Porsche have just welcomed two new variants of the 718 model to their line-up, in the form of a 718 Spyder and 718 Cayman GT4. Surprisingly, the Spyder and GT4 both share a technical base, including a newly developed four-litre six-cylinder naturally aspirated four-litre engine, together with a six-speed manual transmission. We’ll be honest — we didn’t see that coming at all. I mean, we anticipated a new GT4 and guesstimated it would be naturally aspirated. But a Spyder variant that shared the same platform as the GT4? Wow.
The engine is no doubt borrowed from their 911 bigger brother, with power outputs similar in both 718 Spyder and 718 Cayman GT4 — 420 PS (35 PS more than the previous 981 Cayman GT4) and 450 Nm between 5,000 and 6,800 rpm. Both cars can pip the century sprint in just 4.4 seconds, with both being capable of cracking the 300 km/h barrier; 301 km/h for the Spyder and 304 km/h for the GT4.
Body work on the 718 Cayman GT4 has been improved with aero in mind. It produces up to 50% more downforce, without adversely affecting drag. That single-chamber rear arch silencer alone creates some 30% of the downforce in the rear axle of the 718 Cayman GT4. The new fixed wing also creates some 20% more downforce when compared against its predecessor. All in, there is an extra 12 kg of downforce at 200 km/h.
The 718 Spyder is naturally less hardcore than its GT4 sibling. It is a car made for driving pleasure and features a lightweight convertible top that can cope with top speeds. Unlike the GT4, the Spyder has a rear spoiler which extends automatically at 120 km/h. Thanks for the functional diffuser, it is the first model in the Boxster family to generate downforce at the rear axle.
Both the 718 Spyder and 718 Cayman GT4 benefit from a high-performance GT chassis, featuring refined lightweight spring-strut front and rear axle, which make use of racing technologies. The direct connection to the chassis is partially by means of ball joints. The new PASM damping system lowers the car by a further 30 mm, lowering the center of gravity and improving lateral dynamics. Stopping power comes from large aluminium monobloc fixed-caliper brakes with PCCB available as a further option.
The GT4 will also be offered in a Clubsport package, which adds a rear steel roll-bar, hand-held fire extinguisher and six-point seatbelt on the driver’s side. The 718 Spyder now also runs on ultra-high-performance (UHP) tyres which were specially adapted by Porsche. They are part of the overall package that helped the 718 Cayman GT4 slash some ten seconds against its predecessor on the 20.6 km “Nordschleife”.
In Germany, the 718 Spyder and 718 Cayman GT4 are already available to order, with prices for the Spyder starting from EUR 93,350 and Cayman GT4 starting from EUR 96,206. No word yet when the duo will arrive in Malaysia, but the earliest would be Q4 2019 by our guesstimate.