It’s quite a farewell
In 2019 this generation of 911 will cease production, and that will be the end of 991.2 generation 911, the last of these naturally aspirated marvels. As ever, Porsche is clearing its throat for its swansong by introducing the GT3 RS of this model. It is, in Porsche’s words, ‘the closest link to motorsport we have ever had’.
Which means there is a sort of inevitably about us finding ourselves strapped in next to Walter Rohl on a lap of the Nurburgring GP circuit.
Porsche 911 GT3 RS
Engine: 4.0-litre, flat-six, petrol
Torque: 347lb ft
Gearbox: 7-spd twin-clutch automatic
Kerb weight: 1430kg
Top speed: 194mph
Fuel economy: 22.1mpg
The 4.0-litre engine has no forced induction to help it make 513bhp and it’s very like the engine in the 911 Cup car, as is the rose-jointed suspension, as are the spring rates in the suspension. So, quite track-oriented then. It’s full of tech but to get it off the line there’s a problem. Walter Rohl has to find the key. Yes it has a key to fire up the ignition. How marvellous.
The engine zings, responding incredibly quickly and precisely to every input, all the while making the sort of noise that you want to hear again and again. It’s ferocious but then the handling package is so good it can keep an iron control.
There’s light weight of course, about 1430kg, in part thanks to a magnesium roof, and carbon all over the place, everywhere from wings and bumpers to parts of the suspension. All that flowing bodywork has quite a collection of ducting, some of it quite aggressive. This allows air to surge under the car for added downforce and also pushes air through the brakes – but that leaves air forced into the wheelarches, so the wheel spokes act as rotors, spinning the air out again. The detailing is stupendous.
On the track, in either driver’s or passenger’s seats, the effect is devastating. Those sports seats are deeply supportive, and there’s quite a lot of Alcantara. There’s a shortage of the stuff, but when you’re at this end of the spectrum – there’s not.
The driving position is perfect, leaving to twiddle the round wheel – crazy, huh, like having a key to start it with. You can also push either of the two pedals and fiddle with the gearlever on the PDK auto box should you wish. Your inputs become instant outputs. There’s a huge amount of downforce and grip, yet there’s also an immense subtlety to everything. You can be brutal if you wish but this GT3 RS also allows you to finesse every action, every corner, every angle.
It resists understeer, and turns like it’s a mid-engined supercar, which is mighty clever given the lump waggling about in the rear. Everything is true, focused, precise. All this while motoring at the sort of rate racers of not long ago would have been blown away by. And it’s road legal with numberplates.
It’s the combination of power, precision and light weight that marks out this GT3 RS as something really special, even against its siblings. All the details, the tiny improvements, add up and up.
The price adds up and up too but at £141,000 it’s probable that supply will not keep up with demand in the timeframe left.