We’ve already seen a prototype thrash the last-gen 911 GT3’s Nürburgring time but here it is in full: the 2022 Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 RS. It’s the most hardcore 718 model so far and one that’ll also lap the ‘Ring a whole 23.6 seconds quicker than the non-RS 718 Cayman GT4. What a difference two little letters can make.
It accomplishes all of that thanks to a naturally-aspirated, 4.0-liter flat-six borrowed from the current 911 GT3 and GT3 Cup car sitting in the middle. Redlining at 9,000 rpm, it produces 493 horsepower and 331 pound-feet of torque in this application, which is 79 horses and 14 pound-feet more than the regular GT4. Like other modern RS Porsches, the GT4 RS is PDK-only but Porsche says its seven gears have been made shorter than those in the GT4. “Maddeningly tall gears” were a common complaint (one of the few) with that car and its drop-top Boxster Spyder twin.
Zero to 60 mph happens in just 3.2 seconds, a half-second sooner than the PDK-equipped GT4 and just as quick as the current-gen 911 GT3. Top speed also goes up to 196 mph.
Small ‘Ring times and big straight-line speed are far from the GT4 RS’s only focus, though, because Porsche is promising “maximum driving pleasure” with its ultra hunkered-down Cayman and a bunch of weight-saving, downforce-producing enhancements. Total curb weight has gone down by 49 pounds versus the normal GT4 to a total of 3,227 pounds. The front fenders and hood are made of carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic while lightweight glass is used for the rear window. The obligatory fabric interior door handles are, of course, also present.
The fixed swan-neck rear wing, like this car’s engine, is a 911 GT3 hand-me-down and contributes to a 25 percent increase in downforce over the GT4. Also helping to keep the GT4 RS planted to the earth is a ride 30 millimeters lower than the standard Cayman, a bespoke damper setup with tweaked spring rates and anti-roll bar rates, and 20-inch wheels with—a 718 Cayman-first—center locks.
An optional Weissach Package turns the frunk lid, intakes, airbox lid, mirror caps, and rear spoiler into carbon. It also throws in titanium exhaust tips and a Race-Tex-covered upper dashboard, plus it unlocks the option to pay Porsche even more money for those blue magnesium wheels.
Speaking of money, the 2022 Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 RS will start at $143,050 and reach U.S. dealers in the summer of next year.
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