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Taking The 996 On Its First Rally

Taking The 996 On Its First Rally

By Rawad Sleem | @itsrawadsleem

The best moments for any Porsche Enthusiast

 Honestly, Porsche owners are like no other. You don’t see other sports car clubs doing what Porsche clubs do. If you own any Porsche, SUV, Boxster, whatever it is, get into a club and go on a rally. It's an experience you won't regret and one you'll want to do much more often.

The Car

The car I own is a 2001 Porsche Carrera 4. The vehicle's highlights are the factory Gt3 Aero Kit, BBS Sport Rims, the five-digit paint code, and its 4WD. This is my first Porsche and certainly not my last. Purchased in September of 2022, I honestly have no regrets. The 996, in my opinion, is still significantly undervalued. People tend to criticize the 996 because of the headlights; understandably, a 911 should have round headlights. However, that doesn't mean the 996 is not a 911. It's still the same raw, aggressive, and sleek Porsche Carrera we know and love. The funny thing is, I met a gentleman on the day of the rally; he owned a 991; However, he told me he missed the visceral driving experience of his old 996.

Leading Up To The Rally

I wouldn’t want to lie, so ill have to start with this. On the way to the meet-up spot, I was honestly pretty nervous. First, I had a feeling I would be the youngest guy there (which I was). Second, I owned the least desirable generation of the 911. I was worried I was about to meet a bunch of car snobs who were just there to show off.

Once I got there, to my surprise, the lot was full of all kinds of Porsche. Boxsters, Mecans, a handful of 996s, 997s, etc. It was a melting pot of Porsches, and I was welcomed right in. My car was pretty appreciated by the other owners. The Boxster engine sounded great because of the muffler bypass I installed, the factory aero kit was one of few there, and the whole team was just super positive. It was a group of guys who loved Porsche and loved driving, and that was it.

A few of the cars on the rally

The Rally Course and Drive

This wasn't one of the more significant rallies the PCA held. It was right under 3 hours on the back roads of Eastern Virginia. The road was mapped perfectly, with about 60 Porsche in attendance split into five groups. We had a few photo-op spots and one gas station checkpoint before our destination at a restaurant we would all meet at.

One of many photos taken during the drive
It is fun taking the car out by myself over the weekend for a drive, but it's a different experience when you have a few other guys who are just as passionate as you, hitting the road together. The roads we took were tight and full of sharp turns, hills, and wavy backroads. Having a Carrera 4 made it all the better; luckily, I was closer to the front of the pack, so I ch a few other Carrera S 997s in front of me. The 4WD helped big time and let me rip around the bends and the turns, which was great.

The great thing was that the rally wasn't just about the cars and the roads but also about the people and the relationships. The team I was with was local. They had gone on multiple runs, including PCA r and weekend drives. There were a bunch of laughs, moments, and really good times connecting with them. It was the best part of the whole day. 

In Conclusion

This rally was the start of it all that day. I was added to two groups and exchanged information with them, and I joined the PCA. I honestly can't wait for the next one, to be surrounded by like-minded enthusiasts once more on some of the most fun roads in the state.

The final stretch of the drive with a very scenic bridge and pond

Now I understand what it means to own a Porsche, and I appreciate my 996 so much more because of it. Seeing different people and cars together enjoying a drive was terrific. 

I can now confirm there is no other group of enthusiasts like Porsche Enthusiasts!

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