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Thursday, December 4, 2008

Cayman vs. 911



I’ve just been driving the new Porsche Cayman S - the one with the new direct-injection engine and the limited-slip diff, the one that’ll now hit 60mph in just 4.9 seconds - out in Spain.

We’ll have a proper in-depth review soon, but for now, here’s what you need to know: it’s unbelievably, unbelievably good - brutally quick, completely useable and just a tiny bit unhinged.

No, the Cayman isn’t a friendly point-and-go sort of car: it makes you drive it properly. Stand on the brakes mid-corner and it’ll happily deposit you into a hedge, but take some time to get to grips with the mid-engined manners and it’s just magically, stunningly good to drive. One of the best ever, I reckon, especially if you get the manual rather than the double-clutch PDK gearbox.

In fact, the Cayman S is so savagely quick - the direct injection gives astonishingly sharp throttle response - and so pure in its handling that I’d take one over a 911 Carrera. No question.

But here’s where I need your help. The guys at Porsche are saying that - despite the general consensus that the Cayman S is now as quick as the Carrera over just about any sort of road - they’re not worried that potential customers might choose it over a 911. Different markets, different people, they say - while they admit the gap between the two ranges has tightened, people considering a 911 won’t look twice at a Cayman.

So what do you think - is Porsche right? Is the 911 just too iconic to make you ever think about a Cayman, no matter how fast? Or would you stoop just a little for a car as good as this?
By Sam Philip from ---> Top Gear

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