2023 Porsche 911 Carrera 4 GTS Review

The Goldilocks 911.

By Kunal Dsouza Wheels.ca

May 15, 2023 5 min. read

Article was updated 15 days ago

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With 25 different variations of the Porsche 911 choosing the right one can seem a bit of a daunting task. The Carrera 4 GTS, however, is one the easiest recommendations in the lineup with its perfect mix of features and bits from Porsche’s extensive options list.

A GTS slots above the Carrera S and under the atomic-powered Turbo. It has 473 hp and 420 lb-ft of torque which is 30 more hp and 30 more torques than an S. If you want something track-capable but don’t want to step up into the racier GT3, you can order a GTS with carbon bucket seats and a lightweight package that deletes the rear seats among other things. Perfect for casual track days.

The GTS gets a host of performance enhancements standard. Like a sports suspension with a 10mm lower ride height, PASM which is Porsche speak for adaptive dampers, the Sport Chrono package, blacked out trim, and Race-tex microfibre material covering the seats, lower dashboard, and steering wheel.

2023 Porsche 911 Carrera 4 GTS

2023 Porsche 911 Carrera 4 GTS

Optional extras are numerous and can inflate the price quickly and my tester included quite a few of them. The lightweight package was the most expensive at $9910 and saves up to 25kgs (55lbs) of weight with carbon bucket front seats, a rear seat delete, lightweight glass, and less sound insulation. The package also includes rear-axle steering, which enhances agility even further, and front-end lift is reduced through the use of aerodynamic optimization in the front section of the underbody. You can opt to keep the more comfortable sport seats if you find the carbon buckets uncomfortable.

The Carrera GTS is a sweet spot in the 911 lineup. The optional Bose Surround sound system, a part of the premium package, was excellent and one of the best I’ve heard in a 911. Mixed with luxurious feeling Race-tex fabric surfaces and the Carmine red stitching that matched the Carmine red tachometer and dash clock and, of course, the Carmine red paint job, the 911 GTS I got to drive for a week was stunning inside and out.

2023 Porsche 911 Carrera 4 GTS

Even without the badging on the back, the lower stance and black wheels give the 911 GTS presence for days. The car has grown larger over the decades but its elegant shape and simple design are equal parts beautiful and purposeful. It’s a car that gets attention but this is still a bit of an undercover supercar (whether or not it’s actually a supercar is up for debate).

Getting in and finding the perfect seating position is easy. The hood drops down and away from sight giving you an expansive view of the road in the front of you. Like every new 911, you twist a plastic stub resembling a keyfob to the left of the steering wheel and the 3-litre turbocharged flat-6 grumbles to life and settles into that characteristic gravelly idle that could only come from the back of a 911.

2023 Porsche 911 Carrera 4 GTS

The grippy Race-tex surfaces on the steering wheel and seats have become a GTS hallmark. They make the car feel a bit more special as do the Carmine red accents in this tester. It’s a good place to be with minimal distractions or gimmicks to get in your way of driving.

I’ve driven many different variations of the 911 from mild to racy, and the GTS truly feels the most balanced. It might seem like a bit of a spreadsheet car with only incremental improvements over a Carrera S but in the real world it feels like a lot more.

The Carrera 4 GTS is noticeably quicker than a 4S. So much quicker I had to check if Porsche hadn’t mistakenly given me the keys to a 911 turbo. It accelerates more brutally than the much more expensive GT3, and while it might not sound as raw, the flat-6 behind your back still generates a mechanical symphony of the highest order and it's even more audible here thanks to less sound insulation.

The 8-speed PDK is still the best automatic gearbox on the planet. In any condition, or situation it does exactly what you want it to do. It shifts faster than you can think and is always in the correct gear. If you blip the throttle sharply or pull the left paddle, the resulting downshift is instantaneous and perfectly rev-matched. This and the Carrera 4’s all-wheel-drive system work together to deliver breathtaking levels of thrust especially when blasting out of a corner.

2023 Porsche 911 Carrera 4 GTS

Crisp and clear electric power steering feels alive in your hands. It’s precise and reactive and together with the perfect driving position, epic brakes, and sublime gearbox, it’s one of the best driving experiences to be had. There’s so much confidence gained through just the feel of the controls that it’s one of the easiest and most approachable sports cars to drive but in the hands of a pro it becomes a tool through its consistency and predictability. The sports suspension makes it noticeably stiffer and the ride gets rough over crappy roads but that comes with the territory.

Really, much of the above can be said of any 911, but the GTS is just a bit sharper without getting too extreme. It’s all the best bits of the 911 in one convenient package and that's why it’s one of the easiest to recommend regardless of how many other variants exist.

2023 Porsche 911 Carrera 4 GTS

BODY STYLE: 2-passenger compact sports car

CONFIGURATION: Rear-engine, all-wheel drive

ENGINE: 3.0-L twin-turbocharged boxer-6; Power: 473 hp @6500 rpm; 420 lb-ft @ 2300-5000 rpm

TRANSMISSION: 8-speed dual-clutch automatic

FUEL ECONOMY: (Premium Gasoline in L/100 km):13.8 city; 10.1 highway; 12.2 combined

CARGO CAPACITY: 132+64 (frunk) litres

PRICE: $166,600 (base); $202,340 (as-tested) not including fees, taxes

WEBSITE: Porsche Canada



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