Porsche 911 GT3 RS Storms In
Wednesday 19th August 2009
Porsche unveils an all-new version of the most hardcore 911
These are the first official images of the all-new Porsche 911 GT3 RS – the most exciting and hardcore 911 of them all.
There are few car models that can ratchet up excitement in stages like a 911. First there’s the base model, which understandably generates a certain amount of excitement. Then the boys and girls from Weissach announce a new GT3 version, which keeps the track day fans dribbling. Next Porsche reveals a new version of the Turbo. But the real weak-at-the-knees moment comes in the form of the new RS.
Ever since the classic ‘ducktail’ Carrera RS 2.7 was released back in 1973, the RS badge has only ever been applied to the most hardcore roadgoing 911s, and has created some of the most iconic Porsches ever.
So with a lineage that runs from the 2.7, via the 964, 993, 996 and first 997 RS, the new GT3 RS has a lot to live up to.
The technical specifications certainly seem promising, though. The classic flat-six engine, like the motor in the latest GT3, has gone up from 3.6 to 3.8 litres. It now produces 444bhp, up 35bhp on the previous GT3 RS, and 15bhp up on the 429bhp GT3.
The most impressive figure associated with the new 911 GT3 RS, however, is a specific output of 118bhp per litre – a stunning figure for a naturally aspirated road car. That power is transmitted to the road via a six-speed manual gearbox – no fussy PDK twin-clutch tech here – with shorter ratios than in the GT3. Porsche hasn’t revealed any performance figures for the new GT3 RS, but it’s a safe bet to say that it’ll be quicker than the GT3, although with a lower top speed.
On any other car, this would look ridiculousThe new GT3 RS also gets Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM), but this has been tweaked specifically for the new car to, in Porsche’s words “further improve the sporting behaviour of the chassis”. Another piece of electronic cleverness fitted to the new GT3 RS is Porsche’s Active Drivetrain Mounts (PADM). Depending on driving conditions, the engine mounts change in their stiffness and damping effect to resist the movement of the drivetrain in the bodyshell.
More significant to the RS’s ‘sporting behaviour’ are wider tracks front and rear, necessitating blistered front arches and wider rear bodywork. Beneath those chunky arches sit beefy 245/35 ZR 19 tyres at the front, and 325/30 ZR 19 tyres at the rear. The front tyres measure 9 inches across, while the rears are a whopping 12 inches wide.
The requisite racing seats and roll cageLight weight is also a key element of any good RS Porsche and, although Porsche hasn’t yet released any details about the car’s overall weight saving, the latest 911 GT3 RS duly delivers, with an optional lithium-ion that saves more than 10kg over a conventional lead-acid battery.