Expect Porsche To Make More 'Simple' Drivers' Cars Like The GT3 Touring
Demand for good manual models prompts a shift towards driver involvement at Stuttgart
Porsche’s new, manual 911 GT3 Touring is the first product in a new focus for the German brand.
According to an interview in Autocar, Porsche has recognised that its customers are more interested in driver involvement than they are in pure performance, and the company intends to reposition some of its quicker offerings with this in mind.
It’s an approach sparked by demand for the 2016 Cayman GT4. That car took inspiration from the 997 generation 911 GT3, and used a six-speed manual to marshal the 385bhp flat-six engine.
Frank Walliser, head of GT at Porsche, told Autocar:
The GT4 showed us there was demand for a pure driving Porsche with a manual gearbox. This theme of ‘pure and simple’ is a success in other fields too, like scrambler motorbikes and single-speed bicycles. People like simplicity.
This is what drove Porsche to create the 911 GT3 Touring. This car takes all the best bits of the 911 GT3 but puts them in a more GT-like package, with a focus on involvement over pure speed. It still sports a 500bhp flat-six, but does away with the large rear wing. A six-speed manual is standard fit, unlike the regular 991.2 GT3 which has a seven-speed PDK (although the manual is an option).
Crucially though, the GT3 Touring is not a limited production model, unlike vehicles like the 911R.
So could we be seeing more driver-oriented Porsches in the future? Yes, but don’t expect them to come cheap. Walliser notes that it only really works on the high-powered models because of the investment required - and “you can’t downsize the idea of a GT car.”
What’s next on Porsche’s pure and simple radar? Another six-cylinder Cayman GT4. We can’t wait.