993 is the company’s internal name for the version of the Porsche 911 model manufactured and sold between late 1993 and early 1998, replacing the 964. Its discontinuation marked the end of air-cooled Porsches.
Like previous and future generations of the Porsche 911, there were several variants of the car manufactured, varying in body style, drivetrains, and included equipment. The Porsche 993 was replaced by the Porsche 996.
The external design of the Porsche 993, penned by Englishman Toni Hatter, retained the basic bodyshell architecture of the 964 and other earlier 911 models, but with revised external panels, with much more flared wheelarches and a smoother front and rear bumper design, an enlarged retractable rear wing, teardrop mirrors, but keeping the doors and roof panels.
A major change was the implementation of all alloy multi-link rear suspension attached to an alloy sub frame, a completely new design derived from the project 989, a four-door sedan which never went into production. The system later continued in the 993’s successor, type 996, and required the widening of the rear wheel arches, which gave better stability. The new suspension improved handling, making it more direct, more stable, and helping to reduce tendency to oversteer if the throttle was lifted during hard cornering, a trait of earlier 911s. It also reduced interior noise and improved ride quality.
The 993 was the first generation of 911 to have a standard six-speed manual transmission; previous cars, except for the Porsche 959, had 4- or 5-speed gearboxes. In virtually every situation, it was possible to keep the engine in its best torque range above 4500 rpm. The Carrera / Carrera S / Cabriolet and Targa models (2WD) were available with a “Tiptronic” 4-speed automatic transmission, first introduced in the 964. Beginning with model year 1995, Porsche offered the Tiptronic S with additional steering wheel mounted controls and refined software for smoother, quicker shifts. Since the 993’s introduction, the Tiptronic is capable of recognizing climbs and descents.
Further, the 993’s optional all wheel drive system was refined over that of the 964. Porsche departed from the 964’s setup consisting of three differentials and revised the system based on the layout from its 959 supercar, replacing the centre differential with a viscous coupling unit. In conjunction with the 993’s redesigned suspension, this system improved handling characteristics and still retained the stability offered by all wheel drive without having to suffer compromises. Its simpler layout also reduced the system’s weight.
Other improvements include a new dual-flow exhaust, larger brakes with drilled discs, and revised power steering.
Carrera Coupe / Cabriolet
The Carrera was the base 993 and available in rear and all-wheel drive versions. It was equipped with the naturally aspirated 3.6 liter M64 engine, further developed from the 964, and combined with a new dual-flow exhaust system now incorporating two catalytic converters. In contrast with the Type 964, Porsche deleted the “2” from the rear-wheel drive “Carrera” name tag. However among enthusiasts, to differentiate between the rear-wheel and all-wheel drive variants of the Type 993 Carrera they were (and still are) commonly referred to as “C2” and “C4”, respectively.
The 1996 coupe version had a curb weight of 1370 kg. US models had a ground clearance (at curb weight) of 120 mm whereas European versions had 110 mm. This was further lowered with the sport chassis option to 90 mm.
The options list for the 993 Carrera (and most other variants) offered many choices, including up to five different styles of wheels, various suspension set-ups, and three different seat styles (comfort, sport, racing). In addition, many upholstery options were offered and various sound systems including digital sound processing. Further, customers had the option of any color other than standard shades. Even more, the Tequipment- and Exclusive-Programs added further options and built to order almost any specific wishes of customers such as special consoles, fax-machines or even brightly colored interior upholstery.
The Cabriolet, introduced in 1994 for the 1995 model year, features a fully electrical and hand-stitched soft-top reinforced with metal sheets and an automatic wind-blocker.
Both coupe and cabriolet versions were available with all-wheel drive. From the outside the Carrera 4 is distinguishable by clear front turn markers and rear red markers (each instead of orange). The brake calipers are painted silver as is the ‘Carrera 4’ badge on the hood. The center wheelcaps carry the Carrera 4 logo instead of the Porsche crest.
In contrast with most of the other variants, production of the Carrera Coupe and Cabriolet ceased with the end of model year 1997, except for a very few produced in a shortened 1998 model year.
The Targa version of the 993 was introduced in model year 1996 and saw the debut of a retractable glass roof, a design continued on the 996 and 997 Targa. The glass roof would retract underneath the rear window revealing a large opening. A shade was there to help prevent the greenhouse effect of the closed roof. This system was a complete redesign, as previous Targa models had a removable roof section and a wide B-pillar functioning as a roll bar. The new glass roof design allowed the 993 Targa to retain the same side-on profile as the other 911 Carrera variants and finished with the inconvenience of storing the removed top of the old system. The Targa has the body of the convertible with the Targa glass roof replacing the fabric roof.
