When Porsche announced that the second generation 991 Porsche 911 cars were to be turbo charged a lot of us wondered what this meant for the GT3. To some this direction was met with harsh criticism to others the change was welcome. The benefits of better fuel economy, power gains and more environmentally friendly engines meant that Porsche had to bite the bullet and used forced induction in their cars. However, the GT3 escaped the scourge of turbo charging and has a normally aspirated 4.0 litre flat six derived from the Cup car.
The history of the 911 GT3 is a rather illustrious one but one of small increments. With each iteration of the GT3 from the 996 generation through to the current generation Porsche engineers have been tweaking and adding to the GT3’s repertoire bit by bit. The original GT3(993 generation) was the first production car to officially lap the nothern circuit at the Nurbugring in under 8 minutes. 7 minutes 53 seconds to be precise. The car was powered from a water cooled 3.6 litre 6 cylinder flat six and developed a ‘mere’ 265kw of power. The engine was based off the le mans 911 GT1 race car. The top speed was 302kph and the 0-100kph time was 4.8 seconds.
The GT3 that followed had the same 3.6 litre flat six but with slightly more power at 280kw. The 0.100kph time had dropped to 4.5 seconds and the top speed was raised to 306kph. The brakes we bigger and for the first time in a GT3 carbon ceramic brakes were offered as an option.
The latest iteration of the GT3 features a 4.0 litre flat six cylinder engine also derived from Motorsport. Power is up to 368kw at 8,250rpm and torque is at 460Nm at 6000rpm. This engine has also borrowed heavily from Porsche’s Motorsport division and is said to almost be the same with the GT3 Cup race car. This will power the GT3 through to a top speed of 318kph and from 0-100kph in 3.9s. There is a dual clutch transmission which comes as standard but should the owner desire a manual gearbox is again available in the GT3. Fitted with the dual clutch transmission the GT3 will sprint to 100kph in 3.4s.
Handling has been refined thanks to Porsche’s rear wheel steering system which steers the rear wheels in either similar or opposite direction to the front wheels depending on the speed. Active engine mounts have also been fitted to the car to help the car manage its momentum around corners better.
The GT3 is currently available to order and will be in show rooms from mid-September. Prices will start from ZAR 2,750,000.