Why Does The Porsche 911 Still Have Its Rear Engine?
The Porsche 911 is one of the most prized sports cars on the market, carrying a fine tradition that keeps buyers coming year after year. A part of this is a holdover that it’s used since the days of the 356: a rear engine, with only two mid-engine exceptions the whole time that it’s been made. As you can imagine, there’s a bit of a question as to why this is. After all, engine placement is one of the first things that goes into designing a car, so Porsche has had plenty of chances, year after year, to change things up. But they haven’t. Let’s explore why.
One of the major things controlled by engine placement is weight distribution. The rear-driven axle of a 911 versus a regular car means that you have more load placed on the rear tires. This ultimately means more traction on acceleration. Said power will also reach the ground more efficiently, since there’s no driveshaft it has to travel through.
As an added note, rear-engine cars have braking advantages too. Braking performance is controlled by how evenly braking force is distributed over all four tires. This is in comparison to acceleration, where it’s more favored to put as much weight onto the driven axle as possible.
How does this play out? When braking, a rear-engine car will distribute its weight in a more even manner front-to-rear.
When it comes to sports cars, recognition and brand are everything. Even with different Porsche 911 variants being made, there are still certain hallmarks that people expect. This could apply to any product, really, but these are some of the intangible reasons why Porsche has never felt the need to swap out their engine. The bottom line? If a car can drive this well and still have its engine in the rear, there’s no need to fix what isn’t broken. Chances are we probably won’t see a change unless competition necessitates it.
Visit your local Joe Rizza dealership in Orland Park to see our extensive inventory of the Porsche 911.