GT3 Mk2 preview event at Silverstone.
A few months back, I received a survey request from Porsche relating specifically to the next gen 997 GT3. Normally, surveys go straight in the bin, but in this instance I relished the idea of being part of the demographic that helped shape the future of the GT3. The questions were specifically aimed at current owners and its intention was to guage the direction of the car; should it be softer and more compliant, or should the car be even more focused as a track car? My response was pretty much along the lines of ‘What we have is perfect, don’t fix it’.
Today I attended the special GT3 preview event which discussed the results of the survey and also went onto disclose a whole host of detailed information about the next gen. GT3. This was coupled with breakfast, a number of hotlaps in a 997S, skid pan, wet plate in a Cayman S and also an ‘ice-hill’. All hugely fun and the best memory is of the 997S. It was a manual with the GT3 carbon bucket seats and was a real revelation. It’s all the car anyone would ever need really and with Carrera S’s in the £30k’s now, they are a far more attractive alternative to the Caymans. Also drove the PDK in the Cayman today and boy that was weird. Not sure if it simply wasn’t suited to the Cayman S (perhaps not enough power?) but the whole set up wasn’t attractive to me.
As for the colour debate, I’m almost positively kind of sure now that Guards Red is the colour to go for. With the harsh, motorshow spotlights absent, the car was at last shown in a normal light and really did look excellent. That spoiler is the best looking spoiler I’ve ever seen and the small subtle changes work really well, such as the change in wheel design.
Andreas Preuninger, 997 GT3 and RS project manager was there to answer some questions and teamed with the rest of the organisers, really did put on an informative, entertaining day out. He also leaked out some information about the forthcoming Gen 2 (Mk2) GT3 RS:
- More power (14BHP more)
- RSR Front suspension
- Titanium components (Exhaust)
- Wider front track
- ‘Stealth look’ colour schemes – not so brash or loud this time
- Hinted at string door pulls
- New decal scheme
- Shorter gear ratio’s
- £15k – £20k price premium over vanilla GT3
- October unveil, February production
- Frankfurt Motorshow unveil.
All in all, enough to warrant a premium this time over the normal GT3. It appeared the heaviest criticism levied on Andreas’ team was the fact that there was not enough differentiation between the two models to justify the premium. I’m almost tempted to transfer my deposit. Almost….