Watching the footage of the Manthey GT2 RS MR through the Hockenheim GP track makes you realize just how far cars have come in the last twenty years. Whereas its forebear, the 996 GT2, was a snappy car which didn’t suffer the sort of abuse some throw at their cars gently, this latest offering is much more a pussycat. A really fast one. Despite its outrageous power output, the Manthey GT2 RS handles itself with composure, grace, and reassurance. No wonder it’s constantly rewriting records.
While it is a modified car, it’s been altered in a way few road-going cars are. Rather than fettle with the powerplant to drag another hundred horsepower, Manthey focused on the qualities that allow for repeatable, hard, consistent lapping. A sharpened front end courtesy of canards, a bigger rear wing for more stability at speed, lighter wheels for better composure over bumps, and tailored coilovers to handle the undulations of the real world are all part of the package.
In fact, the powerplant wasn’t altered to produce more overall power, but the addition of a secondary water tank for the intercooler sprayer system was added to ensure the driver is given the full 700 horsepower until the gas tank empties.
Even without a bigger power output number, it fires forward with savage acceleration that the Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 R tires help ensure. Propulsion out of corners is so wild you have to wonder how components aren’t constantly snapping, and the power is relentless. Still, watching the onboard, the MR’s other qualities seem to stand out more somehow.
Few road cars can brake quite like the MR with Christian Gebhardt behind the wheel. At the end of the straight, he stands on the brakes and sheds 120 miles per hour in just a few seconds (1:02). Thanks big aero for some of that grip. A different underbody floor, and aero curtains in the front wheel arches, gurney flap on the engine lid, different wing endplates, a larger wing at a steeper angle, taller wing supports, and a bigger diffuser all help it look so at-ease when carrying these wild speeds. Most will balk at the $103,000 price, but the level of support and stability this car has is beyond the realm of most street cars.
Perhaps the greatest demonstration of its assets in one area is through the fast Mobil 1 corner (2:10) and then into the technical stadium section. It’s equally impressive in fast and slow sections, and the way which it allows Gebhardt to nibble every curb without setbacks is just incredible. Unfazed in any type of corner or situation, the GT2 RS MR rounds the Hockenheim GP circuit in just 01:43.47.
It might be the best all-rounded streetable track car on sale today. Though the cost of upgrades alone could buy a house in some places, watching this footage will make you think renting isn’t so bad.