Driving is in Porsche’s DNA and always has been since the first models rolled out of Germany. That aspect is still part of the brand today and it is proudly on display with the new Porsche 911 R. Gone are the high-tech driving aids, self-shifting gearboxes, and whirling turbochargers and in comes the purists recipe for fun.
The Porsche 911 R is dedicated to driving engagement and performance through traditional methods of increasing overall performance. The overall weight of the car is only 3,020 lbs. – a generous 110 lbs. lighter than the 911 GT3 RS, making it the lightest in the model line.
That low overall weight in the Porsche 911 R comes from the carbon fiber construction of the hood and fenders paired with a magnesium roof. The rear windows and windscreen are made from lightweight plastic as opposed to glass while portions of the sound insulation was removed. The rear bench seating was deleted and the air conditioning and radio/audio systems are optional for the sake of weight.
Visually the Porsche 911 R is a mash-up of goodies to create a perfect masterpiece. The chassis and lightweight components come from the 911 GT3 along with the front and rear fascias. Instead of a fixed rear wing spoiler, the Porsche 911 R utilizes a retractable spoiler similar to the 911 Carrera’s while a model-specific underbody diffuser sits beneath and integrates the lightweight titanium exhaust. Porsche logos pair with a choice of red or green striping over the mid-section of the sports car. A new spoiler lip reduces lift at the front axle.
Under that rear lid sits a 4.0-liter, naturally-aspirated flat-six engine that produces 500 horsepower at 8,250 RPM and 339 lb-ft. of torque at 6,250 RPM. The engine was developed in the company’s motorsport workshop and is the latest addition to the line of naturally-aspirated, high-revving engines found in the 911 GT3 and GT3 RS.
The engine in the Porsche 911 R is only part of what makes it so special. The new high-revving flat-six is mated to a six-speed manual gearbox – the only one available in the 911 R. No dual-clutch here, just a short-shifting sports transmission utilizing a clutch and optional single-mass flywheel. A rear-axle steering system comes standard as does a mechanical rear differential.
The potent, rear-wheel drive Porsche 911 R is capable of accelerating to 62 mph in just 3.8 seconds and reaching a top speed of 201 mph.
Helping to bring the Porsche 911 R back down from those speeds is a the Porsche Ceramic Composite Brake (PCCB) system as a standard feature with 410 mm front and 390 mm rear discs. Lightweight 20-inch forged wheels with a center-locking mechanism also come standard and feature a matte aluminum finish with ultra high performance tires. An optional lift system that raises the ride height by 30 mm at the touch of a button to overcome obstacles is also available.
Inside, the Porsche 911 R is all about the driver and cutting weight. Carbon fiber bucket seats with Pepita tartan fabric center panels similar to those in the 911 models of the 1960s greets driver and passenger. An “R-specific” 360 mm sport steering wheel faces the driver while the R-specific short-throw shifter sits to their side. Carbon fiber trim decorates the interior and a special limited-edition numbered aluminum badge is positioned on the passenger’s side. To save weight even further, pull strips are used in place of door handles.
The new Porsche 911 R will be available in May of 2016 with a USA-specific price to be announced at a later date.
Porsche 911 R Specifications
Displacement: 4.0 liters
Number of Cylinders: Flat-six
Maximum Horsepower: 500 / 368 kW at 8,250 RPM
Maximum Torque: 339 lb-ft. / 460 Nm at 6,250
Type: Six-speed manual sport
Differential: Rear mechanical
Acceleration 0-62 mph: 3.8 seconds
Top Speed: 201 mph / 323 km/h
Porsche 911 R Gallery