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997.1 a keeper!

 
Old 07-13-2013, 07:52 PM
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alexb76
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Default 997.1 a keeper!

Some might have followed my posts about my car getting to CPO expiry and some questions I had around my options. I did a lot of research, test drove a few different cars, and did some financial analysis and basically by far the best option all around is to keep the car! Here are some findings that may help others in the same boat.

Performance
Performance or relevant performance between 911 gens was by far my biggest question. I test drove both 997.2 and 991, and took a .2 C4S around Nurburgring 2 years ago. The performance difference is there, specially if you get to GTS HP. BUT, it really isn't that much, and on a track, driver (me) is still the bottleneck and upgrading really wouldn't buy me too much.

So, overall, the car is fast and 90-95% of 997.2 and 991, and in some ways more enjoyable.

Reliability and Maintenance
This was my #2 question, concern. I did a lot of research, talked to various service advisors, race shops, online research, and then had the car inspected. Basically, 997.1 post 2006 is an absolutely reliable car, above and beyond any typical 6-7yr sports car from any brand. This was consensus by four Porsche service managers from BC, WA, OR, the head mechanic of all of Canada, and my own race shop guy who builds Cup cars. These cars are absolutely bullet proof. Yes, IMS design was flawed to begin with, and pre-2005 might have issues (while there are solutions for), but even old IMS has been on thousands of cars rolled out by Porsche (996, Boxster, Cayman), and statistically the issues are rare. 2006+ engines on our cars are the best iteration, and have not had any major issues what so ever. Is there a minute chance of some major failure, sure, but the chances of that are a lot lower than me getting into a fatal car accident tomorrow.

I was suspecting a bit of RMS leak, but after inspection at three shops (two Porsche dealers), they all said it's absolutely normal, and when/if it happens it's a relatively easy repair and can refresh clutch at the same time.

So, overall reliability and maintenance is definitely NOT a concern/issue on this car.

Age, looks, electronics, comfort features
This is a bit more subjective I guess, and may weigh more or less for some. For me, this is where things are a bit hard to judge. I had a few cars lined up, 991 looks freshest for sure, BUT in some ways it doesn't look as good. 997.2 front-end with its very nicely laid out LED fronts look the best to me. I got Dectane rear LED which looks identical to 997.2, and for front-end either can change the DRL lights, or (my plan), change to GTS front-end at some point...

Electronics are best on 991, but 997.2 doesn't lack here at all, 997.1 weakest. To me, the biggest issue is a better BT system (I got mObridge), and a much better iPad/mp3 navigation.

For comfort features, there's no diff between .2 and .1, and 991 is obviously quieter (inside), and more comfortable, but then again that could be a negative for some.

So, overall, 997.1 is looking a bit aged, and lacking in electronics, BUT, with some minor upgrades it can be easily refreshed and IMO, with the right wheels, and some good detailing the car looks just as amazing as it ever did. I STILL turn around in appreciation when it's washed and detailed and it specially looks amazing at night under light. Gotto live with the electronics though, I am still not fond of aftermarket.

Financials
Ok, here's where the decision was made and final. A new 991 C4S, with the options I liked was costing anywhere between 125-135K! Like seriously? This is absolutely ridiculous! That is somewhere around 200% of my what my car is worth, and 991 is NOT 200% better (more like 10-20%). 997.2 is a much more reasonable upgrade financially, but it still not as significant of an upgrade unless you get into GT3 or maybe GTS.

I really think Porsche has made a mistake with pricing on 991, base prices might not have changed much, but the option prices are ridiculous. I strongly believe if I wanted a new Porsche, Boxster/Cayman provide a much better value proposition, and to many they even look better, more exotic.

Decision
Car is gonna be a keeper. I may or may not buy an extended warranty. I will budget a couple of thousand for some upgrades over the next year and will just enjoy this amazing car. I think Porsche basically made such an amazing car that it's very hard to improve from gen to gen. and laws of diminishing returns are in play now.

Potential Upgrade?
The only logical upgrade from 997.1 Carrera, is either GT3 or TT. In 1-2yrs that might be something I'd do.

For all of 997 owners, congrats on your car, get out and drive it, and don't worry about marketing and all the new toy features marketed at you. This car is fantastic as-is and better than 99% of all cars on the road! I am for sure a proud owner. Cheers!
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Old 07-13-2013, 07:55 PM
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Edgy01
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There are many out there who just have to have the latest. Even the lowly 997.1 is vastly better than 95% of the other NEW cars out there.
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Old 07-13-2013, 07:58 PM
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alexb76
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Originally Posted by Edgy01 View Post
There are many out there who just have to have the latest. Even the lowly 997.1 is vastly better than 95% of the other NEW cars out there.
Absolutely, more like 99% if you count all cars on the road! 1st world problems, eh?
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Old 07-13-2013, 08:05 PM
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Great write up!

+1 on almost all points.

My car is 7+ years old now and I made the decision last year that I intend to keep my car at least another 4-5 years. It had been bone stock its whole life, but since last year I've made various upgrades, as I intend to enjoy my car for many more years to come.

