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The Porsche 911 may, for some, be the quintessential sportscar. And that typically means keeping it on paved roads and racing circuits. But there's a proud history to taking the Elfen off-road that traces back to specially-prepared 911s (like the one pictured above) which Porsche fielded in rallies in the late '70s and early '80s. And now Porsche is reportedly preparing to tap back into that history with a new off-road 911 model, according to the Auto Bild Motor Revue.
Tipped to be called the 911 Safari, the special variant would be based on the Carrera 4 but upgrade with bigger tires fitted to a beefed-up suspension with higher ground clearance and underbody skid plates. The model is expected to be presented initially as a concept at the Beijing Motor Show next April. But if enough interest is expressed - particularly from buyers in developing markets where the roads might not be as smooth as those to which North American and European drivers have become accustomed - Stuttgart could put it into production in 2016, when the current 991 is expected to get a mid-cycle refresh.
The other day, Porsche announced a new special edition of the Cayenne. We didn't pay it much heed because it appeared to be exclusive to Europe (or, at least, markets other than ours), but now Porsche has announced its availability in North America, as well.
It's called the Platinum Edition, and it's available exclusively on the entry-level models with either the 3.6-liter V6 or 3.0-liter turbodiesel V6. You can tell the special edition apart from any other Cayenne by the silver details (accenting the grilles, window trim and rear spoiler) and its two-tone black and beige leather interior. But what makes it a compelling choice is the long list of equipment, which Porsche has identified as the most requested options and fitted them as standard, including the eight-speed Tiptronic S transmission, Power Steering Plus, Park Assist, Convenience Package and Bose audio.
Pricing starts at $63,300 for the Cayenne Platinum Edition, or $66,900 for the Cayenne Diesel Platinum Edition. That represents a premium of approximately $13,000 over a bone-stock model, but actually saves you a few grand if you were going to select all those options anyway. Check out the press release below for all the details.
Russian-born tennis superstar Maria Sharapova has just inked a three-year deal with Porsche to be its brand ambassador, a position that will put her on a global campaign for the German automaker. The 26-year-old athlete isn't new to the role - she previously signed a similar three-year deal with Land Rover in 2006.
"Maria Sharapova is an exceptional athlete. She combines top performance in her sports with elegance and power. These are precisely the qualities that are embroiled in our sports cars," explained Matthias Mueller, CEO of Porsche AG, during the announcement. "Her profile and charisma are an ideal fit for Porsche. She is also highly respected around the world and enjoys an outstanding reputation," he added.
Some consider Porsche's choice of a female tennis player as its ambassador interesting, if not surprising. The automaker has traditionally marketed its vehicles with a masculine edge - Sharapova and the sport of tennis position the brand in a different light - likely an intentional decision. Do you think Porsche's choice was a good one? If not, who would you choose as its global ambassador?