The 1989 Porsche 944 S2 was a sports car with a 3-door hatchback coupe body that sold between 1982 and 1991. Porsche made this car as a replacement for the Porsche 924. The 924 was a lightweight, front-engine, rear-wheel-drive sports car powered by a Volkswagen/Audi-sourced four-cylinder. However, people were unhappy with the 924 model, which explains why Porsche made the 944 model. According to Jalopnik, Porsche enthusiasts complained that the 924 did not feel like a Porsche since its underpowered 2.0-liter engine only generated a horsepower of 110. Porsche used the 924 as inspiration but reworked the 944. The resulting car had improved suspension tuning and a larger 2.5-liter four engine under the car’s hood. Additionally, Porsche gave the car a wider, more hunkered down look by equipping it with bulging fender flares. Next, it received a larger, 911-inspired rubber rear wing, which people admitted looked much better than its replacement. Let’s delve into the features of this car.
The car uses liquid as the engine’s cooling system. A common misconception about liquid-cooled engines is that they can work with regular water. According to How a Car Works, water expands when it freezes, and that can lead to the bursting of the radiator. Therefore, a coolant is mixed with it to lower its freezing point. Typically, air-cooled engines are more widely used, but liquid-cooled engines are more advantageous. Unlike air-cooled engines, liquid-cooled engines do not overheat. Since the liquid remains in the engine throughout, the engine stays cool for long. Contrast that with air-cooled engines that have to trap air to use for cooling. Sometimes, they may not trap enough air hence more prone to overheating. Additionally, liquid-cooled engines are less noisy than air-cooled engines. The less noise is because they contain water jackets that act as sound-proof objects.
The type of drivetrain used for this car is rear-wheel drive. Rear-wheel drive sends power to the two back wheels. The powered wheels then propel the car forward. Since the front wheels do not get any power, they can freely maneuver the car. You may wonder if this drive type has any benefits since not all wheels receive power. Rear-wheel drive is actually superior to all other drivetrains. First, the drive type is effective in acceleration. It achieves this by transferring the car’s weight to the rear. The extra weight of the rear then increases the tires’ traction, which contributes to quick accelerations. Another advantage of rear-wheel drive is that it eliminates torque steer. Torque steer occurs when a car veers to one side due to heavy acceleration. This challenge tends to affect front-wheel drive (FWD) cars. With no torque steer, you can accelerate as much as you can without worrying about being pulled to the side.
This car has a wheelbase of 94.49 inches. According to The Vehicle Lab, the average wheelbase of a car is 114 inches, which means this car has a short wheelbase. There are a lot of benefits of this car’s short wheelbase. Having a short wheelbase means that the car is small. Due to its size, you can park it between small gaps left by cars. The gaps are usually due to double-parked cars. As a result, you will not have to ask the driver to move their double-parked vehicle. Also, its small size creates more space for other cars to park since they do not take up so much space in parking lots. Also, the car’s short wheelbase makes it very maneuverable. Due to its size, you can cross between lanes within a short time. Let us contrast this car with trucks since they have longer wheelbases. When a truck turns into the other lane, it will take some time since the driver must wait for the remaining parts of the truck to cross over. That means they cannot make sudden turns.
Its curb weight is 2,998 pounds, which makes the car one of the lightest ever. According to Bankrate, the average weight of a vehicle is 4,156 pounds, so you now understand how light the car is. Curb weight is perhaps the most overlooked feature, yet it improves your driving experience. Driving this lightweight car means you will improve the vehicle’s fuel efficiency. Since the car is light, you will only need less fuel to start the car since you will not use a lot of effort. That is, however, not the case with heavyweight cars. With heavyweight cars, you will struggle to move them, and that means you will use plenty of energy to move them. Due to the car’s weight, you will also accelerate faster. Since it requires minimal effort to move them, you will be able to move as quickly as you can with it.
The injection system used in this car is port fuel injection. In port injection, fuel is delivered to the engine directly into the cylinder head. After that, fuel is sprayed on the valve, which then generates some heat. The heat is used for further fuel atomization. Fuel atomization is a process whereby fuel is broken down into small bits. Its purpose is to promote more efficient combustion of fuel. Since most of the fuel is combusted, it does not release any of it as waste hence good for fuel economy. Besides improving fuel economy, port fuel injection offers high performance. When injected, it provides a cooling effect which means the engine stays cool at all times. As a result, the engine will be able to deliver high power.
One of the reasons the 1989 Porsche 944 S2 car has remained powerful is that Porsche listened to customer feedback. Most companies view customer complaints as unnecessary, yet they can be instrumental in improving the quality of their products. After listening to customers, Porsche was able to deliver a car that was powerful and also fuel-efficient. You can consider it ahead of its time since some of the technology it uses are popular today, e.g., port injection.