Tag Archive | "Cayman"

Is the Porsche Cayman Better Than the 911?

Routinely, The Porsche 911 will always have more power than the Cayman and Porsche won’t have it any other way because, in their world, the Cayman is an entry level car and it can’t be allowed to top its fire-breathing bigger brother and that’s that. Or is it?

The problem is, as anyone who has driven the 2014 Cayman S along a twisting country road will tell you, the story isn’t that simple. What it lacks in power it makes up with really truly fantastic mid-engine road holding and on UK roads that can make a difference when the jaw-dropping, shrieking performance of a 911 simply can’t be exercised.

CAY4 Is the Porsche Cayman Better Than the 911?The Porsche 911 is a prestige car with a price tag to match. It can be a bit of a status symbol. Certainly, there is a core group of enthusiasts who drive the 911 the way it was meant to be driven. But a high percentage of 911s will see more duty trundling in traffic than hurtling about on a track.

In some ways the 2014 Porsche Cayman sounds better than the 911. The Cayman’s mid-engine platform puts that wailing, high-revving 3.4L flat-6 directly behind your head, whereas the 911’s engine is right at the back, muffled by extra bodywork and the very small rear seats. Believe the hype; the sound of a Porsche is mesmerizing. And it’s that much better when the engine is literally inches from your ears. You can even specify the optional sport exhaust if you want an even more ear-assaulting soundtrack.

Porsche placed the Cayman’s engine in the correct location. With a 46/54 front/rear weight distribution, the Cayman is, at least in theory, a superior sports car platform. Not that there aren’t benefits to the 911’s rear-biased 39/61 setup. Astonishing straight-line traction, for one thing, which can be augmented by selecting the four-wheel drive option.

Early Porsche 911s were known for scary lift-throttle over-steer. It wasn’t uncommon for enthusiastic owners to find themselves travelling very quickly backward into a ditch. Over the years though Porsche have engineered away most of the 911’s evil tendencies, while still retaining its other abilities, which helps it turn in with a powerfully effective bit of rear rotation.

With the six-speed manual, the base Porsche Cayman is 69 kilos lighter than the base 911 with its seven-speed manual transmission. There aren’t gigantic differences, but as legendary Lotus boss, the late Colin Chapman, once said, “First add lightness”. That’s as true now as it has ever been. You can feel the difference and it also means you’ll spend less money on wear item like tyres, brake pads and clutches.

CAY3 Is the Porsche Cayman Better Than the 911?Both cars have their pros and cons, it’s just that, arguably, there are more cons with the 911. As we’ve seen, Porsche have no intention of letting the Cayman eclipse the 911 but, on the other hand, the Cayman is way cheaper to buy. That’s probably, on UK roads at least, the reason that the Cayman is the winner on points.

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Porsche Appreciation

One of the joys of buying a new car is when the time comes to pick up your prize purchase. A good dealer will make you feel just a bit special when the time comes to hand over the keys and this agreeable experience doesn’t often get much better than at a Porsche Centre.

In a recent survey with comments from nearly forty thousand respondents, Porsche was rated number one for their peerless customer service.  Anyone who has bought either a new or used Porsche will know this to be true. Your car is not just there, it is presented. The sales person remains attentive and describes your car in great and careful detail which is great, but slightly frustrating as all you really want to do is get in and drive! Nevertheless, those surveyed rated the Porsche dealer network to be the best in the UK.

There is no doubt that the German company make special cars. In the survey the mid-engined Cayman was voted a best buy. This comes as no surprise. Although it has to be said that Porsche’s are expensive to buy there can be no question that the Cayman is value for money. If ever a car could be described as scintillating, it is this one. Owners will talk of its legendary handling and poise at almost any speed. Couple that with great looks and a bomb-proof build quality and the discerning buyer can’t really go wrong. The old saying that ‘ people only buy a Cayman because they can’t afford a Carrera’ is arrogant nonsense.

The survey goes on to rather pointlessly suggest that anyone intending to buy a sports car should ‘choose one with good reliability’. You don’t say. Meanwhile, in the good old US of A, the mighty J.D.Power organisation rated Porsche to be the most popular brand.

In the used car market the Cayman’s sibling, the convertible Boxster, was judged to be the tops for driving enjoyment and warranted an almost perfect score from satisfied owners. The satisfaction quotient for the Porsche Centres wasn’t much less, coming in at 85%. Not entirely perfect then, but still streets ahead of most of the competition.

Given all the above, it will come as no surprise to find out that in the American survey customers voted the 911 to be the best of the premium sports cars. Similarly, the Cayenne – the new shape being a great improvement on the original vehicle – was also lauded in its sector.

Despite their prestige image and indeed their prestige prices it is good to know that one day a Porsche may come within reach and when that day comes it is going to be special.

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