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25 Years of the 996: A Look at Today’s “Entry Level” 911

We examine Porsche's first water-cooled production 911

25 Jahre Porsche 996

The Porsche 996

There’s nothing really “entry level” about a Porsche 911 as a whole, and the 996-generation is responsible for producing—and even ushered in—a variety of range-topping 911 variants. Yet, due to its place in the history books, the 996 cars are widely considered to be the first stepping stone in water-cooled Porsche 911 ownership, if not 911 (or P-car) ownership in a broader sense. As we celebrate 25 years since the birth of the 996-generation Porsche 911, let’s take a look back to its creation and how it was received, then showcase why there’s a growing number of enthusiasts who have developed a soft spot for these cars.

Out with the (Beloved) Old, In with the (Unknown) New

The 996-generation represented a complete overhaul of the 911 model lineup which defined the Porsche brand for so many years. To truly start anew, the past had to be demolished, and the blueprint for the 996 certainly embodied this philosophy—a renaissance, if you will. That idea was always going to be controversial on its own merits, and certainly came with pushback from some of Porsche’s most diehard loyalists (aka purists) before the first example even rolled off the assembly line.

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