Change. Most people do not like change, especially when it is brought on by updated rules and regulations that are forced upon you. In the automotive world, increasingly stringent emissions regulations and a focus on cleaner more efficient motoring can have dramatic changes to car manufacturer’s future plans. When the 718 Cayman GTS was announced in 2016 sporting a 2.5 litre 4-cylinder turbocharged engine Porsche fans were in uproar, car manufacturers however were adamant it was a sign of things to come. The upside was a more effortless every day driving experience, a reduction in emissions and less noise, however, they are not exactly the credentials that sports car fans cry out for. Yes, the power was up, the driving experience and handling were as impressive as ever, but it felt like a dilution of the experience that the GTS moniker usually brings to a Porsche sportscar.
Fast forward to 2020 and despite the torrid time that the current situation is bringing to the year, some things are better than before. The latest Cayman GTS is now sporting a naturally aspirated 4.0 litre flat-six. An admission from Porsche that they may have gone a step too far? Perhaps. The new engine is a detuned version of the engine found in the GT4 track monster and despite losing 20 bhp during the transition, the GTS is 15kg lighter than the GT4 and the engine feels in no way inferior to the donor car. With 394 bhp of high revving naturally aspirated power, the GTS is just 0.1 seconds slower to 62mph and sounds infinitely better than the turbocharged engine throughout the range.
With a rev limiter at 7,800rpm and a linear power delivery across the range, the Cayman GTS reminds you about the best bits of a naturally aspirated engine when nearly everything is turbocharged these days. Rather than offering peak torque from low down like a turbocharged engine does, the peak torque is available at a lofty 5,500rpm encouraging you to use the whole rev range and hear the addictive noise it creates.
Despite the new engine the revised Cayman GTS has changed very little from the previous generation, a rare occurrence where a complete overhaul of an engine direction and way of thinking has occurred during a mid-life facelift and not with a completely new model number car. Not that this is a bad thing by any means. The Cayman GTS looks like a less ‘in-your-face’ version of the GT4 with its smoked headlights, 20” wheels, revised rear bumpers and the fact it looks more aggressive thanks to the lowered ride height when compared to lesser Cayman models. Under the skin you get the Sport Chrono package with four driving modes, adaptive dampers and a locking rear differential. All of this means that the impressive levels of grip, prefect balance and expertly weighted steering gives you the confidence to push the car to match your driving skill.
With so many cars these days hampered by restrictions, quietened down by turbochargers and even overcome by the need for more power, the Cayman GTS feels like the right amount of everything. A return to the glorious soundtrack and driving thrill of a high-revving naturally aspirated engine and rather than just a dulled down GT4, it becomes a more subtle yet equally impressive sportscar. There are very few cars can you truly appreciate the full capability of these days unless you find yourself on a track, the Cayman GTS is a rare exception. No longer is it a car people buy because they cannot quite afford a 911, but arguably a better, more pure, sports car and at that conclusion a bit of a bargain.
Our 2020 70-plate delivery mileage Porsche 718 Cayman 4.0 GTS manual is finished in Jet Black metallic with Black leather and Race-Tex interior. It comes with an extensive list of optional features to include 20” 718 Sport alloy wheels painted in Satin Aurum, Full carbon fibre bucket seats, BOSE surround sound audio, ParkAssist front and rear, Cruise control and much more. The car is presented in as new condition with just 30 miles covered and has the remainder of a Porsche manufacturer warranty until October 2023.
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