New 2020 Porsche 718 GTS

Added six appeal: New 2020 Porsche 718 GTS 4.0 Cayman and Boxster

New 2020 Porsche 718 GTS

Porsche has announced new 2020 GTS versions of the 718 Cayman and Boxster models, with a six-cylinder engine making a notable appearance. 

The Stuttgart company had previously moved away from the flat-six engine, deeming turbocharged four-cylinder units more than sufficient. 

Seeing the fitment of a 4.0-litre flat-six ‘boxer’ engine, combined with a six-speed manual transmission, is likely to be music to the ears of Porsche purists.

New 2020 Porsche 718 GTS

At the heart of the mid-engined 718 Cayman coupe and open-top Boxster is a detuned version of the flat-six found in the range-topping 718 GT4 and Spyder.

Although output falls from 420 hp seen in the GT4, it still remains at an impressive 400 hp with torque unchanged at 310 lb-ft. 

A 7,800 rpm rev limit is also marginally lower, but the standard sports exhaust means the 718 GTS models should still have more than sufficient aural excitement. 

New 2020 Porsche 718 GTS

The figures from Porsche also place the performance of the GTS pairing close to the formidable GT4 version. 

0-62 mph is said to take 4.5 seconds in the GTS, 0.1 seconds slower than the GT4, with a top speed of 182 mph. 

Given that the 718 GTS models are intended by Porsche to be “great companions for any journey”, we imagine buyers can live with the 6 mph slower top speed compared to the GT4. 

New 2020 Porsche 718 GTS

Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM) sports suspension is fitted as standard, lowering the GTS cars by 20 mm. A mechanical limited-slip differential is also part of the deal, with Porsche Active Drivetrain Mounts along for the ride. 

Distinguishing the GTS cars from regular 718 models is a Sport Design front bumper with dark detailing used on the air intakes and splitter.

A GTS-specific rear bumper accommodates the twin tailpipes for the sports exhaust system, with darkened front and rear lights also included. 

New 2020 Porsche 718 GTS

Just in case anyone at the filling station is unsure as to which 718 model you have bought, ‘GTS 4.0’ lettering is applied to the doors. 

A set of black 20-inch alloy wheels are included, wearing high-performance tyres. Upgraded brakes with red-painted calipers are standard fitment, with Porsche’s ceramic composite brakes on the options list. 

Dark Alcantara material is used extensively throughout the cabin, covering the sports seats, steering wheel, manual gear knob, and roof lining in the Cayman GTS coupe. An optional GTS package can bring carbon fibre trim, and a greater degree of interior colour personalisation. 

New 2020 Porsche 718 GTS

Despite performance aimed at the road, Porsche has also included the Track Precision App for the new GTS models. This allows drivers to record and replay their performance when using their 718 on a race circuit. 

Prices for the new six-cylinder GTS models have increased, with the 718 Cayman now costing from £64,088. Those wanting open-top thrills in the 718 Boxster will need to find £65,949 before the lure of the Porsche options list. 

Orders can be placed now, and UK buyers do get the benefit of a tailored driver coaching session at the Silverstone-based Porsche Experience Centre.

2019 Porsche Cayman GT4 review: old-school driving excitement

Porsche 718 Cayman GT4

A free-breathing flat-six mounted in the middle. A manual gearbox. Rear-wheel drive. And a lightweight, shrink-wrapped body tailor-made for Welsh B-roads. The old Cayman GT4 was pretty close to perfect, an instant icon. Which gave Andreas Preuninger, head of Porsche’s go-faster GT division, an unenviable task. For a car where less is more, how do you offer, well, more?

The new GT4 still has six cylinders, whereas lesser 718 Caymans make do with four. It’s still naturally aspirated, with no turbos to mute the soundtrack or soften right-pedal response. It still has a manual ’box, although a paddle-shift PDK arrives next year. And it remains lighter (1,420kg) and usefully smaller than the ever-expanding 911. The differences here are in the details, and they coalesce into something that surpasses even the 2015 original.

Read more Motoring Research reviews FIRST on City AM

Contrary to internet wisdom, this isn’t a downsized GT3 engine. The 4.0-litre six is a modified 911 Carrera motor, serving up 420hp at 7,600rpm. Zero to 62mph in 4.4 seconds matches the old GT4, while top speed increases from 184 to 188mph. A price of £75,348 is around £22,000 more than a 718 Cayman S, but don’t expect to flip it for a profit. Used examples of its predecessor were advertised at £100,000 or more soon after launch, but this is a series production Porsche, not a limited edition.

Porsche 718 Cayman GT4

This latest GT4 also has a soft-top sister in the Boxster Spyder. The open version is mechanically identical and also shares the same chassis, with variable PASM damping and 30mm lower suspension. The Cayman’s upswept diffuser and fixed spoiler (the Boxster has a pop-up wing) muster up to 50 percent more downforce with no extra drag. Porsche says both cars are ‘specifically designed for use on the racetrack’.

I won’t be venturing on-track today, but the rollercoaster roads around Wantage – close to the Cotswolds – are the next best thing. I arrive at Porsche HQ in Reading, collect a 911-shaped key and collapse clumsily into a carbon bucket seat (a £3,788 option). The infotainment looks dated and the fabric door pulls are a token gesture, yet the GT4 still feels special – particularly with a half-rollcage (part of the £2,778 Clubsport Pack) inches behind my head.

Around town, the engine sounds fretful and uncouth: a pit bull straining at the leash. Light the fuse, though, and it breaks free with a belligerent bellow, chasing the 8,000rpm redline with frenzied intensity. If super unleaded is your drug of choice, this is Class A contraband. The six-speed stick-shift is quick and accurate, blipping the throttle automatically when you change down, while the PCCB carbon-ceramic brakes (another option, at £5,597) are totally fade-free.

Porsche 718 Cayman GT4

Still, it’s the steering I savour most. Devoid of any buttons, the Alcantara-wrapped wheel has just one purpose: being a constant and joyful font of feedback. The Cayman turns in with unflappable resolve and virtually no sense of inertia. It feels taut but complaint, like a loosely clenched fist, while the lightly-treaded Michelin Cup 2 tyres form a molecular bond with the road. That said, it might be rather less reassuring on a rainy day.

Andreas Preuninger recognised the essential rightness of the GT4 and hasn’t reinvented the recipe. It’s a couple of years since I drove the first-gen car and, from memory, the new one doesn’t feel hugely different. The improvements here are incremental. Thankfully, that means this remains one of the most lucid, tenacious, exuberant and downright exciting cars on sale. Short of spending six figures on a supercar, I’m not sure anything betters it.

Price: £75,348

0-62mph: 4.4sec

Top speed: 188mph

CO2 G/KM: 249

MPG combined: 25.7

Porsche 718 Cayman GT4: in pictures

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