You can't do an awful lot in 3.4 seconds. It's such a tiny sliver of time you barely have chance to react to it starting before its finished. You don't have time to say very much, or do very much, and even if you're Usain Bolt you can't run very far. In 3.4 seconds you would be hard pressed even to read all of this sentence.

Equip yourself with a Porsche 911 Turbo, and suddenly 3.4 seconds becomes far more useful. Like every 911 since the first of the breed in 1963 this latest Turbo has a flat-six engine mounted at the rear, in this case an all-aluminium 3.8-litre unit with a variable-geometry turbocharger. In our test car the 493bhp it develops is fed through Porsche's excellent PDK twin-clutch gearbox, which provides the efficiency of a manual gearbox with the ease of use of an automatic. Add the optional Sport Chrono package, which gives you an automatic 'launch control' and an overboost function for even more mid-range power, and the 911 Turbo will sprint from rest to 62mph (100km/h) in – of course – just 3.4 seconds.

That makes the 911 Turbo one of the fastest accelerating road cars money can buy. Make no mistake, it is very, very fast. But the measure of its ability is that it is utterly docile if you drive in a sensible fashion. It's easy to manoeuvre, easy to see out of, beautifully made and a doddle to park. If performance without fuss is your goal, the Porsche 911 Turbo has to be on your 'test drive' list.