First Launched: 1966 – Porsche 911 Targa
History: Targa is a semi-convertible car body style with a removable roof section and a full width roll bar behind the seats. The term was first used on the 1966 with the classic Porsche 911 Targa and the name, “Targa”, remains a registered trademark of Porsche AG. Porsche got the name “Targa” from the Targa Florino, a famous Sicilian road race. The word “Targa” means “number-plate” in Italian.
The Targa style roof opening became popular in the 1960s and 1970s, resulting from fears that the US Department of Transportation (DOT) may ban convertibles because of safety concerns for the occupants should a car overturn.
Over the years Porsche designs have varied. In 1996 the Porsche 993 Targa features a retractable glass roof a design continued on the 996 and 997 models. The glass roof retracted underneath the rear window revealing a large opening.
With the introduction and production of more recent 911, including the Type 991, Porsche decided to take the latest Targa in a different direction from that of the previous water-cooled Type 996/997 cars. The new car has somewhat returned to its earliest Targa roots by the utilizing of a solid roof panel spanning over the front seats which was mechanized for automated lift-away and storage under the rear glass roof, which itself is mechanized to lift up and out of the way as the roof panel is placed into its stowed position.
Photos by Porsche