Porsche Cayman GTS review (2014-2016)

We drive the new Porsche Cayman GTS. Sharper than the Cayman S, is it Porsche's best sports car? Video and review here

Evo rating
Price
from £55,397
  • Sublime chassis, wonderful noise
  • Not sure about the styling changes

What is it?

The new Porsche Cayman GTS. On the surface Porsche’s GTS formula isn’t particularly revolutionary, it just seems to play the ‘ideal spec’ game very well, cherry-picking all the best bits from the options list. Yes the Cayman GTS gets power and torque increases to lift it above the Cayman S, but they’re hardly earth-shattering numbers, adding just 14bhp and 7lb ft to the totals, giving 335bhp and 280lb ft. However, the end GTS result is somehow more than the sum of its parts. Prices start at £55,397.

Technical highlights?

Distinguishing the new car from the rest of its brethren is fairly easy. At the front there’s a new black spoiler running across its chin to match the restyled black air intakes above. At the rear there is a revised lower apron and a black GTS badge on the boot. Meanwhile, the bi-xenon headlights have a black finish and the rear lights are smoked.

There is one more very important (no-cost) option fitted to our test car that significantly changes the stance of the GTS: sports suspension. The GTS gets PASM adaptive dampers as standard, but the non-adaptive sports set-up lowers the car by a full 20mm and, combined with the 35-profile tyres and 20in wheels that come as standard, it looks extremely hunkered down. The Sport Chrono package with dynamic transmission mounts also comes as standard on the GTS, but you still have to pay extra (£4977) for the carbon-ceramic brakes that are fitted to our test car.

The GTS is a tenth of a second quicker to 62mph than the Cayman S, taking 4.9sec with the six-speed manual gearbox and 4.8sec with the optional PDK transmission. However, I’m pleased that our car has been left with the manual ’box, because it is a sublimely slick joy to use. If you pop it into Sport Plus mode (part of the Sport Chrono package) then it will rev-match every downchange perfectly for you.

What’s it like to drive?

Even pottering slowly in town you can feel the effects of the Sport Suspension through the steering, as there’s just a bit more weight in your palms and the reactions immediately either side of the straight-ahead are more direct. It’s away from town, though, where the chassis really comes into its own.

Turn in and the GTS immediately leans onto its firmer springs and starts working the tyres (Goodyear Eagle F1 Asymmetric 2s), allowing you to feel the grip and then play with it. There’s a lovely sense of the car’s grasp on the road ebbing and flowing, giving you a wide band of adjustment before the rubber threatens to give up its grip entirely. It fills you with the confidence to carry speed into a corner, feel the front push a little and then get on the throttle to switch the balance rearwards, smearing the rear tyres round in a way that’s not lairy, just very satisfying.

One road that we find is exceptionally bumpy and tight, but the GTS seems happy to tackle it at speed and never loses its composure. Then through a particular set of smoother corners the Cayman deals with quick left-right direction changes sublimely, never leaving you guessing as you load the suspension one way then the other. It will even allow you to brake deep into the corners and get the rear moving round so that you can pick up the throttle smartly as you hit the apex.

How does it compare?

The Cayman S is already a pretty sublime car, and while the GTS is an additional £6500, it’s appreciably sharper, and this is a sum easily spent on options anyway. Its most exciting rivals are the new BMW M4 coupe (423bhp, £56,635) and the Jaguar F-type V6 S Coupe (375bhp, £60,250), both of which are front-engine/rear-drive and therefore more practical than the Cayman, though bigger and heavier.

Anything else I need to know?

The only small complaint is that the gearing remains a touch tall. Shorten the ratios and not only would you reach those spine-tingling upper reaches of the rev range more easily, but you could enjoy slicing up and down the gearbox more frequently too. Perhaps a short-ratio ’box could be an option?

Also, if you crave the wind ruffling around your ears, there’s a Boxster GTS available for £52,879.

