Porsche 911 GT3: Back to the future
THERE’S an old automotive cliché about what a villain like Darth Vader would drive. It usually means looking for cars with an all-black or dark theme.
So what would a hero drive? What would Superman sit behind the wheel of? It might just be the 2022 Porsche 911 GT3. While Superman’s Clark Kent human persona might have a problem affording a six-figure car on his Daily Planet reporter salary, he could probably call in a small financial favour from fellow Justice League member, the billionaire Bruce Wayne aka Batman.
Every Porsche has links to the company’s motorsports past, but none more so than the 911. On the GT3, there’s no mistaking its on-track heritage. The low purposeful stance over its staggered 20-inch front and 21-inch rear, centre lock wheels requires an optional nose lift mechanism to clear sleeping policemen. Behind those wheels are satellite dish-sized brake rotors.
The classic taut 911 lines flow from front to back, melding into the high-wide arches at the rear. This is not a car for the shy as the aero package is ripped straight from their race programme. Countering its aggression is the more subtle but just as effective front lip and side skirts. The rear diffuser is broken up by a pair of exhausts the diameter of a shotgun barrel. Placed strategically are vents for cooling and further high-speed airflow management. The GT3 looks like a race car for the road because it is, so it’s not for the shy at heart, especially when purchased in one of the colours like the Shark Blue on Jamaica Observer’s Auto‘s test model.
Inside is the same, typical 911 with elements of pure motorsports. The instrumentation is familiar, just that the Porsche centre tachometer proudly goes to 10, with 9,000 rpm red line. Alcantara replaces leather and carbon fibre is abound. The seats are fixed buckets bearing both the former discussed materials.
They would be the centrepiece for any car, if not for the lack of rear seats in the GT3. In its place is a half roll cage, should anyone question pedigree, purpose or use case. Still, the cabin keeps the creature comforts a Porsche should have, BOSE stereo, modern infotainment, climate control, a few power functions and even cruise control. Seating position is race car perfect, able to hold the occupants in at any of the velocity ranges the 911 GT3 is easily capable of reaching and maintaining. There is some noise as the sound deadening material from the standard car has been ditched in the name of less weight.
Loose seatbelts will bang occasionally on the metal of the roll cage and every mechanical noise known to man can be heard. This doesn’t disqualify the GT3 as a long-distance tourer because drivers will be so engaged all will fade into the background on the intoxicating wail from the naturally aspirated 4-litre boxer engine nestled past the rear wheels.
In NORMAL mode, there’s nothing normal about the GT3. The Alcantara-wrapped steering wheel is laser accurate, with every millimetre of movement registering a response and feedback instilling confidence. Crank things up to SPORT and it makes one wonder why there even is a need for TRACK mode.
The trick is to push past the preconceived limitations of a normal car. After 5,000 rpm, the sensation of speed is mind blowing as the engine whips to its redline like a hot knife through butter all while delivering an unmatched aural experience. In seconds the 911 GT3 downloads its driving information directly to the driver’s spine. The shifts are lighting quick, keeping forward momentum towards the horizon like a magnet in an iron mine. It dispatches corners like Mike Tyson did his opponents in his prime. This, however, is not a sterile experience. The granular control for both throttle and steering means the car is accessible on the lower end of the skill level scale, but can be enjoyed by the track purist and within a few moments the 911 GT3 leaves drivers of all skill levels feeling like a Superman.
MODEL: 2022 Porsche 911 GT3
ENGINE: From the gods
DRIVETRAIN: Lightening fast
SUMMARY: The 911 turned up past 11.