Does the Porsche Cayman GT4 RS Finally Solve the Infamous Cayman Complex?

Brands like Porsche need hierarchy in their lineup to help differentiate between their cars. That’s why the Porsche 911 sits at the top of the Porsche family tree. The little sports car is why the company exists. However, Porsche also makes the 718 series of cars, the Boxster and Spyder. What happens when you give these baby Stuttgart cars the 911 GT3 treatment? The Porsche Cayman GT4 RS, of course.

However, the GT4 RS has a little bit of a problem. Porsche enthusiasts refer to this as the “Cayman complex”, and it’s time to find out if the fastest Cayman suffers from it.

Andreas Preuninger and the Porsche GT4 RS at the Nordschleife
Porsche GT head boss Andreas Preuninger and the GT4 RS | Porsche

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Before we get to the Cayman Complex, we’d be remiss for not acknowledging just how fast the GT4 RS is. It was just yesterday that a sub-8 minute lap around the Nurburgring was considered to be outrageously fast. Times like that were reserved for only the most hardcore track-spec supercars on semi-slick tires like Porsche’s own 911 GT3 RS.

Now, the 911’s baby sibling is setting neck-breaking times on the ‘Ring. Stuttgart must be proud. Not only is such a blistering time a first for the 718 series of cars (which includes the Boxster and the Cayman), but this is also the first 718 car to bear the “RS” badge. It’s big shoes to fill, being counted among the ranks of the 911 GT3 RS.

It’s hard to tell if the GT4 RS solves the Cayman Complex

A black Porsche Cayman GT4 RS at the Nurburgring, shot from the front 3/4
The GT4 RS at the Nurburgring | Porsche

However, it has traditionally been that comparison to the 911 that hurts the Cayman. Whether or not that’ll be true for the Porsche Cayman GT4 RS is hard to tell. The Cayman Complex is to blame. Basically, the Porsche Cayman, though smaller, lighter, and now just as fast as a 911, cannot be as fast as a 911. It’s simply too cheap.

So, Porsche has traditionally fiddled with the gearing ratios on the Cayman to keep its acceleration figures from eclipsing those of the 911. After all, who’s going to buy a 911 when the Cayman is faster for less money? Porsche hasn’t released gear ratios for the new Porsche Cayman GT4 RS, but if the Nurburgring time is to be believed, this new car might be faster than a base 911 Carrera.

The Porsche Cayman GT4 RS is no “poor man’s Porsche”

A black 2022 Porsche Cayman GT4 RS shot from the 3/4 angle on a mountain pass
The Cayman GT4 RS | Porsche

Unfortunately, we don’t have any real specifications yet, as the car hasn’t officially debuted. However, we expect the new GT4 RS to be no “poor man’s Porsche,” nor will it be a poor man’s GT RS car. In all likelihood, it’ll take the current GT4’s 414 hp and bump that up, in addition to some already confirmed lightweighting. That means price will rise accordingly, putting it around $125,000. That’s 911 money to be sure, but will it be 911 fast? We’ll have to wait and see.

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