The Porsche 718 family welcomes new members: with the new 718 Spyder and the 718 Cayman GT4, Porsche introduces two particularly emotional and powerful top models to claim top spot in the model series.
Their pure character will appeal to sports car enthusiasts who delight in driving pleasure and appreciate a high level of agility and an almost intimate proximity to the centre of power. The perfectly balanced mid-engine concept offers all this.
For the first time ever, the 718 Spyder and the 718 Cayman GT4 share a technical base. This includes the newly developed four-litre six-cylinder naturally aspirated engine, together with a six-speed manual transmission. The boxer engine generates 309kW (420hp) in both models. Whilst the GT4 represents the entry-level GT road model from Porsche, the Spyder lends itself to all kinds of curves. Both rely on highly efficient aerodynamics, a full GT chassis and powerful brakes.
High-revving and highly emotional naturally aspirated engine
At the heart of both models is the new four-litre six-cylinder boxer engine. The naturally aspirated engine is based on the same engine family as the turbo engines in the current 911 Carrera model series. The new high-revving engine generates 309kW (420hp) – 35hp more than in the GT4 predecessor models. The third generation of the Spyder even has 45hp more. It delivers a maximum torque of 420 newton metres at between 5,000 and 6,800rpm.
The manual transmission sports cars can both break the 300km/h barrier: the 718 Spyder has a top speed of 301 km/h, whilst the 718 Cayman GT4 can reach 304 km/h. Both models accelerate to 100 km/h in 4.4 seconds from a standing start.
The fascinating character of this naturally aspirated engine boasts linear power delivery and the immediate response of a GT engine. It has a maximum engine speed of 8,000rpm. The unparalleled boxer sound remains untouched. New additions include technical highlights such as adaptive cylinder control. In part-load operation, it temporarily interrupts the injection process in one of the two cylinder banks, thus reducing fuel consumption.
Piezo injectors are used for direct fuel injection for the first time ever in a high-revving engine. They split each injection process into up to five individual injections. This supports a complete – and therefore emissions-friendly – combustion process. A variable intake system with two resonance valves ensures optimum gas exchange in the cylinders.
Aerodynamic efficiency: more downforce, the same drag
Among the striking features of the 718 Cayman GT4 is the comprehensively improved aerodynamics concept. It produces up to 50 percent more downforce, without adversely affecting drag – proof of outstanding efficiency. The aerodynamics of both models benefit enormously from the newly designed single-chamber arch rear silencer: it creates space in the rear section for a functional diffuser, which accounts for a good 30 percent of the downforce at the rear axle in the 718 Cayman GT4.
The fixed rear wing is also marked by greater efficiency: it produces around 20 percent more downforce compared with its predecessor. This corresponds to an additional downforce of twelve kilograms at 200 km/h. The front section, which is optimised in the GT style, maintains the aerodynamic balance with a large front spoiler lip and so-called air curtains. The latter calm the air flow along the front wheels.
Porsche 718 Spyder: an open-top road sport car with lightweight convertible top
The new 718 Spyder is a pure machine for driving pleasure with a lightweight convertible top that can cope with top speeds. It continues the history of such famous Roadsters as the Porsche 550 Spyder and the 718 RS 60 Spyder.
Open or closed, it thrills with a captivating silhouette. The roof is suitable for everyday use and can be stowed away under the boot lid in just a few steps. Unlike the GT4, the 718 Spyder has a rear spoiler that comes up automatically at 120 km/h. Thanks to the functional diffuser, it is the first model in the Boxster family to generate aerodynamic downforce at the rear axle.
High-performance GT chassis: optimised for best dynamics
For the first time ever, the 718 Spyder benefits from the high-performance GT chassis of the 718 Cayman GT4. With its superior cornering dynamics, it provides an emotional driving experience. Its further refined lightweight spring-strut front and rear axles make use of racing technologies. The direct connection to the chassis is partially by means of ball joints.
The Porsche Active Suspension Management damping system with 30 mm lower suspension lowers the centre of gravity and improves lateral dynamics potential. It is specifically designed for use on the racetrack and makes the handling characteristics of the 718 Cayman GT4 sharper. The 718 Spyder also benefits from this design. The Porsche Stability Management (PSM) operates with even greater sensitivity and precision here but can optionally also be deactivated in two steps.
Porsche Torque Vectoring (PTV) with mechanical rear differential lock further enhances the longitudinal and lateral dynamics, cornering performance and driving pleasure. The GT4 also comes with the option of a Clubsport package. This includes a rear steel roll bar and a six-point seatbelt on the driver’s side.
Gripping: powerful brakes, ultra-high-performance tyres
The high-performance brake system in the 718 Spyder and 718 Cayman GT4 provides consistent braking that is suitable for track driving thanks to large aluminium monobloc fixed-caliper brakes. The Porsche Ceramic Composite Brake (PCCB) is also available as an option. One new feature is that the 718 Spyder now runs on ultra-high-performance tyres specially adapted by Porsche. They are part of the overall package that makes the 718 Cayman GT4 fly on the Nürburgring Nordschleife: its lap time on the 20.6-kilometre racetrack is more than ten seconds faster than its predecessor.
In Australia, specifications are improved to include many features as standard. These include tinted Bi-Xenon headlights including Porsche Dynamic Light System, ParkAssist including reversing camera, automatically dimming mirrors with rain sensor, windscreen with grey top-tint, ambient interior lighting, alarm system with interior surveillance, Apple CarPlay, navigation including Porsche Connect, digital radio, cruise control, two-zone climate control and heated seats. In the GT4 Spyder, a heated multi-function steering wheel is also standard in Australia.
The new Porsche 718 Spyder and the 718 Cayman GT4 are available to order now, and will arrive in Australia from Q1 2020. Prices start from $209,000^ for the Spyder and $218,800^ for the Cayman GT4.
^ Prices are manufacturer’s recommended retail prices before statutory on-road and dealer delivery charges, which vary from State to State.