New Cayman GT4 Clubsport gets 425hp flat-six

Cayman GT4. Five syllables guaranteed to elicit some response from a car enthusiast. It might be joy at having just driven one, frustration at not being able to afford one, or the contentment of ownership. Whatever the case, nobody is going to be passive. Now, nearly four years after Porsche first dropped a 911 engine into its smallest sports car, we're getting a taste of the second-generation GT4 with this, the 718 GT4 Clubsport.

Yep, it's race car first this time around, reversing what happened with the 981 generation. Crucially though, it could proffer a few hints as to the roadgoing 718 GT4, given the previous motorsport version produced exactly the same power - 385hp - as the civilian equivalent. Now that crucial figure is up 40hp to 425hp, produced again from a 3.8-litre flat-six and, interestingly, at higher revs than previously - 7,500rpm, against 7,400. Torque climbs ever so slightly by 3lb ft to 313, again made further towards the redline than the last Clubsport - where that made its peak at 4,750rpm, now 6,600rpm is required.

All of which suggests an engine that really needs revving to get the best from it, a trait already made familiar by the GT4, and one that appears to have been heightened for the tricky second album. For reference a street 911 GT3, a car that will inevitably be discussed at some point, makes 500hp at 8,250rpm and 339lb ft at 6,000rpm. Also carried over from the previous Clubsport to this 718 version are the PDK gearbox, 911 GT3 Cup front suspension, 18-inch forged wheels wrapped in Michelin slick or wet tyres and iron discs of 380mm diameter.

Things change most significantly in the body; Porsche is keen for this GT4 to deliver "improved drivability and faster lap times", but also an increased focus "on the sustainable use of raw materials." Hence this 718 is the first production derived racer to use 'natural-fibre composite material' - a fibre mix constructed mainly from agricultural by-products - and is used here for the doors and rear wing. Apparently the weight and stiffness of the material is similar to carbon fibre, the car actually tipping the scales at 1,320kg ex-works with the cage in. Which is, er, 20kg more than before. Whether the fibre makes it to the road car is also unconfirmed...

While both track day and race ready Clubsport were offered before, Porsche says this is the first time the GT4 has been offered "in two versions ex-works for global track driving excitement". But we're only getting the Competition derivative in the UK, so no choice between it and the more humble track day version. As a Clubsport Competition, the car receives three-way adjustable dampers, a 115-litre fuel tank, brake balance adjuster, the steering wheel from a 911 GT3 R and an integrated air jack system. A proper little racer then, presumably eligible for GT4 championships across the globe. Presumably it's going to be quite successful, too...

You'll pay proper race car money as well though, the 718 GT4 Clubsport listing at Β£130,300 plus VAT from Porsche Motorsport, a pronounced jump from the Β£95k plus VAT asked for the predecessor in 2015. Still, with more power, more downforce and "significantly more racing genes" than the last Clubsport, a price rise was to be expected. The car will be available from February. And the GT4 road car? We'll have to wait and see...


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Comments (31) Join the discussion on the forum

  • ClarkeyDiem 03 Jan 2019

    Well after 18 m of thread chatter on what the 718GT4 road car may be packing, the comp car answer is 3.8....discuss;)

  • Leggy 03 Jan 2019

    Looks the business.
    I guess when the road version is launched it will be on limited numbers again. Otherwise a lot of current owners who’ve paid over list are going to be miffed.

  • houlbt 03 Jan 2019

    For what it’s worth you half that price hike is arguably the weaker GBP since 2015

  • tomwoodis 03 Jan 2019

    Could I not have mine in that colour scheme please smile

    Looks lovely otherwise. Let’s hope the same engine ends up in the road going variant

  • topsyt 04 Jan 2019

    Any Porsche dealers out their willing to sell me one ? deposit ready now smile

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