Fans have been waiting in anticipation since the news broke that Porsche would be revealing the RS version of their 2022 Porsche 718 Cayman GT4. The original vehicle was already quite good, so it seems Porsche wants to up the ante from “Perfectly Irrational” to “Completely Bonkers”.
Porsche decided to take the flat-six engine used in the 911 GT3 and throw it into the 718 Cayman GT4 RS. The same engine is rated for 502hp in the 911 but only 493hp in the Cayman RS. However, compared to the original 718 Cayman GT4 and its 414hp and 317lb.-ft of torque, the RS puts out 79hp more and an additional 14 pound-feet of rotation. The RS version achieves a power to weight ratio of 6.55 pounds per horsepower.
No surprise, this RS variant is equipped with Porsche’s famous PDK dual-clutch transmission. They have altered the gearing to be a bit shorter than what’s in the PDK-equipped 718 Cayman GT4, which helps increase acceleration. Impressively, though, the RS variant still reaches a higher top speed than the standard GT4 (196mph vs. 187mph) and reaches 60mph a half second quicker (3.2 seconds vs. 3.7 seconds). Drivers can opt to use the shift paddles mounted on the steering wheel or, if they feel particularly adventurous, the newly designed shift lever in the center console.
Porsche also enhanced the suspension by using connecting ball joints to improve responsiveness and precision. An RS-specific damper setup is utilized on this vehicle, and Porsche altered the spring and roll bar rates to make this beast as track-ready as possible.
Aero and Design
All of that power and fancy shift changing doesn’t do much good if it doesn’t reach the ground, though. Porsche knows this well, and has updated some of the exterior design and aerodynamic bits to further increase the performance of this car.
First off, air intakes have been added behind the driver and passenger side front windows where glass used to be on the standard version. This is difference that can apparently be heard, as the intakes are very close to the occupants ears. The rear-quarter panel intakes are still present, but Porsche revised them to meet the cooling demand of the new engine.
The 718 Cayman GT4 RS shares its swan-neck mounted rear wing with the 2022 911 GT3 and it probably the most obvious difference from other 718 models. Porsche lowered the RS model Cayman, gave it some fancy aero bits like front wheel well ventilation, a rear diffusor, an adjustable front diffusor, and a new front spoiler lip with side-blades, all of which means the GT4 RS generates up to 25 percent more downforce when in Performance mode over the 718 Cayman GT4.
The design of the GT4 RS was centered around performance, and due to stricter emissions regulations, Porsche couldn’t simply increase the output of their 6-cylinder boxer engine. Instead, they decide to put the 718 Cayman GT4 RS on a diet.
This model comes in at a 3,227 pound curb weight, which is 49 pounds less than the non-RS Cayman with a PDK transmission. The front fender and hood are made out of carbon fiber reinforced plastic, the rear window is lightweight glass, and Porsche saved weight in the doors by utilizing fabric loops as handles and storage nets. The optional Weissach Package adds more carbon fiber to the mix, including pieces like the cooling air intakes, air box lid, the rear wing, and more. If you want to spend even more you can add magnesium wheels as an option to the optional Weissach Package.
The Sum of Engineering Excellence
The 2022 718 Cayman GT4 RS shares a lot in common with the incoming 2022 911 GT3, and that’s no coincidence. Both vehicles are excellent in their own right, and the 718 Cayman GT4 RS, thanks to all of the improvements mentioned above, is the most exciting member of the 718 product line. On the shorter track variant of the Nürburgring, the GT4RS clocked in at 7:04.511 minutes, which is 23.6 second faster than the standard 718 Cayman GT4. Good news for Porsche, what they did worked.
Whether it is worth the price, that may depend on who you are. The 718 Cayman GT4 RS MSRPs at $141,700 USD, which does not including delivery, processing, or handling. This puts it $20,000 behind the 2022 911 GT3 which, at least on paper, is a very similar performing car. Dealers can expect the 718 Cayman GT4 RS in summer of 2022.