Porsche 911 (992) GT3-Revealed
Porsche, since its inception, has always been involved in various form of motorsport. Often their need to go racing has given birth to some amazing cars. In 1999, an automotive legend was born. Dubbed the GT3 after the FIA’s Group GT3 racing series, Porsche built a homologated road-going version of their 911 race car. Starting with the 996 generation, Porsche has given us a GT3 for every generation since, with the GT3 nameplate becoming synonymous with track-oriented, high performance driving.
The most recent iteration based on the 992 generation was recently launched after months of spy shots and rumours. The key stats and figures? 4.0 litre, flat-six naturally aspirated motor which revs all the way to a glorious 9000 rpm. It produces 375kW and 470NM of torque. The rear-mounted engine can be mated to either a 6-speed manual gearbox or a 7-speed PDK. 0-100km/h is done in either 3.4 (PDK) or 3.9 seconds (Manual). Top speed is 320km/h. More than enough for the track-day at Kyalami or Killarney. Pleasantly, weight is only 1435kg (with PDK). An ever so slight 5kg change from the 991.2 GT3.
While the numbers on paper may look similar to the outgoing 991.2 GT3, a lot has changed between generations. The suspension now features double wishbones at the front for the first time, borrowed from the 911 RSR racing car. This allows for greater mechanical grip at the front, improving handling. The tyres are 10mm wider front and rear, with the front sitting on 20-inch wheels, and the rear on 21’s. Rear-wheel steering is also available, which ensures greater stability at high speeds and improved agility at lower speeds. Braking is done by discs that measure 408mm in the front and 380mm at the rear. They are standard steel brakes, with the option of carbon ceramics.
Aerodynamics have seen a big change too, with the new swan-neck rear wing improving downforce by 50% in its standard-setting, although it is adjustable, allowing for up to 150% more downforce in its “Performance” setting. A more aggressive rear diffuser aids in providing more downforce. At the front, The GT3 features a carbon-fibre bonnet which features new “nostrils” vents, which along with a redesigned front splitter and bumper (which mimics that on the 911 RSR) allows for more aero and cleaner airflow overall.
Stepping inside, changes to the GT3 are subtle but rather noticeable. Of course, the rear seats are deleted for the GT3, which can be either left as is or the “Clubsport” package can be optioned, which provides a half roll cage for the rear. For seats, you can either have the standard 4 or 18-way adjustable Sport Seats, or the option of Carbon Fibre bucket seats, which can be trimmed in a variety of ways. The infotainment system remains as is, with the main change in the centre being the addition of a proper lever for the PDK transmission, giving the driver the option to manually select gears with the lever (down for upshifts, up for downshifts as it should be). Of course, the manual transmission will allow for even more engagement. Behind the steering wheel, the biggest difference is the new central rev-counter which goes all the way to “10”, with the red line being a sweet 9000 rpm.
Ultimately though, the GT3 is not about numbers (although, it posted a frankly ridiculous 6 minutes 59 seconds Nürburgring lap time). What matters most with the GT3 is the driving experience. The tactility, feedback. The emotions you get when you’re behind the wheel. While other cars may be faster in a straight line, the GT3 offers an experience that puts a smile on your face, constantly. Pricing and availability in SA to be confirmed soon.