Porsche 911 GT3 RS set to get 493bhp
Hardcore 911 GT3 RS will get 493bhp and 460Nm of torque from brand-new naturally aspirated engine.
Porsche's hotly anticipated 911 GT3 RS is tipped to get 493bhp and 460Nm of torque from a newly-developed 4.0-litre naturally-aspirated flat-six engine, according to leaked internal technical documents. The driver-focused sports coupe will appear for the first time at next month's Geneva Motor Show.
The figures, although unconfirmed by Porsche as yet, are only a marginal boost over the standard GT3's 475bhp and 440Nm, but the all-new powertrain will combine with a significant weight reduction and increased aero efficiency to bring it closer to Ferrari 458 Speciale performance levels.
To differenciate the RS from lesser 911s, the track-biased model will get a new, wider bodyshell composed of a carbon-fibre front end and a magnesium roof. The front will be 50mm wider than the GT3, while the rear end is 30mm wider and sits on enlarged 325-section tyres.
During an interview at the 2015 Detroit Motor Show, Porsche R&D boss Wolfgang Hatz confirmed a completely new engine for the upcoming GT3 RS. There had been rumours of turbocharging within the 911 range – but Hatz insisted that would be reserved for lesser models, and only when the 991 variant gets an overhaul later this year.
The 911 GT3 RS will also only be available with the seven-speed PDK transmission. The dual-clutch automatic gearbox is the only option on Porsche’s standard GT3, but changes gear in a matter of milliseconds.
Defending this decision, he said: “I have customers who said, ‘now we understand.’ PDK proved a lot of people wrong.”
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Hatz also commented on how he wanted to create more distinction for the 911 GT3 RS. He hinted that the GT3 RS will be a bigger step up than before, with more separation from the standard GT3 than we saw on the previous-generation 997 versions.
“Performance has to be the main objective. Customers love the current GT3. The RS has to be the peak. The 991 GT3 was very much a surprise for everybody because it’s a very useable car for every day. The GT3 RS will be more extreme,” he said.
There will be more changes to the car’s aero in an attempt to shave even more time off the GT3’s already impressive 7 minute 25 second Nurburgring lap time. Hatz couldn’t go into what those changes might be, but we can expect a more sculpted exterior, with a lower ride height and an even bigger fixed wing.
In other news, Hatz confirmed a new Cayman variant – the track-focused GT4 – that will appear at next month's Geneva show alongsider the GT3 RS.
He said this too would be a step up from the previous flagship model, saying: “We’ve moved it a little bit up [from the Cayman R] – it’s a proper motorsport car.”
The objective for Porsche’s investment in the Cayman GT4 is to create a road car that would be compliant with current regulations in the highly competitive race series. The GT4 European Series currently includes models such as the Aston Martin GT4 Vantage, BMW M3 GT4 and Lotus Evora GT4. If all goes according to plan, we could see the Cayman GT4 appear as soon as next season.