2018 Porsche 911 GT2 RS Review

LOVE IT

  • Ultimate Porsche 911
  • Factory-ready, lightweight track car
  • Unique styling
LEAVE IT

  • Not yet confirmed
  • Very expensive
  • Production will likely be severely limited

The Porsche 911 has stood as the ultimate sports car for more than 50 years, but the latest 991 body style is proof that Porsche still has plenty of tricks up its sleeve. With the refreshed 991.2 having already debuted in late 2015, the automotive world is now one step closer to the return of the extreme 911: the GT2 RS.

As is usually the case with any factory-built, race-ready sports car, the Porsche 911 GT2 RS made strong impressions when it was introduced in 2011, and as we’ve seen from the current 991 lineup, this is definitely the best 911 ever built. What this means for the upcoming GT2 RS has yet to be seen, but reports indicate that the hyper 911 will go on sale for the 2018 model year.

Until then, all we have is a bunch of photos of an early prototype playing in the snow and a rendering penned with details taken from the current 911 Turbo. As always, we’ve put all the information we already know together in a speculative review, just so you know what to expect from Stuttgart’s most powerful 911 yet.

Updated 03/09/2016: Our spy photographers caught the upcoming GT2 RS our for a first testing session. The model is expected to be unveiled in late 2017.

Spy Shots

MARCH 9, 2016 – PORSCHE 911 GT2 RS BEGINS TESTING SESSIONS
Porsche 911 GT2 RS
Porsche 911 GT2 RS

Porsche 911 GT2 RS

Exterior

Expect to see a new front bumper with redesigned outlets for improved cooling, a bigger splitter with side winglets, and a black hood

Much like the previous GT2 RS, the new turbocharged track car will be based on the 911 Turbo. As seen in our rendering, we expect it to borrow several features from the 991.2 Turbo, including including the front fascia, beefed-up rear fenders with large air outlets, and most of the rear end. Even though the early prototype is heavily based on the standard Turbo except for the mildly revised aerodynamics of the front bumper and the new rear diffuser with round exhaust pipes, the actual production model will receive significantly more changes.

Expect to see a new front bumper with redesigned outlets for improved cooling, a bigger splitter with side winglets, and a black hood. On the sides, it should feature beefier side skirts, aero-enhanced mirrors, and “GT2 RS” lettering. Around back, look for a larger wing than the Turbo’s (but smaller than the GT3’s), a race-inspired diffuser, and a new radiator grille. Of course, most body panels will be made from carbon-fiber and CFRP, while the standard wheels will be replaced by lightweight, race-bred rollers.

Interior

Porsche 911 GT3 RS

Note: 2016 Porsche 911 GT3 RS interior shown.

Like the exterior, the interior of the 2018 Porsche 911 GT2 RS will focus on improving track comfort and reducing weight. As an example of just how much of a race-ready track car the GT2 RS was, it could be equipped with a factory roll cage and six-point driver’s racing harness, and it could be ordered without air conditioning or audio system components. The previous car even had fabric interior door pulls instead of conventional handles to create even more of a race car interior, while saving more weight.

Drivetrain

Porsche 911 GT2 RS

Output should sit closer to the 700-horsepower mark backed by more than 550 pound-feet of twist

There are no official details about the Porsche 911 GT2 RS’ drivetrain, but the previous version produced a whopping 612 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque from its twin-turbo, 3.6-liter flat-six. With a curb weight of just about 3,000 pounds, the previous 911 GT2 RS was able to accelerate from 0-60 in 3.5 seconds, hit a top speed of 205 mph, and lap the Nurburgring in just 7:18! With these accomplishments, it will be exciting to see what types of numbers the GT2 RS will be capable of. The 2011 GT2 RS had rear-wheel drive and was offered with a six-speed manual only. Of the numerous weight-reduction components, the 911 GT2 RS used a single-mass flywheel that cut weight by almost 18 pounds, and a titanium exhaust system with mufflers that weighed half as much as the 911’s conventional mufflers.

Expect similar improvements in the new GT2 RS coupled with a revised version of the current twin-turbo, 3.8-liter flat six. Output should sit closer to the 700-horsepower mark backed by more than 550 pound-feet of twist. Charging to 60 mph should take less than three seconds, while top speed should be of at least 205 mph. Given that the GT3 and GT3 RS use the PDK transmission, expect the GT2 RS to come with an automatic as well. However, Porsche could offer the six-speed manual from the 911 R as an option to those willing to trade a few tenths to shift their own gears.

Prices

When launched in 2011, the 997 GT2 RS had a price tag of about $245,000 and production was limited to just 500 units. With the return of this finely tuned model, expect the price to remain high and production to remain low. Look for the new GT2 RS to fetch way more than $200,000 and become the most expensive 991-generation 911.

Competition

2015 NISSAN GT-R NISMO

Nissan GT-R Nismo

Like the GT2 RS was (and will be) to the 911, the 2015 Nissan GT-R NISMO stands as the ultimate example of the performance that the GT-R is capable of. The GT-R NISMO backs up its mean-looking appearance with a twin-turbo, 3.8-liter V-6 rated at 591 horsepower and 481 pound-feet that help rocket the supercar from 0-60 in around three seconds and to a top speed of 195 mph. Even with all that power, the Nissan GT-R NISMO still represents a decent value in the supercar world, with a starting price of $149,990, much less than a 911 Turbo.

2015 CHEVROLET CORVETTE Z06

Chevrolet Corvette Z06

Not wanting to be left out of the game, the Chevrolet Corvette Z06 is an extreme version of the Corvette, albeit one that might not be quite up to the challenge of going head-to-head with a 911 GT2 RS. That being said, the Z06 is powered by a 650-horsepower, supercharged V-8 giving this ‘Vette a 0-60 time of 2.9 seconds and a top speed of 200 mph. The C7 Corvette Z06 might not be the track monster that the GT-R NISMO is and the next-gen 911 GT2 RS will be, but its price tag gives it incredible bang for the buck. At $79,400 before options, the Z06 costs less than a standard 911 Carrera.

Conclusion

Porsche 911 GT2 RS

As always, Porsche has kept 911 (and sports car) enthusiasts busy with all of its various model introductions, but the new 911 GT2 RS will be a monster of a track car that is expected to be one of the last versions of the current 991 body style. Like the previous GT2 RS, the 2018 model will deliver race car-like performance in a street-legal coupe, while the limited production will almost guarantee that these cars will be tucked away by collectors.

(topspeed.com)

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