The Porsche Boxster and Cayman will forever nip at the heels of their big brother, the 911 Carrera, and perpetuating this tradition are the latest GTS variants, which add yet another arrow to the quiver of the plucky mid-engined platform.

The GTS' performance enhancements boost horsepower by a mere 15 and shave a tenth from 0 to 60, but Porsche's clever product planners and engineers have stuck to their familiar formula in making the Cayman GTS more desirable than the Boxster for dyed-in-the-wool performance enthusiasts. More on that shortly.

Laps around Spain's Circuito Mallorca RennArena and the nearby Serra de Tramuntana mountain range would shed further light on how the GTS differentiates itself from lesser Caymans.

Driving Notes
  • While the 3.4-liter flat-six's 340-horsepower output shows nominal gains over the S model (edging out the Boxster GTS by 25 hp), the Cayman GTS' standard Sport Chrono package's Sport+ setting enables the engine, transmission, and chassis to switch from responsive and agile to razor sharp and athletic. Without testing the GTS back-to-back against an S, it's hard to gauge whether that tenth of a second from 0-60 is particularly noticeable – but our instinct says, "No."
  • There isn't exactly gut-wrenching power down low, but to rev the Cayman's six-cylinder to its 7,800-rpm power peak is to be won over with its eager pull and motivated grunt.
  • Dropping the Boxster's soft top opens up a new palette of engine sounds to satisfy your inner boy racer, and the GTS version of that model enhances that experience exponentially thanks to its retuned exhaust. But helping the hardtop's argument is the first-ever implementation of the "Sound Symposer" in the lineup, which trickles down from the 911 and uses acoustic tuning to pipe engine intake sounds into the cockpit. The experience makes the Cayman and Boxster GTS feel even faster, and can be modulated using the Sport Exhaust button near the shifter. Best of all, you don't have to drop the top to enjoy the enhanced auditory experience.
  • The Cayman GTS has just about the most direct and immediate handling you'll find on a production car, and you needn't hit the track to be struck by its crystalline steering, glued-to-the-road feeling and intuitive responsiveness. Although the Boxster is quite stiff and feels very solid for a convertible, the Cayman GTS furthers that feeling of sharpness by virtue of its roof structure.
  • Unless you indulge in amateur racing on a regular basis, the only reasons to opt for ceramic brakes are: (1) you've got massive amounts of money burning a hole in your wallet, and (2) you vehemently hate brake dust. The standard steel brakes work great, with excellent feel and imperceptible fade.
  • Though damping rates are unchanged, the suspension has been dropped a nominal 10 millimeters, which looks a bit meaner and gives the GTS a more hunkered-down feel thanks to its lower center of gravity. Backed up with the adaptability (both manually and automatically) of PASM, the suspension manages to deliver a smooth ride over potholes, and tenacious grip on the track.
  • Counterintuitively, Porsche charges more for the hardtop Cayman GTS than it does for its folding-topped counterpart: starting price is $75,200 – $79,160 for a PDK-equipped model – while the Boxster undercuts the coupe by $1,700 in both versions.
  • As you might suspect, it's virtually impossible to step into a Cayman for anywhere close to its base MSRP. Not only are the interior and trim temptations numerous (18-way sport seats, $3,025; infotainment with surround sound, $3,990; GTS trim with contrast stitching, $3,680), there are also opportunities for performance upgrades (torque vectoring, $1,320; ceramic brakes, $7,400). At least the GTS models bundle about $16,000 worth of goodies including PASM (Porsche Active Suspension Management), Sport Chrono package, sport exhaust, 20-inch wheels, PDLS (Porsche Dynamic Light System) and blacked-out trim for an $11,400 premium over the S version
The GTS is expensive, no doubt. But as a new flagship for the Cayman lineup, it delivers even more focused performance in a package that's easy to live with every day. We can't wait to see how much further Porsche pushes this platform, but until a higher-performance variant is released (one is rumored, possibly dubbed GT3 or GT4), the GTS offers the range's sweetest spot between outright potency and daily comfort.


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  • 51 Comments
      johnnythemoney
      • 7 Months Ago
      I might suggest some rubber around those wheels.
        tinsulpop
        • 7 Months Ago
        @johnnythemoney
        Yeah, more rubber and less goofy spokes :) Other than that, love it.
      Sonia
      • 1 Month Ago

      Such a nice looking Porsche, best to date! IMO almost competes with visually with the new Jaguar F-Type :p. Especially in white like here (http://jalopnik.com/the-jaguar-f-type-s-coupe-so-good-it-almost-makes-the-1632020362). 

