The 2017 Porsche 911 Targa 4S is an exciting throwback to the original Targa with the same looks, but a whole lot more tech and performance. It’s a modern-day high powered equivalent to the classic car, and it’s exhilarating to drive around. We’ll get into what makes it so special down below, but to really understand what makes the car special you have to drive it for yourself.

2017 porsche 911 targa 4s

It Has the Original Look

The car looks very similar to the original 911 Targa with the same curvaceous rear glass, the same Targa bar and the same overall body shape. Sure it’s not identical, but for a Porsche enthusiast it’s the best you’ll get other than picking up the original vehicle for nostalgia’s sake.

An Advanced Retractable Top

The cloth top on the original Targa couldn’t have been simpler. You unhook a few clips and it pops right off. The modern equivalent of that is an overly-complicated electrical-mechanical matchup that takes nearly 20 seconds to fold down the top under the glass. The plus side of that is that during that time you don’t have to do anything. You press the button and the top folds up and out of the way until you need it again. It’s convenient, you just have to be patient.

A Whole Lot of Power

The modern Targa 4S comes with a massive amount of power. You’ll have 420 HP and 368 lb.-ft. of torque at your disposal thanks to the 3.0 liter twin-turbo flat six under the hood. It’s water cooled and mechanically impressive and the car really hauls down the road because of it. There’s no better feeling than stomping on the pedal and being thrown back against the seat as you literally launch.

Smooth Shifting

The Targa 4S comes standard with a silky 7-speed manual transmission that’s fun to operate, but if you’re not the shifting type, or you want the absolute peak performance, you can upgrade to the seven-speed dual clutch automatic PDK transmission. It gets the job done faster and more smoothly, and you don’t have a clutch pedal to worry about. Either way power distribution is excellent and you’ll climb through the gears without any notable jerks or uneven performance.

Massive Performance Power

Thanks to that oversized engine that I mentioned earlier the 2017 Targa 4S is a serious monster on the track. 0 to 60 happens in just 3.3 seconds, a quarter mile is over in 11.7 seconds and the car stops on a dime with 0 to 60 occurring in just 97 feet. Sure it won’t win any fuel efficiency awards with a 24 MPG combined rating, but it saves fuel better than many other sports cars that you’ll encounter.

If there’s something about the handling of the Porsche that you don’t like, you might be able to modify it to your liking as well. You can change around the drive mode between Sport, Sport + and a small collection of other drive modes to change the steering stiffness, the throttle response and shifting aggression to get you a dynamic that feels right for your situation.

The 911 Targa 4S is a real joy to drive, but it doesn’t come cheap with a base price of just over $123,000. It’s not uncommon for the price tag to climb above $150,000 with options added on, so you have to be comfortable spending heavily to enjoy this car.