Porsche's latest 911 Cabriolet is nearly as quick and nimble as its coupe version while oozing open-top pizzazz
Stirred, not shaken: Porsche's 8th-generation 911 The Porsche 911 Carrera S Cabriolet has a retuned 3-litre flat-six twin-turbo engine developing 450hp and 530Nm of torque. PHOTO: LIONEL SEAH

The coupe version of Porsche's eighth-generation 911 was unveiled in November last year, followed last week by the Cabriolet.

Like its predecessors, the latest Cabriolet is an evolution rather than a revolution. Cutting an inimitable 911 silhouette, it is slightly bigger and looks more athletic.

The wheelbase remains unchanged at 2,450mm, although the tracks have now been grown. It gets 20-inch wheels in front and 21-inch in the rear - with correspondingly pronounced fenders to match.

Other tweaks include all-round LED lights, revised bumper vents and flush door handles. The tailpipes are now at the lower part of the bumper, and not beneath it.

The car gains 55kg to weigh in at 1,585kg, but its performance has not been blunted. Its century sprint of 3.7 seconds is merely 0.2 seconds behind that of the Coupe and 0.4 seconds quicker than the last Carrera S Cabriolet.

Credit goes to a retuned 3-litre flat-six twin-turbo developing 450hp (30hp more) and 530Nm (30Nm more) of torque. It is paired with an eight-speed dual-clutch gearbox (previously seven).

Body rigidity has improved by 10 per cent. Unlike most open-tops, there is no detectable body flex or scuttle shake when the car goes over the many broken surfaces here. Yet, ride comfort is at the level of a grand tourer.

Show it a winding stretch and the car will oblige with pin-sharp handling. Contributing to this are rear-axle steering (optional) and a more responsive electric steering system.

In Sport mode, the car's sport exhaust (also optional) amplifies its turbo whooshes and flat-six wails, followed by a pop-and-crackle chorus when you lift off. Inversely, undesirable noises are kept out. Tyre rumble is well muted. And a button raises a mesh deflector which minimises wind blustering.

The redesigned cabin gets cleaner lines with more flush surfaces and fewer buttons. The dash now incorporates a 10.9-inch infotainment touchscreen alongside a digital cockpit, save for a central analogue tachometer.

The car comes with a Wet Mode for a safer drive during rainy conditions. And it is now keyless, with a start-stop twist-action switch.

Interestingly, a shaver-like transmission toggle replaces the classic gear-shifter.

Although stated as a 2+2 seater, the Cabrio is more of a two-squash-two as the rear seats are only suitable for small children, or contortionists. It is best to use the rear for your carry-ons instead, since its 132-litre front stowage is sufficient for a couple of duffle bags but not much else.

Space constraints aside, little else is compromised in this cabriolet. It is faster and more agile in true sports car form, yet more GT-like in its refinement and comfort.

If James Bond prefers his martini shaken, not stirred, the new 911 Carrera Cabriolet will have you stirred, not shaken.