      Koenigsegg
      • 7 Months Ago
      waste of money
      Joey Franklin
      • 7 Months Ago
      If i had $86k to spend on a car it would be a hard choice between this and the Jaguar F Type Coupe S. The Jag would be more comfortable and slightly more practical maybe but i'd be tempted to give it up for the sharp handling of the Cayman.
        Kelly Hatcher
        • 7 Months Ago
        @Joey Franklin
        yeah your forgetting reliability bud
        Kelly Hatcher
        • 7 Months Ago
        @Joey Franklin
        yeah your forgetting reliability bud
        pavsterrocks
        • 7 Months Ago
        @Joey Franklin
        Yeah I'd buy a Jag if I was buying a new car in that price range every couple of years and was already bored with all other more established models. Buy a Porsche if it's going to be your only purchase of this caliber in a decade or two.
        Kelly Hatcher
        • 7 Months Ago
        @Joey Franklin
        yeah your forgetting reliability bud
      Koenigsegg
      • 7 Months Ago
      waste of money
      Bernard
      • 7 Months Ago
      God. Now build a Cayman Turbo S that can keep pace with a 911 Turbo S. Stop holding the Cayman back just to protect the 911.
        itschrislee
        • 7 Months Ago
        @Bernard
        Definitely agree with your statement. I know Porsche is being very conservative with the cayman. The car has a lot of potential.
        Bernard
        • 7 Months Ago
        @Bernard
        *Edit, I meant to say "good" not "God"
        Lab Ninja
        • 7 Months Ago
        @Bernard
        GT4, good sir. Just wait.
      btulliani
      • 7 Months Ago
      Best looking Porsche bar none!
      SethG
      • 7 Months Ago
      This car and its options are well outside the range that I will pay for a car. I still appreciate what it can do. What I'm not sure I can appreciate is 18-way adjustable seats. At what point do you finish adjusting your seat and start driving?
        ScottT
        • 7 Months Ago
        @SethG
        In terms of straight line speed (acceleration/top speed) this and the base 991 are nearly identical. In terms of handling, the Cayman GTS will beat the base 991 in pretty much every way (ultimate traction, slalom, track). The 991 does probably give you a bit of a softer ride and more interior room if you need it; but if you are just looking for performance then it's the Cayman.
          karlInSanDiego
          • 7 Months Ago
          @ScottT
          Why because it's lighter or because mid-engine? C&D proved at least at the GT3 level, the 911 is still better handling car. Maybe not for the uninitiated though. http://www.caranddriver.com/features/the-mid-vs-rear-engine-debate-porsche-cayman-r-vs-911-gt3-feature
          Cayman
          • 7 Months Ago
          @ScottT
          Yes, because it's mid engine and lighter. Not to mention it has a stiffer chassis. That's a GT-friggin-3 not a base Carrera. And it was previous generation of each. Even so, all it proved was that the previous GT3 is slightly faster than the Previous Cayman R in terms of handling. Most of their tests weren't solely handling either; slalom and racetrack have a huge HP factor.
      carguy1701
      • 7 Months Ago
      "But helping the hardtop's argument is the first-ever implementation of the "Sound Symposer" in the lineup, which trickles down from the 911 and uses acoustic tuning to pipe engine intake sounds into the cockpit." How exactly does this system work? Does it use a sound tube, like teh current Mustang GT and the Toyobaru, piping the engine sound via the audio system speakers (like BMW), or a combination of the two? It sounds like the first one.
      postpast
      • 6 Months Ago
      340hp out of a 3.4L. Anyone else here feel that Porsche could get 100hp/L out of a old tractor if they had a little bailors twine. Limiting the Cayman against the 911 may have made sence if the Corvette didn't exist. Even the new 4-cylinder Mustang may produce similar numbers to this GTS. Can this 85-100 G Porsche beat the 44G Chevy SS sedan around a track?
        Mpowered
        • 6 Months Ago
        @postpast
        I'm guessing the answer to your question is yes... The Chevy SS sedan posted 4.9 0-60 time according to motortrend: http://www.motortrend.com/roadtests/1312_2014_chevrolet_ss_first_test/. The Cayman S w/ PDK and sport chrono will do 0-60 in around 4.4, about 1/2 second faster, so added horsepower on the GTS can't hurt. This is just straight line acceleration. The Cayman GTS weighs close to 900 lbs lighter and has lower COG... I think it will do fine against the Chevy SS Sedan around any track, drag strips included.
      William Weisberg
      • 7 Months Ago
      Lotto Gods, please pick my numbers and I promise not go over 155 MPH.
      JJ
      • 7 Months Ago
      I never liked the first generation cayman, this ones deferent in many ways, I looks great and getting the prober packages. I would seriously consider one over a 991, something that couldn't be said the first time around.
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