Leaner, meaner and greener: 2018 Porsche 911 GT3 RS revealed



520hp, 9,000rpm, 312km/h top speed, and not a single turbocharger in sight. $819,688 without COE pricing for Singapore

Stuttgart, Germany

Since the nameplate’s first iteration in 2004, each version of the 911 GT3 RS has been a shining beacon for racetrack-focused engineering and a masterpiece in driving dynamics. The outgoing 991.1-generation model continued to embody those ethos, but for one glaring omission: stickers. Well, for 2018, Porsche has reinstated them to the flanks of the 991.2 model, and all’s right with the world once again.

Okay, we kid, for Porsche’s done a lot more than just stick on a decal set to prepare the GT3 RS against the onslaught of hardcore supercars like the Ferrari 488 Pista, Lamborghini Huracan Performante and McLaren 720S.

The company has stuck to the “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” school of thought though so the changes are relatively minor, in line with the other variants of the 911 range.

For starters, there’s a small bump in power for the 4.0-litre, naturally-aspirated flat-six, from 500hp to 520hp. Incidentally that makes this the most powerful nat-asp Porsche ever produced, and was achieved thanks to alterations to the intake, engine management system and the fitment of a titanium exhaust system.

This shaves the 0-100km/h time by a tenth of a second to 3.2 seconds, though top speed remains the same at 312km/h.

That’s no hardship though, as the GT3 RS was never really intended to push the envelope in terms of terminal velocity; rather, it was made to be the ultimate racetrack-carving four-wheeled scalpel, and so many goodies have been borrowed from Porsche Motorsport’s most mental road model, the mighty GT2 RS.

That includes solid ball joints for the suspension arms, tweaks to the rear wheel steering system, and recalibrated spring and damper rates.

Like all previous models bearing the fabled RS badge, extensive measures have been put in place to trim the pounds – on the GT3 RS that includes plastic windows, magnesium roof, fabric door handles and carbonfibre bucket seats.

For an even more hardcore experience, a Weissach Package is optional, which throws in carbonfibre for the roof, front bonnet and anti roll bars, as well as magnesium wheels, to liberate a further 29kg. In this configuration, the GT3 RS weighs in at 1430kg, 30kg lighter than a regular 911 Carrera S.

Pure numbers on paper are a bit meaningless though, so for a more holistic indication of the GT3 RS’ performance, we’ll be eagerly waiting to see how fast Porsche can take it around the Nurburgring.

The revised ‘standard’ GT3 has already set a time of 7:12.7, so the RS will certainly eclipse that; the previous GT3 RS could only manage a 7:20 lap.

Andreas Preuninger, head of Porsche’s GT cars department, has said: “I think it will end up at 7 minutes 5 seconds or something like that. It’s hugely quick.” Given that the GT2 RS was set the exact same target though, yet ended up smashing it with a 6:47.3 lap, we wouldn’t be too surprised if the GT3 RS overachieves as well.

Like the Ferrari 488 Pista, the 911 GT3 RS will be officially unveiled at the Geneva Motorshow.

Order books are open now, with the car’s price at $819,688 without COE and options, though delivery times are to be confirmed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

about the author

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Derryn Wong
Has a keen interest in all things mechanical, technological, animal and mineral. Is particularly fascinated by eco-cars and cars which make no logical sense. An avid motorcyclist and photographer, he also enjoys cats.