Porsche unveiled its 911 GT3 at the 2006 Geneva motor show in Switzerland. The two-seater coupe is the second major car Porsche released at Geneva – the other is the 911 Turbo. Though the GT3 is best known in New Zealand for its exploits in the GT3 Cup motor racing series it can also be used as a normal, everyday road car.
The new version is powered by a 305kW (415bhp) 3.6-litre flat-twin engine developing a specific output of 84.7kW (115.3bhp) per litre. The six-cylinder engine reaches its maximum output at 7600rpm. The rev limiter cuts in at 8400rpm – 200 revs higher than on the previous model. An optimised airflow rate is said to considerably improve performance, using a variable intake system with a throttle valve enlarged from 76 to 82mm. The exhaust system is a low back-pressure design. The GT3’s revised six-speed transmission has very short gearlever travel and the lower ratios of gears two to six complement the engine characteristics perfectly. New for the GT3 is a change-up display, which lights up on the rev counter shortly before the relevant engine speed is reached. It provides an additional signal at the best time to change gear. Porsche says the GT3 accelerates from 0 to 100km/h in 4.3 seconds, and reaches 160km/h from a standing start in 8.7 seconds. Its top speed is 310km/h (194mph).
The new GT3 has an active chassis for the first time. Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM) offers two sporty chassis in one: the basic configuration is largely similar to that of the previous model and is suitable for driving on varying road surfaces. In Sport mode, the system switches to harder damping, giving the car improved dynamics on the racetrack. The GT3 is equipped with a comprehensive traction package, which includes standard 19-inch sports tyres and a mechanical limited slip differential. In addition, the new electronic Traction Control – adapted from the Carrera GT high-performance sports car – ensures safe traction under all driving conditions. It features traction-slip and drag-torque control functions, and can be switched off completely.
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