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Porsche has just unveiled the Cayman GT4 and the Spyder and will take a spot at the top of the 718 line up. Both cars will be powered by the same engine and will share a lot of components across the board. These cars essentially do away with the small flat-four in the 718 Cayman and Boxster, replacing it with a naturally aspirated flat-six derived from the current generation 911.
Both cars use the same engine. That is, a naturally aspirated 4-litre, six-cylinder boxer engine that has been derived from the current gen 911 Carrera. The engine is mated to a six-speed manual transmission, you cannot spec these cars with a PDK or automatic gearbox. The engine puts down 414bhp of power at 7600rpm and 420Nm of torque at 5000-6800rpm and has a considerably high rev ceiling at 8000rpm. The GT4 and the Spyder make 35bhp and 45bhp respectively, more than their predecessors. The claimed top speed of the GT4 is 304kmph while the Spyder has a claimed 301kmph. The 0-100kmph times for both cars are identical at 4.4 seconds. Both the cars tip the scales at 1,420kg (dry weight).
The new Cayman GT4 has up to 50 percent extra downforce due to its new designs and Porsche claims that this downforce does not come at the cost of increased drag. The Cayman GT4 comes fitted with a fixed spoiler that produces 20 percent more downforce than its predecessor. This results in additional downforce of 12kg at 200kmph. The Spyder, however, has a rear spoiler that automatically comes up at 120kmph. Majority of the extra downforce on both model comes courtesy of the redesigned single chamber arch rear silencer which makes space for a functional diffuser. And that translates to roughly 30 percent more downforce for the Cayman GT4 at the rear axle.
The chassis on the Cayman GT4 and the Spyder are the same and use lightweight spring strut front and rear axles and its direct connection to the chassis is partly due to the use of ball joints. The Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM) with damping system and 30 mm lower suspension result in a lower centre of gravity. The cars also get Porsche Stability Management (PSM) with revised sensitivity and can also be turned off. Apart from this, they get Porsche Torque Vectoring (PTV) along with a mechanical rear differential lock. The GT4 comes with the optional Clubsport package which includes a rear steel roll bar, a handheld fire extinguisher and a six-point seatbelt for the driver’s seat.
Braking components on both variants are also same and they get a large aluminium monobloc fixed-calliper set up which should provide consistent performance. Also available as an option is the Porsche Ceramic Composite Brake (PCCB). The cars also get tyres that have been designed specifically for them
All the updates have resulted in the Cayman GT4 being ten seconds quicker than its predecessor at the Nürburgring Nordschleife.
The engine has features like adaptive cylinder control which, when the car is on part-load operation, temporarily interrupts the injection process in one of the two cylinder banks to reduce the amount of fuel consumed. In addition, there are piezo injectors that split each injection process into five individual injections which results in complete combustion.
The Porsche Cayman GT4 and Spyder finally have an alternative to the puny four-pot turbo and have given the balanced chassis a far more deserving engine. The fact that they are only available as manuals means Porsche is once again, focusing on the driving experience and not outright performance with these models. Does that leave room for a full blown RS model in the future? We certainly hope so!
Words by Karan Ramgopal