For most people, there are certain vehicles that just define the epitome of perfection: whether it’s a classic car or a new model, each of us has a vehicle that just makes us go “wow”! It doesn’t depend on how deep your pockets, but more-so the emotions that it invokes in us at a certain time. If you’ve read my previous reviews, you’ll know that the 1987 Buick Grand National GNX is one of my most favourite vehicles – domestic of course.But if not restricted to North American brands, then Porsche is one of my all-time favourites, regardless of price. I don’t know if it’s the purr of the engine, the perfection in balance, or just the emblem itself on the front of the car – Porsche oozes elegance and performance. Recently, when I was given the opportunity to drive the new 2015 Cayman GTS, let’s just say that Porsche didn’t have to twist my arm to get behind the wheel for a few days.
The Porsche Cayman was first launched in 2006, and for most, it was pretty much a Boxster sans la roof. Porsche had hoped that the entry Cayman would be a nice fit between the Boxster and the 911 – well, I think the attempt was not all successful. The original Cayman wasn’t really appealing in its design, and I’m not the only one who shared this sentiment. Most people, well men, I spoke with thought the original Cayman was more of a “female” car: we’re not saying it was an ugly car, but just that it lacked the aggressive look of a Porsche. Now, enter the new Cayman GTS and be prepared to be blown away completely, literally and figuratively.
In terms of sheer looks, the new 2015 Cayman GTS is absolutely gorgeous – the front end is similar to the 911, but has its own characteristic lines. A new fascia at the front and rear, larger body overall, and slight modifications to the curves, give the car a very svelte look. I really like the low nose and the crisp lines; this is no longer a “girly” car. In fact, while stopped at a red light on 152nd in Surrey, a fellow Porsche driver (he had an older 911), pulled up beside me, rolled down his windows and complimented the look of the new Cayman. His exact words were, “Man, they finally made the Cayman look nice. Nice car you have!” Who was I to tell him that it wasn’t really my car, right? Yep, the new Cayman is definitely eye candy.
Step inside the vehicle and you’ll notice the exterior elegance carries forth. The instrument and dash, complete with a large tach, are clearly driver oriented. The digital portion of the cluster is beautifully interlaced with the analog portion. Drivers have the ability to toggle between various screens, from mileage and fuel economy to maximum G-forces. When you have a car the monitors G-forces, you know you have a serious driving machine. The seats are beautiful, comfortable, and provide exceptional support, especially when you’re pulling some serious G-forces!
The heart of the Cayman GTS is its 3.4 liter flat-six engine. Naturally aspirated, this motor puts out 340 hp and 280 lb-ft of torque, which is way above the Cayman S, and only slightly below its bigger brother, the 911 Carrera. The Cayman GTS manages runs to 60 in around 4.5 seconds, if equipped with the PDK. My tester came with the standard 6-speed manual – I’d be torn between the manual and PDK because both are just spectacular.
Now, let’s get to the fun part, driving the new Cayman GTS. Last year I drove the 911 C4S and I found it to be an amazing car. But in all honesty, I like the Cayman GTS a lot better. This could be Porsche’s best car. The mid-engine design makes weight distribution perfect, and who knows this better than the engineers at Porsche. On some secluded roads in the Fraser Valley, I was able to throw the car into corners. With both hands on the steering wheel, I was tempted to push the Cayman even further, but thought I’d save it for the track. Steering is crisp and refined; prior to driving the Jaguar F-Type Coupe and Cayman GTS, I was not completed sold on electric steering; thanks to Porsche, I’m now a believer and convert. Feedback from the car is so precise that as a driver, I was completed connected to the car – almost like Neo when he was plugged into the Matrix. The manual gearbox is effortless, with the gears just falling into place as soon as you depress the clutch. This car loves to be driven.
Then there’s something about the sound of the mid-engine that’s’ music to the ears…it’s almost intoxicating. As it should be, the Porsche cabin is loud when in Sport Mode, so Bluetooth calls aren’t clear, but who would want to be making calls when driving this car?
So the question will arise, why buy the Cayman GTS over the S? Well, it’s more than just the GTS badging itself. The performance upgrades, modifications in styling cues and accents, and upgraded wheels are alone worth more than the GTS package – yes, if you were to price out the upgrades, it’s about $5k more than the stock GTS package. And consider this, with only 10 less hp, you’re getting a vehicle that is very similar to the 911 Carrera, which costs $10K more.
The 2015 Porsche Cayman GTS is an incredible vehicle. You can drive it on a daily basis, or to get your speed rush, strap on a helmet and head to the track, where it feels at home. I loved driving the Porsche, but hated the fact that I had to keep it under the limit.