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Is the Best Sport Coupe a Porsche, Jaguar, or Mercedes?

We tested a trio of the top ones for style, handling, speed, and comfort. Here’s how they stacked up.
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The Porsche 911 Carrera S Cabriolet, with its 420-horsepower rear-mounted six-­cylinder engine, connects to the road unlike any other model in the group. The rear-wheel drive and torque vectoring (which transfers power to each 20-inch wheel) create such a firm grip, you feel like you could drive up a wall. It’s an impression boosted by Porsche’s excellent paddle-shift technology, which is ultraresponsive and smooth as the Carrera slips through its seven gears. (Much of this technology is available on the Cayenne and Macan SUVs, too, which have outpaced the 911 in sales—last year Porsche sold about 9,000 911s, compared with more than 15,000 Cayennes.)

The exterior design of the Carrera, largely unchanged since the model was introduced in 1963, is relatively modest. Likewise, the interior luxury is restrained, with three perfectly round gauges stacked behind the steering wheel. The buttons on the center console are minimalist and intuitive, and the dashboard is clean and elegantly slim.