Specifications

EngineFlat-six, 3436cc
Max power335bhp @ 7400rpm
Max torque280lb ft @ 4750-5800rpm
0-604.9sec (claimed)
Top speed177mph (claimed)

Most Popular

New 992 Porsche 911 GT3 Touring revealed – now available in manual and PDK
Porsche 911 GT3 Touring – rear profile
Porsche 911 GT3

New 992 Porsche 911 GT3 Touring revealed – now available in manual and PDK

The Touring pack has returned, combining the 992 GT3’s set-up with more understated looks
15 Jun 2021
Triumph Lynx – Dead on arrival
Triumph Lynx
Features

Triumph Lynx – Dead on arrival

With a 3.5-litre Rover V8 under the bonnet and TR7 fastback styling, the Lynx could have been British Leyland’s answer to the Ford Capri
18 Jun 2021
The reluctant LaFerrari driver – evo archive
evo archive – LaFerrari truck extraction – stop!
Ferrari

The reluctant LaFerrari driver – evo archive

How do you get a £1million hypercar out of the back of a delivery truck? Very, very, slowly…
15 Jun 2021
MAT Stratos 2021 review – Lancia’s iconic Stratos reborn
MAT Stratos – front tracking
Lancia

MAT Stratos 2021 review – Lancia’s iconic Stratos reborn

It’s been a long time coming, but this Ferrari F430-based reimagining of the Lancia Stratos is finally here
11 Jun 2021
Used car deals of the week
Used car deals
used cars

Used car deals of the week

Here's what caught evo’s fancy this week on the second hand car market
17 Jun 2021
Next generation BMW 7-series spied – flagship saloon to once again set the tone for future models
Next generation BMW 7-series spied – front quarter
BMW 7 Series

Next generation BMW 7-series spied – flagship saloon to once again set the tone for future models

All-new saloon to feature IC and EV powertrains, but once again it’ll also lead the way aesthetically
16 Jun 2021
Hyundai i20 N revealed – Ford Fiesta ST rival priced from £24,995
Hyundai i20 N car pictures
Hyundai i20 hatchback

Hyundai i20 N revealed – Ford Fiesta ST rival priced from £24,995

N division's second model set to shake up the junior hot hatch establishment
17 Jun 2021
BMW M5 CS 2021 review – a class act that reaffirms the M division’s brilliance
BMW M5 CS – front cornering
BMW M5 saloon

BMW M5 CS 2021 review – a class act that reaffirms the M division’s brilliance

Nonsensical on paper, but sublime in practice. Never has a modern supersaloon been more tactile or more engaging
14 Jun 2021
Ford Mustang Steve McQueen Bullitt Edition 2021 review – a 720bhp tribute act
Ford Mustang Steve McQueen Bullitt Edition – slide
Ford Mustang

Ford Mustang Steve McQueen Bullitt Edition 2021 review – a 720bhp tribute act

Immense performance from about the coolest modern muscle car out there. It’s expensive, but there’s nothing else quite like it
12 Jun 2021
2021 Audi RS3 Sportback and saloon previewed – will it finally match Mercedes-AMG A45 S?
Audi RS3 manufacturer spy 1
Audi RS3

2021 Audi RS3 Sportback and saloon previewed – will it finally match Mercedes-AMG A45 S?

Audi Sport is putting the final touches on its new RS3 hot hatch and saloon
10 Jun 2021
Ferrari F8 Tributo replacement to be revealed June 24
Ferrari F171 spy 2021 – header
Ferrari

Ferrari F8 Tributo replacement to be revealed June 24

Ferrari’s going hybrid and V6 for its next mid-engined supercar
16 Jun 2021
Updated in-line six Mercedes-AMG GT 4-Door revealed – hybrid V8s still to come
Mercedes-AMG GT53 MY22 – front tracking
Mercedes

Updated in-line six Mercedes-AMG GT 4-Door revealed – hybrid V8s still to come

GT43 and GT53 4-Doors receive a refresh while we await the arrival of the V8 hybrid GT73
14 Jun 2021
2022 Polestar 3 teased – all-new Audi e-tron rival a stepchange model
Polestar 3
Polestar

2022 Polestar 3 teased – all-new Audi e-tron rival a stepchange model

Yes, it’s another electric SUV, but this one will be the first ‘true’ Polestar
17 Jun 2021
Tesla Model S Plaid deliveries begin – 1006bhp super saloon now reaching customers
Tesla Model S Plaid
Tesla Model S

Tesla Model S Plaid deliveries begin – 1006bhp super saloon now reaching customers

The long-awaited Tesla Model S Plaid has finally come to fruition, with first US examples hitting the road
11 Jun 2021