Jaco Van Der Merwe
The GTS moniker, an acronym for Grand Turismo Sport, forms a rich part of Porsche’s history.
It started in 1963 when Zuffenhausen founder Ferdinand Porsche designed the 904 Carrera GTS. The purpose of his creation was a car fit for both the road and the track in the line with the mantra of “every Porsche is suited to racing”.
Today the badge features in most Porsche model ranges. First introduced to the 911 in 2009, the GTS nomenclature recently joined the latest reincarnation of this iconic model. These include the Carrera GTS, the Carrera 4 GTS, the Carrera GTS Cabriolet, the Carrera 4 GTS Cabriolet and Targa 4 GTS.
The 911 GTS models slot in between the Carrera S and Turbo S offerings and are differentiated by sport styling and an unashamed soundtrack.
The entire 911 GTS line-up is powered by a turbocharged, 3.0-litre flat-six engine which produces 353 kW of power, which is a power bump of 22 kW over its predecessor and the Carrera S. Torque is also increased by 20 Nm to 570 Nm.
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The power is sent to the rear wheels in the Carrera GTS coupe and cabriolet and to all four wheels in the case if the Carrera 4 GTS coupe and cabriolet and Targa 4 GTS.
All models are equipped with Porsche’s eight-speed dual clutch (PDK) transmission, with a seven-speed manual transmission offered at no additional. The manual gearlever has been shortened by 10 mm for easier grip.
Zuffenhausen claims the 911 GTS can reach 100 km/h from a standstill in 3.3 sec, which is 0.3 sec faster than its predecessor.
A highlight of the GTS is the soundtrack of the standard sports exhaust system. Together with less noise insulation, it sounds every bit as good as it looks.
The 911 GTS benefits from a modified version of the 911 Turbo sports chassis. Porsche Suspension Management comes standard which enables shock absorbers to swiftly respond to dynamic changes. Active roll stabilisation also provides improved cornering stability.
A lightweight package which saves 25 kg is optional on coupe models and features lightweight sports bucket seats, rear-axle steering and even less noise insulation in the cabin.
The interior features black Race-Tex microfibre finishes on the seat centres, steering wheel rim, doorhandles and armrests, storage compartment lid and gear lever.
As part of the GTS interior package, decorative stitching is available in either Carmine Red or Crayon, with the seatbelts, the embroidered GTS lettering on the headrests, and the dials of the rev counter in the respective contrasting colour.
All 911 GTS models come standard with a GT sports steering wheel which houses the Sport Chrono mode switch, tyre temperature display and Porsche Track Precision App.
The latest version on the Porsche Communication Management system allows smartphone connectivity and over-the-sir software updates.
On the exterior GTS models are differentiated from their 911 siblings through the Sport Design package. Characteristics in the front include a front spoiler lip painted in black and front apron partially painted in black, tinted LED headlights featuring Porsche Dynamic Light System Plus and mirror lower trim in exterior colour.
At the back it features a lid grille with longitude slats in black, rear apron with inlays in black, “PORSCHE” lettering and model designation in black and sports exhaust system which includes tailpipes in black.
GTS models ride on 21-inch wheels at the back and 20-inch wheels in the front taken from the 911 Turbo S which are painted in black and features central locking.
GTS models also feature the Turbo’s grey cast iron high-performance braking system which utilises six-piston 408 mm callipers in the front and four-piston 380 mm callipers in the rear.
On the safety front, a highlight is the Warn and Brake Assist, which reduces the risk of collisions with cars, pedestrians and cyclists.
We got to sample the Carrera GTS and Carrera 4 GTS coupe during a launch drive on pristine country roads around Cape Town last week and needless to say, we were very impressed.
While not as beastly as the Turbo and Turbo S models, the GTS offers a very attractive alternative. It hustles when it needs to, handles like you would expect from a top Porsche product and sounds the part too.
The GTS strikes the perfect balance between everyday usability and extreme performance, just like Ferdinand Porsche had intended over six decades ago.
911 Carrera GTS – R2 290 000
911 Carrera 4 GTS – R2 400 000
911 Carrera GTS Cabriolet – R2 490 000
911 Carrera 4 GTS Cabriolet – R2 600 000
911 Targa 4 GTS – R2 600 000
All models come standard with three year/100 000 km Driveplan.
For more information on the Porsche 911 GTS, click here.