The Knockhill Racing Circuit is a 30-minute drive northwest from Edinburgh, Scotland, and is surrounded by sheep-filled grazing fields. Primarily based on the encircling countryside and monitor map, Knockhill does not seem to be an excessive amount of of a problem, however romping round “Scotland’s nationwide motorsport heart” in a 2020 Porsche Cayman GT4 proves in any other case. The 1.Three-mile, 9-turn highway course retains you in your toes with tight turns and elevation modifications. It is a severe race monitor finest tackled in a severe monitor automotive. Fortunately, that is precisely what the brand new Cayman GT4 is.
After a sluggish and regular recognizance lap behind an teacher in a 911 GT3 RS, it is time for my scorching laps. Flooring the GT4’s throttle out of the hairpin onto the entrance straight causes its new, four.Zero-liter, naturally aspirated flat-six engine to belt out some pretty sounds, working as much as its Eight,000-rpm redline. The soundtrack is not fairly as ear-pleasing because the higher-pitch scream of the GT3, however not many engines come near matching these riveting noises. It certain beats the four-cylinder drone from different Cayman fashions, anyway.
Like within the 718 Spyder, with which the GT4 shares its mechanicals, the engine has a stop-start system and cylinder deactivation, too.
I’ve no complaints concerning the engine’s 414 horsepower and 309 pound-feet of torque. It betters the 2016 Cayman GT4’s Three.Eight-liter mill by 29 horsepower and is related completely to a slick-shifting, six-speed guide gearbox, making the individual behind the wheel really feel like an integral a part of the driving expertise. From a standstill, Porsche says the brand new GT4 accelerates to 60 miles per hour in four.2 seconds and can prime out at 188 mph if given sufficient house.
The elective carbon-ceramic brakes kill velocity in a flash, and happening a gear earlier than getting into a flip is a cinch, due to the GT4’s automated rev-matching function. Need to heel-and-toe for your self? No drawback — rev-matching might be disabled with the contact of a button.
One other main piece of the GT4 puzzle is its upgraded chassis elements, which have been poached from the 911 GT3. The adaptive shock absorbers, management arms, ball joints and subframes are taken straight from the hard-core 911. In comparison with the bottom Cayman, the GT4 sits greater than an inch nearer to the bottom, for a decrease heart of gravity.
The GT4 borrows quite a few suspension items from its 911 GT3 massive brother.
Observe rats may even recognize the power to regulate the GT4’s toe, camber and the antiroll bars. A mechanical, limited-slip, torque vectoring rear differential, new stability management tuning and sticky, 20-inch Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires full the dealing with alterations.
With the suspension within the Regular setting, there’s some preliminary lean getting into corners and a few physique roll via Knockhill’s chicane. However make no mistake, the GT4 is remarkably agile, with responsive steering and powerful grip. The automotive does not thoughts bouncing off an apex curb, both. Punching the dampers into Sport mode tightens issues up, making the Cayman really feel a bit extra keen to show in, change instructions, and cling on tight via the excessive velocity bends.
Attacking Knockhill’s tight hairpin flip with an excessive amount of enthusiasm causes the GT4’s entrance tires to scrub out, nevertheless it’s simple to assemble issues up and nonetheless energy via shortly. Round the remainder of Knockhill’s various turns, the GT4 does every part you inform it to with out fuss. The GT4 by no means throws you any curveballs with its dealing with. It is an absolute thrill, and completely predictable.
Using the curbs is not any drawback within the 718 Cayman GT4.
Due to the grey, wet skies in Scotland, my monitor time includes a couple of moist laps, which do not upset the GT4 as a lot as you would possibly suppose. Credit score the Michelin tires for his or her wonderful grip in these circumstances; it is good to know the GT4 does not change into a handful ought to a rain cloud put a damper in your day.
Type and performance
The GT4 will get a brand new entrance fascia with bigger air dams, a revised lip spoiler, new heart air outlet and aspect air curtains up entrance. Round again, there is a mounted, manually adjustable wing with built-in aspect plates, and useful rear diffuser. Not readily seen is closed underbody paneling. All of this leads to a 50% enchancment in downforce in comparison with the previous GT4.
Inside, the GT4 might be accessible with a couple of seating choices within the US, starting from a typical, two-way sport seat to $5,900 carbon-fiber buckets. Sadly, US rules prevents the factory-installed roll bar function from coming stateside, however we do get a wholesome serving to of Alcantara protecting the steering wheel, seat inserts, door panel armrests and headliner. Brushed aluminum on the sprint and heart console trim can be normal.
The carbon fiber bucket seats will lock you down in place, however they’re going to price you $5,900.
The Porsche Communication Administration infotainment system makes use of a 7-inch touchscreen, and each US-spec GT4 will get this tech. (Consumers in different nations can spec a multimedia-free heart stack.) The GT4 comes with an eight-speaker sound system, satellite tv for pc radio, Bluetooth and two USB shops. Navigation, a Wi-Fi hotspot, a Bose audio setup, wi-fi charging pad and Apple CarPlay are elective. As with each Porsche, Android Auto continues to be a no-go.
An improved monitor star
After driving the brand new Porsche Cayman GT4 on monitor, it is clear that is an involving and vastly succesful machine. With out driving them again to again, it is onerous to quantify precisely how a lot better of a automotive it’s over its predecessor — in spite of everything, the earlier GT4 was a excessive benchmark in its personal proper. Porsche does remind me that the brand new GT4 will lap the Nürburgring Nordschleife in 7 minutes and 28 seconds, which is 12 seconds faster than the final GT4. In truth, the brand new GT4 is four seconds faster than the 2004 Carrera GT supercar, for no matter that is value.
The 2020 Porsche Cayman GT4 arrives within the US quickly with a base value of $99,200, not together with $1,350 for vacation spot. Deliveries are anticipated to start subsequent spring. This makes it $18,500 dearer than the wonderful Cayman GTS, however in case you’re shopping for a Porsche 718 for monitor responsibility, it’s best to completely splurge for the GT4. Belief me, you will not remorse it.
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