is the green-lit instrument dials, which are modeled with the same graphics style as – you guessed it – the 356 (below).

Additionally, the 1963 Porsche crest appears on the steering wheel, headrests and key fob, the “Exclusive Manufaktur” logo is embossed into the central armrest, and there’s a numbered plaque over on the dashboard’s passenger side that denotes the car’s edition number. 

Targa-tastic

The Heritage Edition is mechanically identical to the standard 911 Targa 4S, which means it’s powered by a twin-turbo 3.0-litre flat-six engine, sending its 450hp and 530Nm of torque to the road via all four wheels. That’s enough for a top speed of 304km/h, hitting 100km/h in just 3.4 seconds along the way.

Features that are new to this generation of 911 include an eight-speed dual-clutch gearbox, adaptive cruise control that can stop and go in traffic jams, an infrared night vision assist, as well as a Wet Mode in the traction control that adjusts the car’s electronics to lower the risk of aquaplaning.

As for the “Targa” part of the car, it’s a body style that’s a middle ground between a fixed-roof Coupe and a fully openable Cabriolet, where the roof’s middle section opens up, leaving a distinctive roll hoop and wraparound rear windscreen. It was created as a response to concerns in the ‘60s that full open-top cars would be outlawed in the US due to insufficient rollover protection, hence the stout roll hoop.

A pretty penny

If you like what you’re seeing and decide you need some overt Porsche heritage in your life, you can still put your name down for one (according to the Porsche Singapore website at press time). Deep pockets will be needed though – it’ll cost you S$813,888 without Certificate of Entitlement, an eye-watering S$164k over a standard Targa 4S. If that’s a bit much, Porsche says it will release some of the Heritage Edition’s accessories as individual options in time to come.

And if the Fab ‘50s isn’t quite your style, there will be more to look forward to. The 911 Targa 4S Heritage Edition is only the first of four such special models that Porsche will release over the next few years, paying tribute to the ‘60s, ‘70s, and ‘80s as well. Personally, we’re most excited about the last one, as ‘80s excess gave birth to some of the most outlandish and memorable Porsches ever. What about you?