DRIVING THE NEXT-GENERATION: 'On all possible levels, the Cayman sets new standards,' writes Egmont Sippel as he drives the new-generation Porsche. Image: Wheels24 / Janine van der Post
Wheels24 correspondent Egmont Sippel names his top 10 cars of 2016. Below is his review of the Porsche 718 Cayman.
Cape Town - What’s this? A Porsche only in fourth place on my list of top cars of 2016? And a Cayman at that?
Because it was only yesteryear, was it not, that the Cayman GTS toppled the stripped-out Cayman R as the world’s second-best sports car, all things considered; the Porsche 911 GT3 RS remained top of the pile.
Proper racing machine
And it was only two years ago, that the Cayman’s soft top brother, the Boxster, inherited the old 911’s 3.8-liter flat-6 to make it an open-topped Spyder version of the Cayman GT4, by then the world’s new best sports car, all things considered; the GT3 RS excluded (and ditto for the Spyder, which could roar and sing and bleat and blat and blitz like nothing else on this planet, bar Jaguar’s V8 F-Type).
Point is, that the Cayman is, well, just about the best sports car in the world. Or the second best if you include the GT3 RS; I’m not going to say that again.
READ: Top 10 cars of 2016 : Type R, Cayman, Rolls-Royce Dawn and more!
So, why ain’t the new 718 Cayman/Boxster, now with more power and punch from smaller 2.0- and 2.5-litre units - courtesy of turbo kick - why ain’t it Number one on today’s list?
Well, turbo giveth. And turbo taketh.
Setting new standards
Virtually on all possible levels, the Cayman - especially with S power - sets new standards.
But the inimitable naturally-aspirated flat-six soundtrack has been substituted by something that falls somewhat flat on its flat-four turboed face.
READ: Decoding the 718 - New Porsche Cayman, Boxster unleashed in SA
OK, it’s not bad for what it is, especially when you enter real Porsche territory and hit the higher revs and registers. The wail is gone, but there’s plenty of volume. It is loud. It fills the cabin.
Yet, it fails to delight like it once did, or like it still does via the rousingly emotional hell and brimstone of, let’s say, the naturally-aspirated Boxster Spyder.
Or... oh well, you know what I’m going to say. There’s a “3” in there, somewhere.