Porsche Purists: Don’t Panic.
Ok, we get that you’ve had an ongoing love affair with Porsches since you were a wee one, curling up in your custom-made 911 Carrera racecar bed. So don’t freak out about what we’re about to tell you regarding the 2014 Porsche 911 GT3 ($130,400). It doesn’t have a manual gearbox. That’s right, for the first time ever, the 911 GT3 will be all automatic, all the time. But chief engineer Andreas Preuninger pleads, “don’t hit us over the head with a baseball bat until you drive it.” Because although there’s no on-the-floor stick, he assures us the new technology will more than make up for it. In fact, the new transmission is said to shift so quickly that the rear-drive GT3 will gain three-quarters of the length of the car with every shift. Off to a good start? Indeed.
This sophisticated supercar will run on a completely redesigned 3.8-liter 6-cylinder boxer engine, with 475 horsepower at 8,250 rpm. Which means you can pounce from 0 to 60 in an astounding 3.3 seconds, and hit a top speed of 195 mph. (If you’re counting, and we know you are, that’s up from last year’s 194 mph.) Also notable in the 2014 GT3 is that it marks the first time Porsche is using active rear-wheel steering. The benefits of rear-wheel steering are twofold. First is a shorter turning radius, since when the car travels below 50 miles per hour, the rear wheels will steer in the opposite direction to the front wheels. When you’re going above 50, the rear and front wheels turn in the same direction, giving the GT3 incredible cornering stability. Look out for the GT3 in November, hopefully in a driveway near you.