It’s Thursday and there isn’t a soul in the area. People must be at work, fighting with their computers or attending the umpteenth meeting of the week. But I, to justify my salary, I had to come for a walk in the Sierra de Guadarrama in a Porsche cayman gt4. It’s atmospheric, manual, and in danger of extinction. Life offers you great opportunities.
Crossing Madrid from north to south with the anti-pollution alert has been frustrating. Fighting not to exceed seventy kilometers per hour in the Madrid M30 aboard a Cayman GT4 is a “brown” in every rule. It took so long to go full throttle that now I struggle to assimilate how fast the landscape around me is advancing.
The Porsche Cayman GT4 is much more than a new evolution of the more powerful Cayman. This is the first time a Cayman has received a “GT” preparation since Weissach. And that has very serious implications.
In the first place, because the nine-eleven is the Porsche “pretty girl” and nobody in Sttutgart conceived – some time ago – the idea of equipping the Cayman with certain skills that could overshadow the all-powerful 911. We have always insisted that the Cayman, with a more compact design and a centrally positioned engineHe had all the ballots to put him in serious trouble. However, although we all sensed the performance that the Cayman could achieve, its “capped” power was the solution to avoid the problem … until today.
This Cayman GT4 that I have in my hands, is the most powerful Cayman of all time. More powerful, faster and 8,500 euros cheaper than, for example, the new turbocharged 911 Carrera. The 99,094 euros They asked for him made it a real bargain.
You have read correctly when I have used a verb in the past: it torments me to think that production was limited to 2,500 units, which were sold within days. So it’s too late to get one. The lucky ones who have been able to do so have made an investment that will appreciate over the years. The GT4 sold out so quickly that it surprised even its detractors. The rest of us mortals – unlucky us – will have to go to the second-hand market.
It has a multitude of components that it borrows from its older brother, the Porsche 911 GT3, such as the front axle or the suspension. And right behind me is a six-cylinder boxer: is the 3.8 atmospheric of the previous 911 Carrera S lowered from 400 to 385 hp which, as you know, has just been replaced by a new supercharged drivetrain. In short: a jewel in danger of extinction.
The engine is only 7 kilos heavier than the 3.4 that we usually find in Porsche Caymans. Its greater displacement has required turning it 180 degrees and placing it in the opposite direction to the usual, as well as adding huge lateral gills to achieve a greater air intake and thus more efficiently cool the engine.
Facing the Morcuera pass from Miraflores de la Sierra involves climbing through the slope of the valley for ten kilometers. The road is not as narrow as the descent to Rascafría, but there is no dividing line in the center and I must be vigilant. There are bulls on the loose and some intrepid dealer in the classic white Kangoo.
On many occasions I have imagined what it would be like to drive a Porsche 911 964. And now driving this Cayman GT4, it is exactly the same as I have always suspected it would happen. Hard clutch, inflexible suspension, short travels, very mechanical and cacophonic sound … The Cayman GT4 is totally an old school one. And that makes it special.
Production was limited to 2,500 units, which were sold within days. So it’s too late to get one.
It sounds gutturally wonderful, much louder and more furious than a 911 Carrera Sbut not as much as the Porsche 911 GT3 we tested this summer. Next to the gear lever, there is a button to regulate the sound of the exhaust … but, as much as I press it over and over again, I find no difference.
The interior is entirely covered with alcantara, but it does not contain as many accessories as the exterior. It is very similar to any other Cayman. The most notable are the door opening handles, which have been replaced by textile straps to save weight; or the small steering wheel, of identical dimensions to those of the Porsche 918 Spyder.
The newest element in the cabin is… the gear lever! The Cayman GT4 only offers a superb manual gearbox – it’s the most delicious gear I’ve ever tried. The lever has been shortened an inch from the GTS to make it faster to operate, the travels are very short and the clutch pedal is very hard. It is uncomfortable to drive in the city, but its feel is inevitably reminiscent of a racing car.
I slide the gear stick forward and third gear seems to have no end. The first three relationships have very long developments. It never runs out of revs, and when I finally hit 7,800 laps, the road is about to end. Perhaps it could be a bit faster if it did not have such long developments, but from Porsche they explain this by saying that they do not want people to have to change during overtaking.
