Next to the 992 Porsche 911 GT3 streetcar, the next-generation Cup car has kept fans on the edge of their seats. As the top-selling racing car in the world, the German automaker certainly had big shoes to fill, but wow did they deliver.
A first for the motorsport division, the one-make racing machine will not only be released to competitors in the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup, but also to customer teams in the national Carrera Cups – held in Germany, France, Asia, Benelux, and North America. As a springboard series that’s consistently proven its success over the years, it’s incredibly exciting to see such a substantial update.
There are obviously many improvements to the car, but one leap comes in the power department. It still uses the same 4.0-liter six-cylinder horizontally opposed engine as its predecessor, but this unit has been pumped up to produce 510 horsepower (375 kilowatts) over the previous 485 hp (361.664 kW) benchmark. More grunt is fantastic, but one of the new challenger’s party pieces is that it can produce those numbers using synthetic fuels, significantly lowering CO2 emissions – purists will be relieved to hear that it keeps the same exhaust configuration, producing one of the great noises in motorsport.
Along with more power, there are also big improvements in aerodynamics and mechanical grip. As a first for the GT3 cup, it sits on the wider body of the 911 Turbo. With the rear measuring out to 1,902 millimeters in width, it exceeds the width of the previous model by 28 mm; the same can be said at the front-axle which stands at 1,920 mm. The new setup allows for 12-inch wide rims at the front and 13-inch at the back – a very typical configuration for GT racing which ensures optimal handling and drivability.
Another noticeable upgrade comes with the interior which looks to be very heavily inspired by the 911 GT3 R – the bigger brother of the cup car. Along with completely revised ergonomics, the new cockpit comes with a large color display, illuminated controls, and a new steering wheel made of carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic. It’s clear that the design team wanted the budding race car drivers of tomorrow to feel special when they hop in.
Along with the pursuit for more performance, the German automaker was committed to making the new car more cost-effective for teams to run. As a development series, the economic side is paramount, giving smaller teams just as much of a chance at success as the big teams.
“We were particularly successful in achieving this thanks to its striking appearance, the improved suspension, and intelligent solutions for electrical details,” said project manager Jan Feldmann. “With its improved performance and the optimized cockpit, it’s the best Cup car that Porsche has ever built.”
As the new car will be used in the 2021 series of Cup racing worldwide, delivery to teams will begin in February of next year. Following its release, the racing car of tomorrow is now ready to race for €225,000 ($272,511).