EXPECTED TO ARRIVE in late 2011 or early 2012, the next generation Porsche 998 911 Carrera Cabriolet has been spied undergoing cold-weather testing this week.
Sporting decals designed to look like the side air-intakes of the Turbo model, along with a built-up rear-end disguise, the spied prototype features steeper-angled headlights and what looks to be a slightly longer body.
New pedestrian protection rules in the EU are expected to result in slight changes to the 998's nose (mostly beneath the surface); alterations to the rear end for improved aerodynamics are also expected.
Porsche's Head of Research and Development, Wolfgang Dürheimer, described the upcoming 998 Carrera as "... even more competent, even sexier, even more unique".
"The design can of course only be evolutionary, but beneath the skin, almost anything is possible," he said.
Porsche has let nothing slip on what to expect for the next generation 911's engine line-up, but minimal updates - for efficiency and emissions - to the existing range is the most likely course.