Well-built, fast and stunning to look at, the new Porsche Cayman S is a worthy second generation car, writes Shapur Kotwal
Porsche’s Cayman, since its launch in 2006, earned a reputation as one of the world’s best handling sportscars. That’s quite a title to protect and when Porsche launched the second-generation car, most assumed improving on this already impressive beauty would be rather difficult.
One area where the improvement is most evident is the looks. While the previous Cayman had a slight awkward appearance, this new model is positively stunning to behold. The design seems inspired by Porsche racing cars from the 1960s and the symmetry between the nose, roof and tail are perfect. It has a feline, hunched stance with ‘broad shoulders’. And complementing these elements are the fenders and cutouts in the chin. It comes with large 20-inch wheels.
On the inside, the cabin is typically Porsche and bears great resemblance to the Boxster. The build quality and finish is on par with the best modern luxury cars. The carmaker shares a lot of parts among its sportscars and you’ll recognise bits from the 911. However, it loses out a little on practicality and there’s a dearth of useful storage spaces. Technology is updated though and the touchscreen works well with phones pairing easily. This car is also roomier than the old one as the wheelbase is longer and it’s wider as well.
The other aspect where this new car exhibits remarkable competence is the ride. For ultra-low 35-profile tyres, ride is surprisingly good. Of course, surface undulations do unsettle the Porsche, but not as badly as you would expect of a sportscar. On Indian roads, one must be careful and speedbreakers have to be approached diagonally.
The best part of the car — the engine. Porsche has made its new-generation engines high-revving and hence the 321bhp here feels nearly 50 horses more powerful. Maximum power comes in at 7400rpm and the auto ’box shifts up a gear just before 8,000rpm. And what makes this experience unbeatable is the throaty roar of the motor.
The Cayman S is also seriously quick, 100kph coming up from standstill in just 5.3 seconds. And then there’s the handling — among the best in the world. Corners are tackled effortlessly and are a brilliant experience for the driver. The balance is near perfect, so precise that it inspires the driver to push harder and harder. There is one grouse that the steering doesn’t provide as much feel as the one in the older car. But when considering the rest of the car this is something that can be easily overlooked.
The new Porsche Cayman S is indeed a worthy successor to its predecessor. Good news for those looking to buy the car in India is that the carmaker now has its own service network here. At Rs. 93.5 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi), it is expensive. But for an unparalleled sportscar experience, we’re sure that’s a price enthusiasts would gladly pay.