Certified Benz & Beemer Compares 2015 Porsche 911 VS 2015 Ferrari California Near Scottsdale, AZ

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2015 Porsche 911

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VS

2015 Ferrari California

Safety Comparison

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The 911 has standard head airbag curtains which act as a forgiving barrier between the driver and front passenger's upper bodies and the window and pillars. Combined with high-strength steel door beams and lower side airbags this system increases head protection in broadside collisions. The California T doesn't offer side airbag protection for the head.

The 911 offers optional Porsche Active Safe, which use forward mounted sensors to warn the driver of a possible collision ahead. If the driver doesn’t react and the system determines a collision is imminent, it automatically applies the brakes at full-force in order to reduce the force of the crash or avoid it altogether. The California T doesn't offer collision warning or crash mitigation brakes.

The 911 offers all-wheel drive to maximize traction under poor conditions, especially in ice and snow. The California T doesn’t offer all-wheel drive.

Both the 911 and the California T have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control and electronic stability systems to prevent skidding.

Warranty Comparison

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The 911 comes with a full 4 year/50,000 mile basic warranty, which covers the entire car and includes 24 hour roadside assistance. The California T’s 3 year/100,000 mile basic warranty expires 1 year sooner.

The 911’s corrosion warranty is 7 years and unlimited miles longer than the California T’s (10/unlimited vs. 3/100,000).

There are almost 8 times as many Porsche dealers as there are Ferrari dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the 911’s warranty.

Reliability Comparison

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J.D. Power and Associates rated the 911 first among midsize premium sporty cars in their 2013 Initial Quality Study. The California T isn’t in the top three in its category.

Engine Comparison

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The 911 Turbo S’ standard 3.8 turbo 6 cyl. produces 7 more horsepower (560 vs. 553) than the California T’s 3.9 turbo V8.

The flat cylinder configuration of the boxer engine in the 911 lowers its center of gravity, enhancing handling stability. The California T doesn’t offer a boxer engine configuration.

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

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On the EPA test cycle the 911 Cabriolet gets better fuel mileage than the California T:

911

California T

RWD

Base/Manual

19 city/27 hwy

n/a

S/Manual

19 city/27 hwy

n/a

Base/Auto

21 city/28 hwy

16 city/23 hwy

S/Auto

19 city/27 hwy

n/a

AWD

Base/Manual

19 city/26 hwy

n/a

S/Manual

18 city/26 hwy

n/a

Base/Auto

20 city/27 hwy

n/a

S/Auto

19 city/26 hwy

n/a

Turbo/Auto

17 city/24 hwy

n/a

Turbo S/Auto

17 city/24 hwy

n/a

Regenerative brakes improve the 911’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The California T doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.

The 911 GT3’s optional fuel tank has 3.1 gallons more fuel capacity than the California T (23.7 vs. 20.6 gallons).

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

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For better stopping power the 911 Turbo/GT3’s optional brake rotors are larger than those on the California T:

911 Turbo/GT3

California T

Front Rotors

16.1 inches

15.4 inches

Rear Rotors

15.4 inches

14.2 inches

In an emergency stopping situation, many drivers don’t press the brakes with enough force to stop the vehicle in the shortest distance. The 911 has a standard brake assist system to detect emergency braking situations (by how hard and how quickly the brake pedal is pressed) and then automatically apply maximum braking immediately in order to help prevent a collision. The California T doesn’t offer a brake assist feature.

The 911 stops much shorter than the California T:

911

California T

70 to 0 MPH

135 feet

151 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

93 feet

100 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels Comparison

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The 911’s standard 285/35R19 rear tires provide better handling because they have a lower 35 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the California T’s standard 40 series tires. The 911’s optional 295/30R20 rear tires have a lower 30 series profile than the California T’s optional 35 series tires.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

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The 911 offers active sway bars, which help keep it flat and controlled during cornering, but disconnect at lower speeds to smooth the ride. This helps keep the tires glued to the road. The California T doesn’t offer an active sway bar system.

The 911 S Cabriolet handles at 1.03 G’s, while the California T pulls only .91 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

The 911 S Cabriolet goes through Road & Track’s slalom 2.1 MPH faster than the California T (71.3 vs. 69.2 MPH).

Chassis Comparison

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The Porsche 911 may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 300 to 750 pounds less than the Ferrari California T.

The 911 is 3.1 inches shorter than the California T, making the 911 easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

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The 911’s standard folding rear seats are split to accommodate bulky cargo. The California T’s standard single piece folding rear seat is not as flexible; long cargo and a passenger can’t share the rear seat.

Ergonomics Comparison

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The 911’s instruments include an oil pressure gauge and a temperature gauge – which could save your engine! Often ‘idiot lights’ don’t warn you until damage has been done. The California T does not have an oil pressure gauge.

The 911’s standard power window controls are mounted on the armrest for easy access. The California T’s available power window controls are spread out on the center console where they can’t be seen without the driver completely removing his eyes from the road.

Heated windshield washer nozzles are standard on the 911 to prevent washer fluid and nozzles from freezing and help continue to keep the windshield clear in sub-freezing temperatures. The California T doesn’t offer heated windshield washer nozzles.

The 911’s optional air conditioned front seats cool the driver and front passenger and help take the sting out of hot leather in Summer. The California T doesn’t offer air conditioned front seats.

On extremely cold Winter days, the 911’s optional heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the car heater warms up. The California T doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.

To keep a safe, consistent following distance, the 911 PDK offers an optional Adaptive Cruise Control, which alters the speed of the vehicle without driver intervention. This allows the driver to use cruise control more safely without constantly having to disengage it when approaching slower traffic. The California T doesn’t offer an adaptive cruise control.

Optional Online Services for the 911 allows the driver and passengers access to select programs on their smartphones, including playing internet radio stations, searching the internet and other connected activities without taking their eyes off the road or their hands from the wheel. The California T doesn’t offer factory integrated smartphone program access.

Recommendations Comparison

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J.D. Power and Associates rated the 911 first among midsize premium sporty cars in owner reported satisfaction. This includes how well the vehicle performs and satisfies its owner’s expectations. The California T isn’t in the top three.

The 911 was chosen as one of Automobile Magazine’s “All Stars” for 6 of the last 19 years. The California T has never been an “All Star.”

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