IT MAY SEEM LIKE THIS IS THE AGE OF TALL AUTOMOBILES BUT SPORTS CARS ARE STILL AROUND, AND THERE ARE EXCLUSIVE MODELS FOR THOSE WHO BELIEVE THAT STAYING CLOSER TO THE GROUND MEANS BEING ONE WITH THE WORLD.
Almost all automobile manufacturers have turned their attention to SUVs, crossovers and terrain vehicles. There’s a good reason behind this choice since vehicles with high driving seating positions increase the sense of safety in traffic; thus consumers prefer these glamorous, safe and convenient models. However, some don’t need to sit high to look great. For them, sports cars continue to offer an alternative.
Sports automobiles have certain categories of their own, but we will focus on luxury sports cars, i.e. those that are not content with being fast. The target customers of these models care more about their privileged status, attention to detail and brand value than how fast they can corner. In light of these criteria, we have chosen three models: Maserati GranTurismo and GranCabrio, Mercedes S Series Coupe and Convertible, and Porsche 911 Coupe and Cabrio.
Maserati GranTurismo and GranCabrio
You can tell an Italian car’s exquisite style from a distance. Doing justice to its heritage, Maserati may be regarded as Ferrari’s less assertive cousin but the fact that its logo is Poseidon’s trident tells a lot about the brand’s mission. Just like Poseidon, Maserati models are furious and cannot make do with less. Designed by Pininfarina, these automobiles resemble a strong wave even when they’re not moving. The interior design bears witness to why Italians are style icons: high-quality leather with meticulous sewing, aluminum pieces that seem to have been forged with a tiny hammer, and inscriptions that must have been designed by a master calligrapher.
Power capacity completes this wonderful picture. V8 cylinder 4.2-liter and 4.7-liter engines work hard not to stay behind. Generating a 405 HP power and 460 Nm torque even during the initial phase, the engine has a maximum speed of 285 km/h and can go from 0 to 100 km/h in 5.2 seconds. If you’re looking for more, the brand offers the Sport, The MC Stradale and MC Stradale Centennial Edition. MC Stradale and MC Stradale Centennial Edition versions have an engine power of 460 HP and 520 Nm torque. With a maximum speed of 308 km/h, the models can go from 0 to 100 km/h in 4.5 seconds. The moment you level the gas pedal with the velour floor, you can imagine yourself as Poseidon lifting his trident.
Mercedes S Series Coupe and Cabriolet
The S Series has always been the top choice for high-ranking officers. The CL Series was the perfect option for a star luxury car but this all changed with the new generation. While the CL became history, the Coupe and Cabriolet car bodies came to be known as the S Series. If you were looking to buy a luxury Mercedes, it was only proper that you’d go for the S Series.
The S Series Coupe and Cabriolet’s styles characteristically differ from sedan car bodies which focus on the comfort of the passenger in the back seat; the Coupe and Cabriolet resemble a style accessory and are designed in more detail. For instance, you can have Swarovski crystals dazzle in the headlights, and 30 mesmerizing alternatives for turn signals and 17 for daytime running lights. You can also choose from 16 different seat upholstery alternatives, or 4 different ceiling colors for the Cabriolet. Since this is Mercedes we’re talking about, one shouldn’t be surprised with the amount of technology featured in the car. The S Series’ familiar digital dashboard and central control panel (which is the size of a small TV) make for a perfect start. What comes next is the unique driving systems.
For instance, the Cabriolet’s deflector AIRCAP (hidden in the front glass frame) diminishes the effect of wind in the interior while the hood is up. If you feel chilly, AIRSCARF runs to your help by blowing a warm breeze on your neck. The air suspension system (except for the AMG division) guarantees a driving experience on clouds while dozens of auxiliary equipment makes sure that the driving quality isn’t affected even by cross winds. Power alternatives are limited – Cabriolet’s only power source is an S500 with an initial phase of 4.7-liter V8 engine that generates 455 HP and 700 Nm torque. The 9-gear automatic transmission box limits this version’s maximum speed to 250 km/h but the fact that it can go from 0 to 100 km in 4.6 seconds shows that it can do much more than that. The Coupe offers this engine along with 4MATIC, the four-wheel traction system, and has the same performance values. Those who’re looking for more can take a look at the S63 AMG 4MATIC Coupe. It has a 5.5-liter V8 that generates 585 HP and 900 Nm torque, and can take this 2-ton coupe from 0 to100 km/h in 3.9 seconds.
Porsche 911 Carrera Coupe and Cabrio
The term “legendary” is heedlessly used in the automotive world but the Porsche 911 is a among the limited elite that properly deserve the title. Manufactured in 1963 for the first time, the 911 has since left its mark in the realm of sports cars with its unchanging silhouette. Many even claim that its outlook is one of the few most popular in the world.
The 911 is the latest representative of VW Beetle’s undercarriage designed by Ferdinand Porsche. The rear engine/rear thrust used to offer a perfect balance for fast drives. However, safety and industry expectations have changed over time, and it’s been decided that the best setting is either central engine/rear thrust or front engine/rear thrust. While the weight distribution generated by the rear engine/rear thrust resulted in a pleasant drive for 911 at low speed, it decreased the front grip at high speed, which meant that the vehicle would slide. In order to keep the 911 alive, Porsche spent a great deal of money to make use of this mortal setting, and thus, has become one of the most competent automobile manufacturers in terms of engineering. The moral of the story is that it’s not that easy to keep a legend alive.
Whether Coupe or Cabrio, the 911’s most important aspect is its practicability, especially for a sports car. Thanks to a new generation extended wheelbase, the back seat offers a usable living space for the first time. Moreover, all 911s except for extreme models are known as practical and comfortable cars. The only thing you should pay attention to while driving a 911 is the fact that the rear fender is wider than the front one – so the 911 is not a car that can pass through anywhere its nose can fit. All the other features are developed to offer a comfortable drive and convenience for daily life. In addition, thanks to high engineering, it’s not as fragile as super sports cars. For instance, Porsche uses the most durable dual-clutch transmission boxes in the industry, and the brand always ranks top in consumer satisfaction polls.
All this adds to the fact that the 911 is a privileged car, and an expert in driving pleasure. Moreover, if we’re to include the Targa, it has a rich variety of 21 options, among which Carrera is the most striking one. Its 3.0-liter engine generates 370 HP and 450 Nm torque. If you think it is a bit too generous, you’re right. In the past, turbocharge used to be a feature reserved for the exclusive members of the 911 family but this has recently changed. Now, even the Carrera is powered by a twin-turbo engine, and its performance values are more impressive than ever: it can go from 0 to 100 km/h in 4.6 seconds with manual transmission and 4.4 seconds in PDK transmission. If you purchase the Chrono Sport, this duration decreases to 4.2 seconds. The maximum speed is 295 km/h with manual transmission and 293 km/h in PDK. Keep in mind that this is the ground level; towards the other end of the product spectrum is Turbo S version, powered by a 3.8-liter engine that generates 580 HP and 700 Nm torque. In this version, the 911 can go up from 0 to 100 km/h in 3 seconds and has a maximum speed of 330 km/h.