When Porsche slapped the R badged on this slightly lighter, slightly faster but in no way extreme and race honed version of the Cayman it made many evo staff very angry. But not, it must be said, angry enough to disqualify the R from eCoTY because behind the badge is an intelligently honed version of what is already Porsche’s most sweetly balanced car.
The extra power is welcome, even if it’s only 9bhp, and a 55kg weight saving is always good, even if most buyers will take a 15kg hit by choosing to put the air-con and stereo back in. If that makes the Cayman R sound silly, remember that it has proper weight saving measures like aluminium doors and lighter wheels, and that the suspension has been dropped by 20mm to the benefit of handling. As Nick Trott concluded when he drove the R for the first time, it really is a ‘phenomenally capable sports car’ (evo 156) and that’s enough for the eCoTY committee to overlook that needless use of the R badge.