The very saucy Porsche 911 3.2 Carrera Supersport (aka M491 TurboLook)

So I found my old Porsche website I did around sixteen years ago… Lots of waffle about Porsche 911 3.2 Carrera and especially my old 1988 911 SSE. Much loved and very regrettably sold when I left England…

My old Porsche website on CIX in the days of html websites and page counters

The Porsche 911 3.2 Carrera Supersport

…sometimes referred to as the Carrera SSE, or Carrera Turbo Look, or even Carrera Wide body. These should not be confused with the Carrera SE – Sport Equipment. This is different option based on the standard Carrera body shape.

Features of the M491 SuperSport Option
Turbo body (flared wheel arches front and rear)Turbo rear spoiler (the whale-tail)

Turbo wheels (245/45VR16 tyres on 9J x 16 rims at the back, 205/55VR16 tyres on 7J x 16 rims in front)

Turbo brakes – 4 pot callipers with 285mm & 290mm cross-drilled discs

Turbo suspension

Porsche describe it as the “turbo-look” which is the only reference to it in the Driver’s Manual. 

What about performance? 

No difference from the standard 3.2 Carrera. Remember the engine is the same, only the styling and brakes / suspension set-up differ. On the other hand, the SSE option adds a little weight and the flared arches (probably) increase wind resistance so I imagine that the absolute performance of a SuperSport is slightly down from the standard bodied 3.2 Carrera. But we may only be talking in the region of a tenth of a second in the 0-60 range. And of course, my viewpoint is that the improved suspension and braking more than make up for the loss of straight line acceleration. Anyway, 5.6 seconds is plenty fast enough for me.

How rare is it?

Here in the UK, SuperSport are very tricky to find. When I was hunting for mine, I generally found that in magazines advertising Porsches for sale there were maybe two or three SSE’s for every 50 Carreras. This is a real rough estimate but would suggest that something like 5% of Carreras sold between 1984-98 wore the M491 option.

Porsche Cars Great Britain do not maintain any record of options included in cars sold during this period, so may be we will never know! The Porsche Club of Great Britain did have a 911 SSE register at one stage but this (sadly) died out… I can only assume through lack of members?

Beginning with the 1984 models the turbo look was also made available for both the Targa and Cabriolet in addition to the Coupe.

  • E series (1984 model) Coupe only, ROW only
  • F series (1985 model) Coupe, Cabriolet, Targa, Exported to all countries
  • G series (1986) same as F series
  • H series same as G series
  • J series same as G series, production stopped September 1989.

The turbo look was also made available without front and rear spoilers.

Back in the Eighties the M491 option added about £11,000 to the £30,000 price of the standard 3.2 Carrera so total cost could be £41,000, whilst a 911 Turbo was around £46,000. Thinking about these figures a customer must have been extremely positive about wanting the turbo body without the turbo engine. He would be paying nearly the same price for it AND suffer a degradation in performance.

Then again, my personal view point is that I love the styling of the Turbo but am not really concerned with the Turbo itself. Having heard a number of stories regarding the 911 Turbo (930), it seems to me a truly awesome machine but with a definite sting in the tail. Something for daily driving? I’m not sure.. ask me next year! 😎

I would guess that when buying a used Supersport today around £2-4,000 of this price differential over an equivalent 3.2 Carrera still survives.

The 3.2 Carreras range from a low of about £10,000 to a high for the 1989 models of about £30,000 the coupes and targas tend to stay in the same price range while Cabriolets will add about £2,000 more than the coupes and the turbo look will usually add from £2,000 to £5,000 to the Carrera price.