UPDATE - 11.02.2019
With the new Cayman GT4's anticipated launch fast approaching, Porsche engineers have shifted their attention to the development of a second variant, which is expected to join the regular car shortly after it goes on sale this summer. In a move that mirrors the 911 GT3 line-up, the GT4 is due to be offered with a more discreet Touring Package, which does away with the regular car's fixed rear wing for a retracting one.
While Porsche has remained tight-lipped on such a variant, our spy snappers have captured images of a test car that fits the bill. It's a 718 Cayman wearing the upcoming GT4's rear diffuser, which pushes its twin-exit exhaust pipes apart. Need more proof? Our snapper said there was no doubt that the engine nestled within this Cayman was of the flat six variety because of the lovely noises it made.
Don't be fooled by the rest of the car's bodywork, which looks to be identical to lower 718 models, because we can expect the GT4's more aggressive aero pieces to be retained on the finished car. And while we've yet to catch a glimpse of its interior, our best guess is that the GT4 Touring will follow suit of the 911 GT3 Touring and swap Alcantara for leather and cloth.
Our snappers have also seen a 718 Boxster running with what looks to be an identical rear end, sans fixed wing, which suggests engineers are at an advanced stage of development with the Cayman GT4's sister car, the Boxster Spyder. Like the tin top GT4, the convertible will stick with a flat six, although the Spyder's chassis setup will be unique due to the structural differences of the two models.
We shouldn't have too long to wait before all of this becomes official, because the GT4 is due for reveal in the spring. If some admittedly hopeful sources are to be believed, we might even see it at Geneva next month...
ORIGINAL STORY - 05.02.2019
Porsche's GT department is lining up the fastest and most focused Cayman yet for arrival ahead of the Goodwood Festival of Speed this July, where the GT4 will make a dynamic debut in all its 4.0-litre flat six glory. PH has learned that the car will be revealed statically before then, but it'll be the Duke of Richmond's driveway which provides us with the first chance to hear how its new 911 GT3-sourced motor sounds.
As much as we'd love the GT-built six to rev as high as 9,000rpm, like it does in the GT3, we're expecting a few hundred revs to be chopped from its top-end along with a 15 per cent decrease in peak output to about 420hp. Still, a mid-engined sports car that revs to, say, 8,500rpm and can hit 62mph in about four seconds doesn't sound too bad, does it? Especially when it's due to come with a - rejoice - manual gearbox as standard. Sure, a PDK auto is due to follow, but there's nothing like three pedals and lever to signal a manufacturer's intent when it comes to producing a proper driver's car Mk2.
The rest of the new GT4 will be an example of evolution rather than revolution, unsurprisingly, so expect more lightweight tech to be employed within its chassis, including exotic metals in the suspension and wheel hubs, as well as lightweight forged wheels. Spotted test cars have worn even more aggressive external aero pieces, the most prominent of which is a larger fixed rear wing, but there's also a new front lip and the diffuser splits the two pipes of the exhaust system. Inside, the cabin is expected to stay largely the same as the regular 718, barring GT bucket seats and swathes of Alcantara.
Numerous sightings of the GT4 at the Nurburgring suggest Porsche could also announce a new lap time when the car is launched - it is a 21st century sports car after all. While the GT4 isn't going to blitz it to the top of the Stuttgart leaderboard - that title will probably be held by the 911 GT2 RS and its 6:47 for quite a while - given the rate of the GT department's development, we could be looking at a big improvement over the old 981 model.