The 2023 Porsche 911 Dakar is finally here, and it feels like we've been transported back to 1984.
Porsche has revealed the 911 Dakar at the Los Angeles Auto Show wearing a livery inspired by the iconic Rothmans colorway. For those who may not know, the livery is reminiscent of the modified Porsche 911 that claimed overall victory at the 1984 Paris-Dakar rally.
As expected from the Porsche teaser from last week, the 911 Dakar is all-terrain supercar, but now we have the exact numbers of its increase in ride height. In standard form, the 911 Dakar sits 50 mm taller than a standard 911 Carrera. But with its lift system activated, the car gets an additional 30 mm of ground clearance for ambitious off-road adventures up to 170 km/h. When it goes past that speed, the car lowers back down to its normal ride height for aerodynamic and safety purposes.
Porsche tapped Pirelli to design a special standard all-terrain tire for the 911 Dakar. Sized 245/45ZR19 in front and 295/40R20 at the rear, the all-terrain tires were optimized for challenging terrain while being puncture-resistant.
Despite being built for the rough stuff, Porsche took some bits from the GT3 and installed it to the 911 Dakar. Those include the carbon fiber reinforced plastic roof, rear wheel steering and engine mounts as well as the fixed bucket seats and lightweight glass. To reinforce the underbody, Porsche fitted a stainless steel mesh grille to prevent damage from rock strikes.
Powering the 911 Dakar is a 3.0-liter twin-turbo flat-six engine that produces 480 PS and 570 Nm of torque. In the 911 lineup, the engine and power output is similar to the Carrera 4 GTS. Sadly, there's no manual transmission option, and the 911 Dakar is offered with only an 8-speed PDK to send power to all four wheels.
Aside from the usual drive modes, Porsche added a Rallye and Off-Road mode to optimize power delivery and maximize traction in rough surfaces. Among those also include a rally-specific launch control for a WRC-style takeoff on loose grounds.
With its ride height increased, the 911 Dakar still remains a supercar through and through, as it can sprint to 100 km/h from a standstill in just 3.2 seconds. Meanwhile, top speed is limited to 240 km/h because of the all-terrain tires.
For those who'd like to take the 911 Dakar on overlanding trips, the car is being offered with an optional roof basket or roof tent. The rack has a 12-volt power outlet for additional driving lights while being capable of holding items up to 42 kg in weight. In addition, the rack can accommodate items such as jerry cans, folding shovels and traction boards.
Porsche is now accepting orders for the 911 Dakar, with deliveries expected to begin in by early 2023. However, with the car only limited to 2,500 units for a single-year production run, expect the order books to fill up quickly.