When it's time to let her go, if that ever happens, my candidates would be 997.2 GT3 or GTS or a nicely depreciated 991 S. Or even more likely, I may add an old school air cooled 911, e.g. 993 or 964 RS America or late '80s 911.

Bottom line, completely concur, the 997.1 is a keeper!

Last edited by Mspeedster; 07-14-2013 at 12:49 AM.
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Old 07-13-2013, 08:08 PM
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Don't park your car for two months and there will be no RMS issues. IMS issues are so rare, I don't ever think about it until I log in to these forums. I parked pretty close to a 991 today and the 991 looks big. The 997 is already somewhat big. The 991 is slightly newer looking but the different is hardly noticable. If you are not a Porsche enthusiast, you would not know the difference. The 991 is not faster than my car so I don't feel the need to change anytime soon. It bothers me that I can't tell the difference between most of the models now when I am inside, they all looks the same.

The cayman and boxster looks more exotic and is the perfect size for a sports car. That will most likely be my next Porsche.
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Old 07-13-2013, 08:10 PM
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For me (dont track) the PDK with SC+ was the deal breaker..as opposed to 997.1. If you like MT or Tiptronic, no need to go to 997.2
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Old 07-13-2013, 09:28 PM
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+1... Good overview. I like my MT but if my back gives out down the road then I can see switching from my .1S to a GTS with PDK. On paper I've been tempted by the GT3 for the high reving engine but I suspect that a test drive will either rune me financially or turn me off from the harder street ride. For now I'm content with mods on the .1S to keep me going.
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Old 07-13-2013, 09:46 PM
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Great points by everybody. These cars never age, they are just like an aged whiskey, get better as time passes. The trick is to keep up with the maintenance and you should have an awesome car for long time!
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Old 07-13-2013, 10:15 PM
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I came to the same conclusion a few months ago. I kept thinking about upgrading to a .2 but when I did the math, the numbers just didn't make sense. Even if I had an IMS failure, I could buy a new engine for less than it would cost me to get into a .2 at this point.

A Gt3 sounds appealing but I still use the 997 as a weekend family car with my wife and two kids. In fact, we just did a 750 mile trip last week up highway one along the coast and back.
Once they don't fit back there then maybe a gt3 will make sense.

Plus, I love my car.
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Old 07-13-2013, 10:25 PM
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Great summary, thanks.

I agree on the whole by far, and I like to emphasize that of course I fully grant that the newer models are a little faster (obviously Porsche does improve performance for each new car). But the difference in performance relative to value from the angle of a current 997.1 owner is a no brainer for me.

Plus, I'm the original owner and know the car's history and I have a keeper. Going on my 7th year of ownership and I'll probably end up owning it 8,9, or 10 years.

Not to spoil the Porsche love in the thread but some of the very same points made above by others are some of the reasons why I'm going to be seriously shopping other cars next time around. The prices now, especially with realistic "must have" options, are not looking good relative to what I see elsewhere.
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Old 07-13-2013, 10:38 PM
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Originally Posted by yemenmocha View Post
Not to spoil the Porsche love in the thread but some of the very same points made above by others are some of the reasons why I'm going to be seriously shopping other cars next time around. The prices now, especially with realistic "must have" options, are not looking good relative to what I see elsewhere.
I agree. 10 years ago, Porsche was one of the very few car companies who could deliver a sports car that could be driven daily. Now, there are quite a few competent alternatives and their pricing is just ridiculous now.
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Old 07-13-2013, 10:50 PM
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I agree price on 991 cars is absurd. I priced out 991 gt3, stopped at $145k. I cannot commit that much money into a damn car, sorry. some folks probably can, but, good for them.

I still do not exclude a chance to upgrade into 997.2 GTS may be, just for the sake of its motor but realistically to rebuild my m96 by flat6 costs $24k and it is currently cheaper than to commit into GTS car.

I am trying to decide what to do with motor, it is true it is cheaper to rebuild m96 motor than to buy GTS only question is whose service to choose.
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Old 07-13-2013, 11:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Hella-Buggin' View Post
I came to the same conclusion a few months ago. I kept thinking about upgrading to a .2 but when I did the math, the numbers just didn't make sense. Even if I had an IMS failure, I could buy a new engine for less than it would cost me to get into a .2 at this point.
Seems to me spending $25 grand putting a new engine into my '05 would make less economic sense than putting the same money into upgrading to a .2. And that new .1 engine would still have an IMS. But insasmuch as I spent to put the LN bearing in it, and spent on a B2B warranty to 2017, I too am keeping my .1.

Originally Posted by utkinpol View Post
I agree price on 991 cars is absurd. I priced out 991 gt3, stopped at $145k. I cannot commit that much money into a damn car, sorry. some folks probably can, but, good for them.
+1 to that. In 4 years a used 991 might be at a price-point I can live with.
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Old 07-13-2013, 11:13 PM
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I've come to the same conclusion. $130k for a new 991 C2S seems insane. Turbo's reaching $200k. I'm thinking of adding a new m3 or C63 to go along with my 07C2S.
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Old 07-14-2013, 01:26 AM
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Great write up Alex. 1+
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