Its engine is the 3.8 atmospheric of the previous 911 Carrera S lowered from 400 to 385 hp, instead of the usual 3.4 of the Cayman
On the top of the port, the sun is pressing hard. At 1,795 meters, the Sierra de Guadarrama is marvelous. In the background Madrid and its pollution, “escorted” by pine and holm oak groves. The rise of the pass still keeps my tension running high, as I lean on the nightstand staring at the GT4.
The six-cylinder boxer in the Porsche Cayman GT4 resonates very hot behind me. His appearance is devastating, muscular and athletic. You can see that the design is so aggressive that it gives off a great circuit, trackday aroma. It has widened wheel arches, it has a new bumper, a very pronounced plastic front lip. At the back, there are two centrally positioned exhausts and a large fixed rear spoiler with aluminum supports, on a lower spoiler integrated into the bodywork. At Porsche, they say that this large spoiler produces 100 kilos of downforce at high speed.
To improve the aerodynamic grip of the front axle, the central air intake now directs the air stream through a new upward outlet opening, located in front of the boot. Its size has grown as well. It has gained 13 mm in width to be able to couple the front axle of the 911 GT3. The Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 with 20-inch wheels are so large that they look like they are pressed into the wheel arches. There is hardly any room for them. A sensation also increased thanks to the suspension, which it has been lowered in height by 30 millimeters to achieve a lower center of gravity.
Going down to Rascafría, the road winds even more. There are twelve kilometers of descent with a slope of 7% in some sections and an intoxicating landscape. Suddenly, the asphalt begins to narrow more and more and the curves follow one after another, while the steering turns my movements into precise trajectories.
There is no trace of understeer. The effectiveness is very high and the Cayman GT4 dispatches each turn without hesitation. It is a privilege that Porsche continues to delight us with vehicles of this charisma, which involve you in driving and make you feel absolutely integrated. There are few sports cars that allow you to interact with them.
I press the Sport button on the dashboard and then the toe-heel function so that, when we downshift, it automatically hits the gas, allowing us to get out of turns faster, while punishing the rear wheels with 420 Nm of torque.
“”The Cayman GT4 only offers a superb manual gearbox – it’s the most delicious gear I’ve ever tried””
The floor is damp in some cold shady areas, but the pace that this Cayman GT4 reaches is unspeakable. Tires are stitched at every turn, as your insides swing violently from side to side.
The brakes are identical to the 911 Carrera S, but they bite poorly at the start. I do not know if it is a problem with our unit, or is it extensible to all GT4, but it is something that does not convince me. I would have preferred something more radical since it is a clearly improvable aspect. Of course, there are the optional carboceramics, which cost just over 8,300 euros. In any case, the standards should be more effective. At least in 911 they look better.
The eternity of curves are lost towards the horizon while the suspension does not rock the slightest, not even in the tightest forks. And that there is a second “sport” mode so that the cushioning is even firmer. It takes time to discover the additional advantages in drive and agility. In fact, it is not until after 4000 laps that this GT4 begins to make a difference. The 3.8 has 385 hp and does the 0 to 100 km / h in 4.4 seconds, a figure identical to that of a whole Porsche 911 GTS, like the one we tested on this same road a few months ago.
The engine has 45 hp less than the 911 GTS, but it is equal in performance, such as acceleration or torque. The great advantage is that the Cayman GT4 is capable of reaching the maximum power regime faster. The GT4 also feels more stable and inspires more confidence. It feels smaller, lighter and with a different focus. This is not a benevolently updated Cayman to optimize road handling, but takes an extreme approach to the track.
The sun begins to set and the temperature drops drastically, so we give up for today and return to Madrid to finish a night photo while we recall the experiences that the day has brought us.
Only. And more powerful, faster and cheaper than the new turbocharged 911 Carrera
I have to tell you that It is not a car to use every day. The suspension is firm, the clutch pedal is excessively hard, and the front spoiler rubs at almost any speed bump. In addition, it does not offer the optional GT3 system to raise the front axle for easy access to garages. Okay, it’s more squeezable than the 911 GT3, but less dramatic. The GT3 remains the purest, the most special and challenging. The 9,000 laps that its engine turns have nothing to do with the 7,800 of the Cayman GT4.
To its credit, I must confess that the Cayman GT4 is a unique and wonderful vehicle. Its price of 99,094 euros is exceptional for a car of “reduced production” that will appreciate over time. It is 8,500 euros cheaper than a 911 Carrera and is far above in performance but, above all, in sensations and entertainment. No posturing.
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