The Targa was equipped with distinctive 2-piece 17-inch (430 mm) wheels, which could be ordered as an option on all cars not having standard 18-inch (460 mm) wheels. Problems with the Targa include heat in the cabin, creaking noises on rough roads and a very complicated and unreliable mechanism.
Production Numbers: 1996:ROW 1980 US/Canada 462 1997:ROW 1276 US/Canada 567 1998:ROW 212 US/Canada 122 Total Production Run 993 911 Targa: 4619
The 993 Turbo coupe was released in 1995. It featured a new turbocharged engine displacing 3.6 liters producing 408 PS (300 kW; 402 hp). Twin turbochargers and air-to-air intercoolers, electronic engine management, redesigned cylinder heads and other modified engine internals were used. The 993 Turbo was the first Porsche Turbo with all wheel drive. The electronic engine management helped the Turbo to achieve fuel efficiency far superior to any of the previous production Turbos. In connection with two catalytic converters and an on-board-diagnostics-system including four oxygen-sensors, it also made the 993 Turbo the cleanest sports car at its time. The Turbo’s bodywork differs from the Carrera body by widened rear wheel arches (approximately 6 cm), redesigned front and rear bumper moldings, and a fixed rear wing housing the intercoolers. New 18-inch (460 mm) alloy wheels with weight-reducing hollow spokes were standard.
This was one of the first production cars in the world to have OBDII diagnostics (the 3.8 liter and track versions didn’t have it, and the normally aspirated 993s didn’t get it until 1996). All turbos since have had water-cooled heads. The car also had brakes that were larger than those on the base Carrera model.
Within the 1996 through 1998 production run, there were two distinct differences – the 1996 and the later ones. The 1997s and 1998s had the following differences from the 1996s: 1 – Stronger transmission input shafts (a known weakness due to the combination of immense power and AWD). 2 – An ECU that was able to be flashed and modified (the 1996 was not modifiable). 3 – With the addition of a Porsche child seat, the passenger airbag was cutoff. 4 – Motion sensors for the alarm that were integrated into the map light above the rear view mirror. 5 – Standard wheel center caps that said “turbo” (the 1996 version had Porsche crests).
During the second to the last year of production of the 993 (1997), Porsche offered the 993 Turbo S. Ultimately 183 cars were sold. The Turbo S is a high-spec Turbo including a power upgrade to 450 hp (DIN) (424 hp (SAE) for the American market). The inclusion of extras including carbonfibre decoration in the interior makes it different from the earlier lightweight, spartan 964 Turbo S. The 993 Turbo S is recognized by yellow brake calipers, a slightly larger rear wing, a 4-pipe exhaust and air scoops behind the doors. This was the last of the air-cooled Turbos. 12 Turbo S cars were delivered to [Australia].
Carrera 4S / Carrera S
The Carrera 4 S (1996) and later Carrera S (1997) shared the Turbo model’s bodyshell, but housed the naturally aspirated Carrera engine in the rear. The 4S came with four-wheel drive, and retained the Turbo model’s larger brake discs with the characteristic red calipers. It could be described as a “Turbo without the turbochargers and rear wing”, whereas the S was in all aspects a standard Carrera underneath (the wider rear fenders were compensated with 31 mm (1.2 in) wheel spacers). Both S models had slightly lowered suspension compared to standard Carrera models. Although a Carrera S Cabriolet was never officially offered by the factory, a small number (believed to be 5) were special ordered through the Porsche Exclusive department in 1997 and sold as 1998 models by Beverly Hills Porsche in California. The wide body is widely acclaimed for its rear looks, but creates more aerodynamic drag, leading to slightly lower top speeds compared to the narrower siblings (about 5 km/h).
The Carrera RS is a lightweight variant of the Carrera. It features a naturally aspirated 3.8 liter engine with 300 hp (DIN). On the outside it is easily distinguishable by a special non-retractable rear wing, small front flaps and 3-piece 18-inch (460 mm) aluminum wheels. The headlight washers were deleted for weight saving reasons. Inside the rear seats were removed, and special racing seats and spartan door cards were installed. Sound proofing was also reduced to a minimum.
There are further RS variants, in particular a track-oriented Carrera RS Clubsport (also referred to as the RSR in some countries) with relatively limited road usability. The Clubsport came equipped with a welded roll cage and certain comfort features such as carpets, power windows, air conditioning and radio were deleted. Externally it sports a larger rear wing and deeper chin spoiler than the standard RS.
The Carrera RS was produced in model years 1995 and 1996. It was street legal in European and many other countries around the world, but was not approved for export to the United States. As with the relative low production-quantity RS variants of earlier 911 types, some Porsche owners will turn to the standard Carrera and modify it into an RS clone as an enthusiast’s attempt to own something that otherwise is unobtainable due to the rarity and consequent high market value of the RS. The practice, often using authentic Porsche-sourced RS parts, is perhaps more common amongst U.S. owners, since the RS/RS Clubsport was never certified for sale there.
