A drag reduction system is fitted in a production Porsche for the first time. To achieve low drag and higher speeds on straight sections of the track, the DRS allows the wings to be flattened out at the push of a button, within a specific operating range
The new Porsche 911 GT3 RS was built for one thing: Uncompromisingly designed for maximum performance. The 386 kW (524hp) road-legal high-performance sports car takes full advantage of technology and concepts from its motorsports heritage. Even beyond the high-revving naturally aspirated engine with racing DNA and intelligent lightweight construction, it inherits — above all — its cooling and aerodynamic systems from its motorsport brother, the 911 GT3 R.
The basis for a significant performance boost is the concept of a central radiator — an idea that was first used in the Le Mans class-winning 911 RSR and subsequently in the 911 GT3 R. Instead of the three-radiator layout seen in previous cars, the new 911 GT3 RS relies on a large, angled center radiator in the car’s nose, positioned where the luggage compartment is located on other 911 models.
This has made it possible to use the space freed up on the sides to integrate active aerodynamic elements. Continuously adjustable wing elements in the front and on the two-part rear wing, in combination with a number of other aerodynamic measures, provide 409 kg of total downforce at 200 km/h. This means that the new 911 GT3 RS generates twice as much downforce as its 991.2-generation predecessor and three times as much as a current 911 GT3. At 285 km/h, the total downforce is 860 kg.
Moreover, a drag reduction system (DRS) is fitted in a production Porsche for the first time. To achieve low drag and higher speeds on straight sections of the track, the DRS allows the wings to be flattened out at the push of a button, within a specific operating range. The airbrake function is activated during emergency braking at high speeds: The wing elements at the front and rear are set to maximum, creating an aerodynamic deceleration effect that significantly supports the wheel brakes.
Exterior-wise, it is characterized by a large number of functional aerodynamic elements. The most prominent feature of the GT sports car is the swan-neck-supported rear wing, which is significantly larger in all dimensions. The rear wing consists of a fixed main wing and an upper, hydraulically adjustable wing element. For the first time on a Porsche production vehicle, the upper edge of the rear wing is higher than the car’s roof. In addition, the front end of the 911 GT3 RS no longer has a front spoiler, but instead features a front splitter that divides the air flowing over and underneath. Side blades accurately direct air outwards. Front-wheel arch ventilation is provided via louvered openings in the front wings. Inlets behind the front wheels, in the style of the iconic Le Mans-winning 911 GT1, reduce the dynamic pressure in the wheel arches. Side blades behind the intake ensure that the air is directed to the side of the vehicle. Air from the centrally positioned radiator flows out via large nostrils on the front lid. Fins on the roof direct the air outwards, ensuring cooler intake temperatures in the rear.
In the new 911 GT3 RS, the openings in the rear side panel are used exclusively to improve aerodynamics and not to draw in process air. The rear wheel arch also features an intake and a side blade for optimized airflow. The rear diffuser comes from the 911 GT3 and has been slightly adapted.
Even the suspension comes in for aerodynamic attention. Because the wheel arches of the new 911 GT3 RS are subject to powerful airflows, the components of the double-wishbone front axle are designed with teardrop-shaped profiles. These aerodynamically efficient links increase downforce on the front axle by around 40 kg at top speed and are otherwise only used in high-end motorsport applications. Because of the wider track (29 millimeters wider than the 911 GT3), the double-wishbone front axle links are also correspondingly longer.
To ensure that the downforce balance between the front and rear axles is maintained even when braking from high speeds, the suspension engineers have significantly reduced pitching under braking. On the new 911 GT3 RS, the front ball joint of the lower trailing arm has been set lower on the front axle. The multi-link rear axle has also been adjusted, with modified spring rates. The driver assistance systems and rear-axle steering also have an even more dynamic setup here.
The 911 GT3 RS offers three driving modes: Normal, Sport and Track. In Track mode, the basic settings can be individually adjusted. Among other settings, the rebound and compression damping of the front and rear axles can be adjusted separately and in several stages. The rear differential can also be adjusted via rotary controls on the steering wheel. This is done quickly and intuitively with an operating and display concept also borrowed from motorsport: Four individual rotary controls and a button for the DRS are located on the steering wheel. These rotary controls are clearly displayed via graphics in the instrument cluster during the adjustment process. It also features the track screen already familiar with the 911 GT3. At the touch of a button, the driver can reduce the digital displays on the two seven-inch side displays to essential information only. The gearshift indicators to the left and right of the analogue tachometer have also been taken from the GT3.
Inside, this new GT sports car is finished in typical RS style: Black leather, Racetex and carbon-weave finish characterize the purist, sporting ambience. The 911 GT3 RS is available with the Clubsport package at no extra cost. This includes a steel rollover bar, a hand-held fire extinguisher and six-point seat belts for the driver. The Weissach package, which is available at extra cost, involves considerably more. The front lid, roof, parts of the rear wing and the upper shell of the exterior mirrors feature a carbon-weave finish. The front and rear anti-roll bars, the rear coupling rods and the shear panel on the rear axle are made of CFRP and contribute to a further enhancement of the driving dynamics. The rollover bar, constructed for the first time from CFRP, saves around six kilograms compared with the steel version. Another highlight of the Weissach package is the PDK shift paddles with motorsport-derived magnet technology. This makes gear changes even more dynamic thanks to a more precise pressure point and a clearly perceptible click.
High-revving four-liter six-cylinder boxer engine
Under its hood is a 4.0-liter high-revving naturally aspirated engine, further optimized compared to its brother, 911 GT3. The increased power of 386 kW (524hp) is achieved primarily via new camshafts with modified cam profiles. The seven-speed Porsche Doppelkupplung has a shorter overall gear ratio than the 911 GT3. Air intakes on the underbody ensure that the transmission can withstand even extreme rigors on the track. The 911 GT3 RS accelerates from zero to 100 km/h in 3.2 seconds and reaches a top speed of 296 km/h in the seventh gear.
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