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Porsche Cayman GT4 | Spotted

Want a GT4 to actually drive? Here's the one...

By Matt Bird / Wednesday, January 29, 2020

The wait is almost over: there's a Porsche Cayman 718 GT4 coming to PistonHeads HQ very soon, a group test is planned and, finally, we'll know if the 981 can really be improved upon. Dan P was suitably impressed by the 718 on track last summer, but the real test will be on road against similarly sorted rivals.

It has a very high bar to surpass, too. The old GT4, while not perfect, was a fabulous sports car. It looked brilliant, drove even better, and managed to combine everyday usability with sheer thrills arguably better than anything else; there would be absolutely nothing to stop a buyer using their GT4 every day of the week, and then more at weekends. Putting this performance in something of the Cayman's size was a masterstroke as well, just as the 991-era 911 was beginning to feel a little too chunky for some.

All that has, as you're most probably aware, kept the values of 981 GT4s buoyant to say the least. But the desirability presents a problem, too, albeit one not uniquely applicable to Porsches: namely, what's the point of having a great driver's car, if using it will only cause worry about miles harming value?

Well, there's good news. First is that mileage seemingly does little to harm the desirability of GT4s, with cars like this Viper Green example still commanding more than £70k after nearly four years and 24,000 miles. Remember the new list price was £64,451. Secondly, there are just one or two GT4s out there that have been... optimised, shall we say, quite deliberately to even further improve the driving experience. And they already have miles on them. And they cost the same as the other ones. So they have to be driven, really...

Cars like this one, specifically. One of the common criticisms levelled at this Cayman for the past five years is the gearing, which is pretty rangey. Over in California, Sharkwerks devised new ratios for third, fourth and fifth; a worthwhile improvement, it seems, though not exactly affordable at around $9,000. And that's without transport costs. Well, this GT4 has it fitted, which makes it recommendable already.

But there's more besides. The optional ceramic brakes are fitted here, too, supported by SRF brake fluid, alongside upgraded hoses, KW suspension, Manthey suspension arms and a fast road geometry set up. Yes, that's Manthey who build Cayman GT4 race cars and made the GT2 RS go even faster at the 'ring - they know what they're doing with Porsches.

Granted, at the near-£80k this particular Cayman is advertised for, there are lower mileage cars available. Only problem is we're then back the original argument - what's the point of buying a 500-mile GT4 if you're actually keen on driving one? Much better to opt for something like this, kept in regular use and with modifications that will only serve to make it even better. Should the time come to sell, this car should hold additional appeal to that particular group of buyers who might - heaven forbid - take their GT4 on circuit. And if the past few years are anything to go by, it'll still be worth some money...

So while it doesn't have the outright firepower of a GT3, or the box-fresh appeal of the very latest 718, the track day enthusiast should find plenty to enjoy about this GT4. Kudos to the original owner for spending the money and (presumably) using it as intended, because that can't have been a cheap endeavour by any means. But it probably was enormous fun - now's the opportunity to find out just how much for yourself.


SPECIFICATION - PORSCHE CAYMAN GT4 (981)
Engine:
3,800cc, flat-six
Transmission: 6-speed manual, rear-wheel drive
Power (hp): 385@7,400rpm
Torque (lb ft): 310@4,750rpm
MPG: 27.4
CO2: 238g/km
Recorded mileage: 12,000
First registered: 2016
Price new: £64,451 (standard)
Yours for: £77,900

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