Porsche Targa History: Then and Now

August 31st, 2020 by

2020 Porsche 911 Targa 4

Introduced in 1965 at the International Motor Show in Frankfurt, the Porsche Targa offered an innovative design and features that changed the automotive game, and the whole Porsche lineup going forward. Not quite a coupe, not quite a cabriolet, the Targa offered a new kind of vehicle- a safety cabriolet. Learn more about the history of the Porsche Targa, as well as its current iteration, with Porsche Fremont below. 

Porsche Targa: Innovation in Design

With the introduction of the Targa, Porsche added a fixed safety or roll bar to the top of the vehicle. This was a smart response to the growing sentiment for open topped cars to be banned in the United States. Introducing the roll bar not only increased the safety of the Targa, it also allowed for a different top-down experience thanks to the options it provided drivers, including:

  • Closed completely
  • Fully open
  • Center roof section removed
  • Rear window folded down 

These options are made possible by the fold-down rear plastic window and the removable folding roof.

Porsche Targa: What’s in a Name?

When naming this revolutionary vehicle, the creators looked to a place that Porsche had achieved much success– the Targa Florio road race held in Sicily. While the name, “911 Tagra” had been tossed around, Head of Domestic Sales Harald Wagner was the one who suggested just using the name “Targa.” Afterwards, the legend goes, copywriters found that Targa was also the Italian word for, “number plate.”

Continued Porsche 911 Targa Updates

The Porsche 911 Targa continued to evolve to meet consumer needs and lead the market with innovative features. Some modifications made throughout the years include:

  • 1967 – Optional fixed & heated rear window introduced in 1967. This became a standard feature a year later and remained unchanged until 1993.
  • 1973 – The Targa G-Series models were introduced in 1973 and featured updated box-shaped bumpers, black side bellows, and an available black version of the roll bar. These models remained a constant until the end of the G-Series in 1989. 
  • 1988 – In 1988, the first all-wheel version of the 911 was introduced. While the vehicle maintained its classic look, it contained about 85% new parts. A class rear-wheel drive model was re-introduced a year later, with models available until 1993.
  • 1995 – The Targa took a different direction in 1995 with the iconic roll bar being replaced by a longitudinal safety structure and a roof made of tinted heat-insulating glass. Thanks to moving segments, drivers were able to retract the roof behind the rear window with the simple push of a button. This provided a quieter ride that has continued to be part of the Targa. 
  • 2001 – The redesigned Porsche 911 Targa boasted a water-cooled six-cylinder boxer engine and a rear window that could be folded up for easy storage access. The glass roof had also increased to 16 cubic feet of glass– more than had ever been offered on a Porsche 911 model. 
  • 2006 – A lighter glass reduced the weight of the Targa by 4 pounds, a practical rear lid was added, and Porsche 911 Targa now also included two all-wheel drive interactions; the 911 Targa 4 and the 911 Targa 4S.
  • 2014 – The introduction of the 7th generation of the Porsche 911 Targa saw a modern take on the classic Porsche Targa design. The wide bar made a return, but it combined with a rear wrap-around window and a roof over the front seats and could retract by pressing a button. 

Porsche 911 Targa: A Modern Machine

The modern-day Porsche Targa for sale includes all the power and style Los Gatos and Saratoga shoppers would want. Features and specs for the new Porsche 911 Targa include impressive standard features like:

  • 3.0-liter twin-turbocharged boxer 6
  • 379 hp and 331 lb-ft of torque
  • Standard top speed of 179 mph
  • PDK transmission
  • 4-way sport seats
  • 2+2 seating configuration
  • Targa bar in Aluminum with “targa” logo in High Gloss Silver

See the Porsche Targa for Sale in Fremont

Drive a piece of history with the conveniences of the future when you test out a new Porsche 911 Targa at Porsche Fremont. We’ll help you into a new Porsche Targa for sale at a price you’ll be happy with.

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