Kyalami - Porsche SA reckons its new 718 Cayman and Boxster GTS models are "insatiable"; That's a pretty strange term to use to describe a car but once you start driving it, you just can't get enough of either of these new sports cars.
Needless to say, each time I drive a Porsche, it's as if my heart beats in unison with the car's engine. That might sound like utter Enterprise polony, but when you're a purist of the high performance car, you'll know exactly what I mean.
The new Cayman/Boxster GTS has been built for drivers who want a daily drive without having to compromise on performance. The biggest difference between these two cars is that one sports a hardtop coupe (Cayman) and the other is a soft-top convertible (Boxster).
Some GTS history
According to Porsche, the 904 Carrera GTS first brought motorsport technology to the streets as a "road-approved sports car" more than 60 years ago in 1963.
The 924 GTS and 928 GTS that followed refined this principle throughout the 1980s and 1990s. In 2010, the GTS celebrated its rebirth in the form of the 911 Carrera GTS (Type 997), followed in 2014 by the Porsche Boxster GTS and Cayman GTS.
For its latest models the automaker has ditched its six-flat engine in favour of a flat four-cylinder turbo unit.
The 718 GTS models both house a 4-cylinder 2.5-litre engine is still mid-engined but the automaker says it's the "absolute pinnacle of development of the Cayman and Boxster".
Power for the Cayman and Boxster GTS is now 269kW, that's 11kW more than the 718 S and 26kW more than the GTS predecessor which had a naturally aspirated engine. When mated to the 7-speed PDK (Porsche dual-clutch) 430Nm of torque is available from 1900 and 5000rpm, while the 6-speed manual gearbox is good for 420Nm. Both cars are also 10mm lower than the S version thanks to the standard chassis with Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM).
Watch the video below from the launch at Kyalami:
So what's new?
The exterior features black GTS logos, 20" wheels in black satin finish, a new Sport Design apron, black tinted Bi-Xenon headlights and dark tinted tail lights, a back rear apron finished off with centrally positioned black sports exhaust tail pipes.
On the inside of the vehicles there's a stopwatch which belongs to the Sport Chrono Package, Sports Seats Plus with Alcantara centre inserts, GTS logos on headrests and even some Alcantara leather on the steering wheel, centre console and armrests.
From racetrack to road
Naturally, the two cars were launched on track, at Kyalami. Of course it's made for the track, and even without slicks, either model is capable of some seriously fast hot laps around the marvelous facility.
My driving partner and I opted to take on the 'on-road' route first, saving the track for last. Despite the sporty nature of the cars, they're great as a daily vehicle, transforming mundane Midrand-Pretoria traffic into a relatively enjoyable experience. I used every opportunity to give it some foot, that thunderous growl eminating from the centrally-positioned exhaust system is a blast and sends pulsating quivers through your body.
Even though the car is fitted with loads of standard equipment and tech, it can be pushed to its limits on track. The 718 GTS models are fitted with 20" Carrera S black painted wheels while the front brake discs have a 330mm diameter and the rear discs a diameter of 299mm.
The Sport Chrono Package, which includes dynamic gearbox mounts, is standard, says the automaker. The Porsche Torque Vectoring (PTV) with mechanical rear differential lock makes for more agile and more stable driving. Hence lapping Kyalami is titillating and the power bands for each vehicle is truly something special. There's no turbo lag, significant improved torque and quicker acceleration that's as smooth as a rose petal around Kyalami's favourite bends thanks to the redeveloped intake duct and optimised turbocharger
With the Sports Chrono Pack, coupled to the Porsche Doppelkupplung (PDK), zero to 100km/h times are 0.1 seconds faster than the current 718 S models, completing the sprint in just 4.1 seconds.
With the manual 6-speed transmission, they hit 100km/h in just 4.6 seconds while the top speed of the two GTS models is 290km/h.
There's no doubt that these cars will pick up several new homes during the course of the year.
Porsche 718 Caymann GTS - R1 122 000
Porsche 718 Boxster GTS - R1 137 000