A completely redeveloped fifth-generation Porsche 911 GT3 goes on sale near the end of the year, as Porsche celebrates the 50th anniversary of the 911.
The 2014 Porsche 911 GT3 is completely redesigned, with a new chassis, body and engine. It's 55 pounds lighter than the outgoing model and boasts more power, estimated to scream from 0 to 60 mph in just 3.3 seconds.
Compared to the new 911 Carrera S, the new GT3 is 1.7 inches wider and, as before, sports a giant fixed rear wing. Standard wheels are 20 inches, up from 19s on the previous model. And while bigger wheels and tires often sacrifice ride quality, Porsche says the new wheels weigh less.
Powering the 2014 Porsche 911 GT3 is a new 3.8-liter flat six-cylinder engine. It uses direct injection for increased efficiency, and while it's based on the engine used in the current 911 Carrera S, many of the GT3's parts were created especially for that model, including titanium connecting rods and forged pistons. The result is 475 horsepower and 325 pound-feet of torque, up from 435 hp and 317 in the current model. Porsche says the 2014 GT3 has a top speed of 195 mph.
Though lighter, the GT3 appears to be moving away from its purist, club sport roots, with rear-wheel steering and the high-tech PDK in place of a traditional manual gearbox.
Previously available with only a manual transmission, the change to the 7-speed, dual-clutch PDK transmission with paddle shifters represents a major paradigm shift for the GT3. The sequential gearbox will be the only transmission available on the new GT3.
Also new on the 2014 GT3 is a speed-sensitive, active rear steering system. At speeds slower than 30 mph, the rear wheels steer in the opposite direction of the fronts to improve maneuverability. When going faster than 50 mph, the rear wheels point in the same direction as the fronts to help with high-speed cornering and stability.
The 2014 Porsche GT3 is expected to arrive in U.S. dealerships in late 2013 with a starting price of $130,400, plus a $950 destination fee.