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Ranking 20 Porsche Generations by Reliability

Sorting models by their generation gives us a clearer picture of common problems across a group of similar vehicles. From there, we can assign scores to each generation to give you a basic picture of which to consider and those to avoid. The higher the score, the faster you should run away.

Rank Model Gen Years PainRank (?)
20th Cayenne Gen 2 2011–2016 4.02
19th Boxster Gen 1 1997–2004 3.21
18th Cayenne Gen 1 2003–2010 2.56
17th Carrera GT Gen 1 1.41
16th Panamera Gen 1 2010–2016 1.41
15th 911 Gen 1 1969–1983 1.15
14th Boxster Gen 3 2013–2016 0.69
13th 911 Gen 6 2012–2016 0.59
12th 911 Gen 5 2005–2011 0.42
11th Boxster Gen 2 2005–2012 0.34
10th 911 Gen 4 1999–2004 0.32
9th 944 Gen 1 0.29
8th Cayenne Hybrid Gen 2 2011–2014 0.29
7th Cayman Gen 1 0.25
6th 918 Spyder Gen 1 0.0
5th 911 Gen 2 1990–1994 0.0
4th Panamera Hybrid Gen 1 2012–2013 0.0
3rd 911 Gen 3 1995–1998 0.0
2nd Cayman Gen 2 0.0
1st Macan Gen 1 2015–2017 0.0

Answers to the most frequently asked questions

What Are Vehicle Generations?

Generations are groups of model years where the vehicles are continuously produced, use similar engineering, and share features. Generational data is not always cut-and-dry – manufacturers might not always release generation information, some generations might last longer in different countries, and various trim levels and model variants can make the whole thing confusing. We do our best but make no guarantees about our generation data. When in doubt, we stick with data about US models.

Why Are Some Vehicles Missing a 1st / 2nd / 3rd Generation?

You might notice that some of our data starts at generation 5, 6, etc. So what happened to the older generations? One of two things. 1. some models have been around a long time and we don’t have any complaint or NHTSA data about them. 2. some new models share the same platform as existing models, so we typically tie them together. For instance, a new hybrid vehicle might be introduced during the 5th generation of its non-hybrid counterpart. We’ll typically start the hybrid’s generation at 5, unless it’s otherwise noted.

What is PainRank™? Where Does it Come From?

PainRank™ is a CarComplaints.com algorithm that uses complaint data from owners (the average mileage of failures, the cost to make repairs, etc), relative complaints analysis, sales numbers, NHTSA data, & owners’ own vehicle rankings to come up with a number representing how much pain a car inflicts on its owners. The higher the PainRank™ score, the more painful a car is to own (typically).