In this year’s Best of the Best, we continue to honour the brands and people who have continued to create covetable products, even in the midst of a global pandemic. Here, we have the Porsche 992 GT3, the best sports car in our books
Ever since Porsche’s 911 GT3 came on the scene in 1999, the high-revving, naturally aspirated variant has been a wish-list vehicle. A quick glance shows the newest GT3 to be slightly longer, taller and wider than its most recent predecessor, though at 1,435kg it weighs the same. That particular trick is thanks to lighter components – including glass, exhaust and wheels – plus greater use of composites.
Enhanced aerodynamics are noticeable in the heavily revised front and rear, but the most significant change is the double-wishbone front suspension, which replaces the tried-and-true MacPherson-strut set-up. The result is even greater agility, which is further bolstered by rear axle steering that functionally shortens or lengthens the wheelbase, as needed. The interior is updated with the latest 992 details, including the flat digital dash, but the bucket seats from the previous GT3 are a welcome option for extended runs.
It’s all motivated by a 502hp, four-litre flat-six with 469Nm of torque and the distinction of being the only naturally aspirated engine in the 911 line, as well as having a lovely howl as it wails its way up to an 8,400rpm redline. Both a seven-speed PDK and a six-speed manual transmission are available, and while Stuttgart’s double-clutch auto shifter is legendarily fast and durable – and comes with a Launch Control feature to boot – it’s hard to argue against the light, precise engagement of a Porsche stick shift.
What would Andreas Preuninger, director of the GT model line, choose? “People like manual transmissions for a reason,” he says. “I would take a manual, maybe.”
Yeah, us too.