On the second day of Christmas!

I owe much of my love for sports cars to Porsche. I learned to drive on a racetrack from behind the wheel of an early 1980’s 924S. It was a manual shift in Guards Red with black leatherette seats. Soon I graduated to the 944 Turbo and then the wonderful, but truly terrifying 911 Turbo. Watch out for that back end, it bites when least expected. The fastest I have ever driven a car was in a race-prepared Porsche 911 Turbo, reaching stratospheric speeds in excess of 300 km/h. Now that was a thrill and one I would chose to repeat in only a handful of cars.

With this in mind, choosing my favourite exotic car ride for 2016 was obvious. I was one of a handful of auto journalists attending a first drive event of the all-new 2017 Porsche 911 Carrera S Cabriolet on Tenerife in the Canary Islands. The setting was equally as stunning as the bright yellow and blue Porsches lining the driveway of The Ritz-Carlton, Abama resort. We didn’t reach speeds worthy of a race track, but the thrill was just as intense with sharply winding two-lane pavement slashing through mountain countryside and volcanic lava rock in a setting straight out of a Jules Vern novel.

The 2017 Porsche 911 Carrera S Cabriolet inspires with 420 horsepower at 6,500 rpm and 368 lb-ft of torque at 1,700- 5,000 rpm. It takes 4.5 seconds to reach 100 km/h in the manual; 4.3 with the PDK and .2 seconds less when adding the Sport Chrono package for a total of 4.1 seconds. Top speed is listed at 306 km/h in manual form.

Exterior changes are mostly cosmetic, the obligatory bulging round headlights, dramatically sloped rear quarter and slippery outer shell are iconic. Interior driving dynamics offer everything you expect in a Porsche 911 and more. The leather-wrapped 3-spoke brushed metal steering wheel feels prefect in my hands, thumb grips and an indented rest provide the ultimate control. For me, this is driving at its finest.

There is a lot to be said for German engineering at its best and a 54-year track record of fun. A long history of success repeats itself for model year 2017. No matter the decade, iconic never gets old.

Related links:

Porsche Canada
The Ritz-Carlton, Abama

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