The GT2 was the racing version of the Turbo. By the mid 1990s most of the sanctioning bodies of road racing had placed severe limitations if not outright bans on the use all-wheel drive systems, due in part to Audi’s earlier success in campaigning their various Quattro cars in touring car races around the globe, to Porsche’s 959 and its racing version the Porsche 961, and in part to the Nissan Skyline. It was in this atmosphere that in order to take their turbo-engined 993 racing, Porsche created the rear drive GT2. The deletion of the front drivetrain also brought with it the benefit of significant weight savings to the competition car. To qualify the car for racing a limited number of street GT2s were created for homologation purposes, which are now highly prized and valued by Porsche 993 collectors. The interior treatment of the GT2 is similar to that of the sibling Carrera RS. On the exterior, the fenders of the Turbo have been cut back and replaced with bolt-on plastic pieces in order to accommodate large racing tires and to help ease the repairs of damage to the fenders that are an often reoccurring event in auto racing.
Until 1997, the street version of GT2 racecar, named GT had almost the same engine as the Turbo, but operated with higher boost pressure and delivering 430 bhp (DIN). In model year 1998 it was raised to 450 bhp (DIN) and a twin ignition was added.
The many racing variants have different engine set-ups depending on the applicable racing series. By 1996 the factory-quoted power rating was 465 bhp at 5,700 rpm and torque of 670 Nm at 5,000 rpm. Power output came as high as 600 bhp (450 kW) in an “Evo” version designed for the GT1-series, which was ultimately replaced by the mid-engine 911 GT1.
Additionally, the rear deck lid of an original GT2 will also sport “911 GT” instead of “911 GT2”.
The Speedster model, was a variant of the 993, with a lowered roof, and a redesigned interior.
In contrast to the G-model and the 964, Porsche never officially released a 993 Speedster. However, two were built by the factory: a dark green Speedster equipped with Tiptronic S and 17-inch (430 mm) wheels for Ferdinand Alexander Porsche (for his 60th anniversary) in 1995 and another wide-body, silver Speedster with manual transmission and 18-inch (460 mm) wheels for American TV star Jerry Seinfeld in 1998. The Seinfeld speedster was originally delivered as either a cabriolet or targa model and later sent back to the factory “Exclusive” department to be “rebuilt” as a speedster.
After the 3.3 liter G-model Turbo convertible (1987–89), Porsche never officially offered an air-cooled Turbo convertible again. However, in 1995 a small number (believed to be 14) 993 Turbo Cabriolets were sold before the introduction of the 993 Turbo coupe. They featured the 360 hp (DIN) single-turbo engine of the 964 Turbo 3.6, a 5-speed manual transmission, rear-wheel drive and the wing of the 964 Turbo 3.6. This required a premium of DM 89,500 (or plus 62%) over the standard 993 Cabriolet’s price.
The 993 is powered by an air-cooled Porsche flat-six “boxer” engine using a Single Overhead Cam (SOHC) valvetrain. Porsche had begun employing the earliest evolution of this overhead cam engine in the 1963 Porsche 901, which had a displacement of 2 liters and produced 130 hp (DIN).
More specifically, the 993 engine is the final factory refinement of the Porsche-designated “M64” boxer engine. The standard, naturally aspirated M64/05(06) engine at 3.6 liters capacity is a refined version of the M64/01 installed in the 964 Carrera. At first, the M64/05(06) made 272 hp (DIN) through model year 1995, before Porsche switched to the VarioRam -equipped M64/21(22) engine, and power output increased to 285 PS (210 kW; 281 hp) . Slightly more powerful versions with 3.8 liter were available in the Carrera RS and as build-to-order options throughout the 993’s lifespan.
The 3.6 liter twin turbo M64/60 engine uses two KKK K16 turbos and produces 408 PS (300 kW; 402 hp), although more powerful versions (430 and 450 hp (DIN)) were available as build-to-order options, in the Turbo S, and in the GT2. Depending on the country, Porsche still offers 430 and 450 PS (331 kW; 444 hp) kits for the Turbo.
Porsche 993 How-to and Tech Articles
Do you want to know how to black out your headlights or customize your rims? Have you ever wondered how you can modify your Porsche 993? Do you want to know which are the best performance tires for you…
Show more »
993 Faq Frequently Asked Questions about the Porsche 1994-1997 993
Please note, those links are DIY some other Porsche drivers have done to their cars. We can not be responsible for anything that happens if you do this to your car.