Published on February 4th, 2015 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez0
Porsche finally unveils Cayman GT4
The rumour mills have been churning for the past few years. Talk of a high-end Cayman, one designed with the same kind of focus and purpose as Porsche’s 911 GT3s and GT2s- soon followed by numerous spy shots of a camouflage-clad Cayman bombing along the infamous Nurburgring. Well the wait is over, here it is: the all-new Cayman GT4.
Long has it been theorised that the Cayman would be easily capable of besting it’s 911 brother if given enough power and the right chassis components. To a certain extent this theory is proven: according to Porsche, the new Cayman GT4 sets a Nurburgring lap time of just 7 minutes and 40 seconds, which is on par with a 997 GT3. Certainly quite an impressive time for the miniature mid-engined sports car.
There was a certain measure of hope for the Cayman GT4 to be force inducted, but sadly it was not to be. Instead the Cayman GT4 gets a naturally aspirated 3.8-litre flat 6 engine that beats to the tune of 385 hp, roughly 85 hp more than the standard Cayman S. It also produces a staggering 420 Nm, propelling the car to 100 km/h in just 4.2 seconds. Purists should rejoice for Porsche only offers the Cayman GT4 with one transmission option: a 6-speed manual. It’s a breath of fresh air, given that Porsche only offers the 911 GT3 with their PDK dual clutch gearbox- quick without a doubt, but lacking a certain degree of involvement.
Suspension and chassis components for the Cayman GT4 are borrowed heavily from the 911 GT3, with a revised ride height that’s 30 mm lower. It gives the Cayman GT4 a more aggressive stance and improves aerodynamics as well. The brakes are uprated to handle the extra power, but it’s the little things that count- wishbones are split to allow for camber adjustbility, the kind of features you want on a track machine.
In terms of looks, the Cayman GT4 is not flat-out aggressive compared to a regular Cayman. There are some changes here and there like larger air vents, but the most notable distinction for the GT4 model is the modest fixed wing on the rear. It changes the silhouette of the Cayman from a classic sleek mid-engined sports car to something sharper and more track focused. Options for the Cayman GT4 include carbon ceramic brakes and carbon fibre bucket seats amongst other things- small extras to give it an additional edge.
While the Cayman GT4 is certainly quite impressive, one can’t help but wonder why the power output was specifically detuned. The engine specifically produces 400 hp in 911 C2S guise, and Porsche should have beefed up cooling and lubrication systems for their GT4 model, meaning the Cayman GT4 should be able to produce more than 400 hp. Perhaps it’s a question of maintaining the balance between power and grip, or perhaps Porsche is once again handicapping the Cayman to maintain the 911’s superiority as a halo car. That’s a question that can only be answered by owners and enthusiasts.