You Can Buy An Immaculate Porsche 911 C4S For The Price Of A Focus ST

Illustration for article titled You Can Buy An Immaculate Porsche 911 C4S For The Price Of A Focus ST

This is a Porsche 911. It has a 3.6 liter naturally aspirated engine. It also has all-wheel-drive and a 6-speed manual transmission. It's has all the look of a Turbo, without the complexity of forced induction. It's also immaculate with low miles, and thanks to sweet, sweet depreciation, it's available for the price of a fully loaded Ford Focus ST. Oh. Yes.

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Illustration for article titled You Can Buy An Immaculate Porsche 911 C4S For The Price Of A Focus ST

This 2004 Porsche 911 Carrera 4S is an automotive yardstick. Its 320 horsepower flat-6 engine delivers power to all 4 wheels via its 6-speed manual transmission, resulting in a 0-60 mile per hour time of 4.5 seconds and a quarter mile time in the 12-second range. It can easily blow the doors off nearly anything coming off the production line today.

Illustration for article titled You Can Buy An Immaculate Porsche 911 C4S For The Price Of A Focus ST

This car has had no accidents, and has 40,000 miles on it. It's practically freaking new. 10 years ago, it was the better part of $100,000 to buy. It has an alcantara headliner, all-leather dashboard, and metallic paint - all options that added up to around $5,000 in options when new. It's one of the most complete examples you can find on the market today.

Illustration for article titled You Can Buy An Immaculate Porsche 911 C4S For The Price Of A Focus ST

With Porsche 911 prices going through the roof and with some easily sourced parts helping with the car's reliability, this is the most modern Porsche you can get for this price, bar none. It's a solid entrance into the world of sports cars. Get it before someone else does.

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For more awesome performance values, check these out:

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Tavarish is the founder of APiDA Online and writes about buying and selling cool cars on the internet. He owns the world's cheapest Mercedes S-Class, a graffiti-bombed Lexus, and he's the only Jalopnik author that has never driven a Miata. He also has a real name that he didn't feel was journalist-y enough so he used a pen name and this was the best he could do.

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DISCUSSION

Color-Commentary
Color-Commentary

FWIW, I just test-drove a Fiesta ST ($26k sticker with Recaros) and owned a 996 C4S, and, no kidding, there's a case to be made for the Fiesta over the C4S even at price parity.

The C4S is very stiffly suspended, to the point that it's a liability on canyon roads, in most autocross situations, and at bumpier tracks (e.g. Buttonwillow). It's fast, but gearing and torque are such that not all horses report for duty at around-town speeds. The stock shifter is floppy, the interior and paint are disappointing compared to a 993 or 997, and the seats are - seriously - not as good as the Recaros in the Fiesta. I sold mine pretty quickly and don't miss it.

The Fiesta ST, however, felt like it was a fully-developed autocross and track day car right off the dealer lot. The shock damping is sublime, it pulls hard from low RPMs, and it changes direction with the enthusiasm of a methed-up chihuahua. I was test-driving with a friend who is actually in the market for a hot hatch, and I damn near bought it myself.