A supercar is a fairly loosely defined street-legal luxury sports car. Also known as an exotic, a supercar is usually rare, striking in design, and is purpose-built with performance in mind. And indeed, some Porsches are supercars.
But not all of them though. The Porsche Cayenne is a luxury sports SUV, while the Cayenne certainly is fast, it’s not a supercar, not by a mile. The same story goes for the Macan, the Taycan, and the Panamera.
Porsche 911 models are a bit more conservative design-wise compared to a McLaren, Ferrari, or a Lamborghini. But they are as fast, sometimes even more purpose-built, and fairly rare. So some 911 models can be considered supercars.
The Boxster/Cayman platform is the definitive Porsche sports car platform, but it just is not exotic enough to be considered a supercar. On the opposite side of the spectrum, the Porsche 918 or the Carrera GT are supercars through and through.
The iconic 911 silhouette is unmistakable, and so is the essential recipe. The 911 has not changed all that dramatically over the last few decades, but the perception of the 911 certainly did. Long are the days when RUF had to get involved for Porsche to be fast, nowadays even the entry-level 911 is rapid.
And speed is an essential characteristic of a supercar. And some 911 models are capable of 200mph, and a 0-60mph time of 2.5 seconds. So it’s hard to say that the 911 is not a supercar, even though 911s offer fuss-free constant launch controls without any issue, some people still argue the supercar-ness of the 911.
The 911 GT product range, or the GT3, GT3RS, GT2, GT2RS models are extremely purpose-built. They offer a lightweight chassis, a naturally aspirated engine, impressive downforce figures, and they constantly hold world records on many different race tracks around the world.
As far as rarity is concerned, not all 911 models are limited, but for the limited ones, the demand is huge. Only a few 911 models are indeed limited in production, and such limitations are reflected in the price tag.
The Porsche Macan/Cayenne SUV models are not supercars. An SUV is hardly ever going to be a supercar because SUVs are purpose-built, but not for outright track/street performance.
They are too heavy, too big, and too unbalanced to offer performance levels comparable to a 911. And this is an inherent fact associated with all SUVs on the market, even the more extreme models like the Lamborghini Urus.
Even though you can get a 670hp Cayenne straight out of the factory, the impressive power figures only make sense in a straight line. Both the Cayenne and Macan models are far from exotic, even the top-tier Turbo models are fairly similar to a more regular model, and only an enthusiast can tell the difference.
And lastly, they are not rare, nor limited. Porsche sells tens of thousands of these per year, and whoever wants one can just go to the dealership and buy one. This is partly why a Cayenne/Macan SUV depreciates that much more than a 911 model.
Porsche 918/Carrera GT
The Porsche Carrera GT is a two-seater supercar made by Porsche from 2004 to 2007. The Carrera GT offers a racecar-derived min-mounted naturally aspirated V10 engine, a lightweight body, and it also looks like a true thoroughbred supercar.
The Carrera GT is slowly but surely becoming an icon of the automotive industry, and the values of Carrera GT models easily stretch into the $1M region. The Carrera GT is a through and through supercar, and hardly anyone would ever think otherwise.
The Porsche 918 Spyder is also a two-seater Porsche supercar, but the 918 is somewhat a modern version of the Carrera GT. The 918 offers a hybrid powertrain, a slippery body, and a bunch of racing-derived components.
Porsche only sold 918 Porsche 918s, and when the 918 was introduced, it was the most capable track-focused road car on the planet. Only the McLaren P1 and the Ferrari LaFerrari could ever compare. And the current value of an average 918 Spyder is easily above a million dollars as well.
What is the difference between a supercar and a hypercar?
A couple of years ago, the term ‘’hypercar’’ was starting to gain traction among supercar enthusiasts. While the term does not have a strict definition, a clear outline of the meaning of the word hypercar is now fairly understandable.
A hypercar is a supercar with the highest performance credentials. Usually, a car built by Bugatti or Koenigsegg, a hypercar costs well over a million dollars, is extremely limited in production, and incredibly desirable.
What is the difference between a sports car and a supercar?
A sports car is usually a fairly compact, 2-seater, nimble car that is designed for a quick response and maximum driver feedback. Sports cars are fast, but they are not rapid like most supercars are. A Porsche Cayman/Boxster is a definitive sports car, and all the characteristics of the Cayman/Boxster platform are essential for a sports car.
The difference is that a sports car is usually not limited, nor as fast as a supercar. A sports car is also usually that bit less expensive and less exotic. It’s all about the performance levels, a sports car is the least capable, followed by a supercar, and topped by a hypercar.
What are the drawbacks of a supercar?
Supercars are amazing. They are loved equally by children and rich adults, they are incredibly fun to drive, they look amazing and they sound amazing. But it’s not all sunshine when it comes to supercars because they are costly to buy, maintain and insure.
Furthermore, they are not as practical, nor efficient for longer journeys. Supercars are also sometimes a bit too loud and obnoxious and not everyone thinks that supercars are cool. Some might even argue that supercars are unnecessary and made for douchebags, but none can argue the driving experience and the thrill of owning such a special piece of automotive engineering.