In an earlier post we discussed the rumored "Cayman GT4" and why the motoring media has probably gotten it all wrong. They're saying it will be a 400 horsepower, mid-motor GT3 for about $100 grand. That's arbitrary conjecture, and if I'm honest, just plain absurd. It's absurd mostly because Porsche has proven time and time again that they aren't interested in having brand-infighting, not wanting to see the Cayman compete directly with the 911.
Now that we've laid our reasons why we think both that the pre-production car we've been seeing in the press is not a Cayman GT4, and that a GT4 is not likely to occur any time soon, let's delve into why Porsche really should build a Cayman GT4.
4. Reasons Porsche Should Build A Cayman GT4
1. The primary reason is that it would just be awesome. Porsche hasn't always been rational, and has occasionally broken from their stoic German mold to produce a car that just beleaguers belief (918' GT2 RS, 4 liter RS, Carrera GT, 959, 968 Turbo RS, etc.)
2. The level of media coverage that a Porsche like this could garner for the brand would be spectacular. Everyone in the automotive media would go absolutely gaga over a track-spec Cayman. Cars that are well received by the press, especially enthusiast cars, are generally well regarded by enthusiasts.
3. A limited run Porsche like a Cayman GT4 would be snapped up in record time, both by collectors looking to fill out their low-volume Porsche portfolio, and by track-day nut-jobs. Because of this low-volume sales frenzy, the dealer networks would love the GT4, as they could tack on all sorts of arbitrary markups. The engineers would love to build such a Porsche, as it would allow them to flex their intellectual muscle to create a car that was simultaneously all things fast, fun to drive, competitive in the market, and extremely profitable; Porsche's accountants would love it.
4. More than anything, though, this extra-hot Cayman would be a paddock favorite. It is no surprise that there has recently been an explosion in the track-day market, and existing track-weapons have only continued to increase in power and drop in lap times. Competing against comers like Lotus' supercharged Evora S, a hardcore track-focused Cayman could simply walk away. Even when winning in local competition, or at a track day among friends, people tend to notice when a car punches above its weight class. A GT4 Cayman could take the fight directly to more powerful and more expensive Ferrari and Aston Martin competition.
5. Don't Forget About Porsche Motorsport
GT4, like GT3, is a name that exists for a reason, and that reason is racing. If Porsche were to create a Cayman GT4, it would be just one more outlet for their motorsport department to prove they are the best minds in racing. Currently a small international championship, GT4 has been growing in recent years, even gaining a few national sub-championships along the way. With competition from Aston Martin's Vantage, BMW's Z4, Ford's Mustang, Ginetta's G50, Maserati's Gran Turismo, Nissan's 370Z, and Lotus' Evora, a Cayman GT4 could gain quite a following in a championship like this. If built right (and let's be honest, when does Porsche not build them right?) a 981 GT4 should easily walk away with the championship.
With FIA GT racing gradually trending toward less expensive championships, it would make sense for Porsche to back a racing series like GT4 by building and homologating a car specifically for privateers to race and win with. Current GTE regulations are very expensive, and FIA GT3 could soon take over as the top-level of international GT racing if GTE were to suffer an exodus. As GT3 moves into the lead position, GT4 could take over as the privateer's favorite series of record. Manufacturer support from Porsche could certainly expedite that process.
So there you have it. We don't think Porsche will be building a Cayman GT4 any time soon, but if they did, it would instantly be a hit with the media, the buying public, collectors, racers, and dealers. With luck, they'll build the Cayman that the GTS should have been. If only there were a way to convince them...
UPDATE: 10/27/2014 - Appears someone listened and we were wrong. Looks like Porsche might have accidentally confirmed the Cayman GT4.
Other Porsche Blog Posts You Will Enjoy
Why the “Cayman GT4″ Isn’t Going To Happen
Porsche Cayman Gets A Drive Through Blessing At Buddhist Temple In China
Watch Porsche Prove The New Cayman GTS Handles Like A Go-Kart
Video: Joe Rogan’s Sharkwerks Porsche GT3 RS Defines Perfection