The GT4 has been showered with accolades since its debut. With a new GT4, based off the current Porsche 718, hitting the roads, many automotive writers are dredging up their own notes on the original model to see how it compares to the new.
Porsche’s GT4 was the first time the company gave the mid-engined Cayman chassis the opportunity to dethrone the 911. Porsche has been overprotective of its rear-engined 911 since, well, forever. The world at large knew that if the Cayman was given the attention it deserved…along with the power it needed…it could stand up against big brother 911. And the GT4 did just that.
Borrowing bits and pieces from the 911 GT3, the GT4 was Porsche’s first full GT effort on the Cayman chassis and did they ever deliver. Taking the naturally-aspirated 3.8-liter flat-six from the 911 Carrera S, flipping it 180-degrees and pairing it with a manual six-speed transmission made this parts-bin special any car enthusiasts wet dream.
That six-cylinder engine was detuned to produce 385hp, down 15hp from the same engine when placed in the 911 S. But it didn’t matter. The GT4 could slaughter a racetrack with handling like a slot car on a magnetized track.
The biggest downside of the GT4 was super tall gearing but if there was enough room to bring the engine to its redline, I don’t think you would have complained about the aural party on the way up.
The Cayman GT4 was, and remains, an authentic driver’s car that delivers on every promise its spec sheets and sensual body tease.