Porsche is celebrating an extraordinary world premiere at the Los Angeles Auto Show: the new Porsche 911 Dakar is just as comfortable off-road as it is on the highway. Limited to just 2,500 examples, this exclusive model does not just demonstrate the all-but-limitless possibilities of the Porsche 911 concept: it also evokes the first overall victory by Porsche in the 1984 Paris-Dakar Rally. This momentous win further marked the birth of all-wheel drive in the Porsche 911. This is why the new 911 Dakar is also offered with an optional Rallye Design Package, reminiscent of that iconic winning car.
The first striking detail of the Porsche 911 Dakar is its ground clearance, which is 50 mm higher than that of a 911 Carrera with sports suspension. In addition, the standard lift system can raise the front and rear ends a further 30 mm. Its ground clearance and ramp angle rival those of conventional SUVs. The lift system is not designed merely for driving over obstacles at low speeds, but is rather an integral part of the re-tuned suspension. The ‘high level’ setting is available for ambitious off-road adventures at speeds of up to 170 km/h. Above that speed, the car automatically lowers back down to its normal level.
Complementing the car’s sporty off-road attributes are specially developed Pirelli Scorpion All Terrain Plus tires (245/45 ZR 19 at the front and 295/40 ZR 20 at the rear). The chunky tread pattern is 9 mm deep and the reinforced sidewalls and the threads consist of two carcass plies. All this makes the tires of the Porsche 911 Dakar ideal even for challenging terrain and they are highly cut-resistant. Pirelli P Zero summer and winter tires are available as an option, also with two carcass plies. Nevertheless, the all-terrain tires come as standard and offer sports car dynamics on the road as well.
Commanding power on all surfaces
The three-litre bi-turbo six-cylinder with 473 HP and a maximum torque of 420 lb.-ft. delivers superior performance with a compelling boxer sound. The new sports car sprints to 100 km/h in 3.4 seconds; due to the all-terrain tires, the top speed is limited to 240 km/h.
As standard, the engine comes with an eight-speed PDK and Porsche all-wheel drive. The standard equipment also includes rear-axle steering, the engine mounts from the 911 GT3, and PDCC anti-roll stabilization. The interplay of all the components results in the 911 Dakar being just as dynamic on sand and loose surfaces as it is on the Nürburgring Nordschleife. Its maximum off-road performance is also thanks in part to two new driving modes, which are selectable via the rotary switch on the steering wheel. Rallye mode is ideal for loose, uneven surfaces and features rear-focused all-wheel drive. In off-road mode the high clearance is activated automatically. This mode is designed for maximum traction on difficult terrain and on sand. Both of the new driving modes also feature the new Rallye Launch Control, which enables impressive acceleration on loose surfaces and allows wheel slippage of around 20 per cent.
Standard off-road characteristics and optionally available with a roof basket or roof tent
Additional characteristic features of the 911 Dakar include the newly developed, fixed lightweight rear spoiler made of CFRP and the CFRP front luggage compartment lid with striking air outlets taken from the 911 GT3. There are also standard off-road details such as the red aluminium towing lugs at the front and back, the widened wheel wells and sills and the stainless steel protective elements on the front, rear and side sills. The side air intakes on the redesigned front end are also protected against flying rocks by stainless steel grilles.
The roof of the Porsche 911 Dakar features a visible 12-volt power outlet for the headlights of the optional roof rack. With a capacity of 42 kilograms, the rack can accommodate rallying equipment such as fuel and water canisters, folding shovels and traction boards. A roof tent is also available for the 911 Dakar.
In the interior, the 911 Dakar underscores its sporting ambitions with standard full bucket seats and the omission of the rear seats. Lightweight glass and a lightweight battery reduce its weight further, enabling the Porsche 911 Dakar to weigh in at just 1,605 kg – a mere 10 kg heavier than the 911 Carrera 4 GTS with PDK.
A defining feature of the Dakar interior is the standard Race-Tex surfaces with decorative stitching in Shade Green, which is also exclusively available as a metallic exterior finish for the 911 Dakar.
Rallye Design Package with styling that echoes that of the 1984 Paris-Dakar-winning rally car
The foundation of the optional Rallye Design Package is the two-tone finish in White/Gentian Blue Metallic. This combination of two-tone paintwork and wrapping on a standard model is a first for Porsche. On the side of the vehicle, the customer can choose an individual race number from “0” to “999”. In addition to decorative stripes in red and gold, the 911 Dakar with the Rallye Design Package – the look of which reprises the winning car from the 1984 Dakar Rally – also features a ‘Roughroads’ logo on the doors. The term is a registered trademark and reflects the concept of the 911 Dakar and its suitability for driving off-road. The white-painted rims and the red taillight strip, in contrast to the standard vehicle, round off the distinctive appearance. Further highlights can be found in the interior: Extended Race-Tex and leather surrounds as well as seat belts and accents in Sharkblue.
Porsche Design Chronograph
Customers of the 911 Dakar can exclusively order the Porsche Design Chronograph 1 ‒ 911 Dakar or the Chronograph 1 ‒ 911 Dakar Rallye Design Edition to go with their car. For the first time, the housing is made of particularly scratch-resistant and light titanium carbide.
Expected to begin arriving in Canada in the spring, the new 2023 911 Dakar is available for order now starting at $247,200. The Rallye Design Package costs $32,490.