Unveiled at the 2016 Geneva International Motor Show, the new Porsche 911 R is a pure-bred sports car built to conform to a time-honoured formula; a powerful 500 hp (368 kW) four-litre naturally-aspirated flat-six engine driving the rear wheels, a six-speed manual transmission, and a lightweight body. It is also limited to just 991 examples worldwide.
These characteristics place the 911 R firmly in the tradition of its historic namesake: a road-homologated racing car from 1967. Produced as part of a limited production series, the original 911 R was campaigned in iconic road races of the period, such as the Tour de France and Targa Florio, and also in world record runs.
Like its legendary predecessor, the new 911 R offers an unfiltered driving experience, delivered via systematic lightweight construction and a devotion to maximum performance this special model has an overall weight of 1,370 kilograms and is thus the lightest version of the 911. With a high-revving six-cylinder naturally aspirated engine and manual sports transmission, Porsche is once again underlining its commitment to especially emotional high-performance sports cars. Developed in the Motorsport workshop, the 911 R extends the spectrum of high-performance naturally-aspirated engines alongside the motor sport-inspired, track-bred models 911 GT3 and 911 GT3 RS.
In the rear of the 911 R lies the charismatic flat-six ‘boxer’ engine with a displacement of four-litres, familiar from the 911 GT3 RS. The race-bred engine delivers 500 hp at 8,250 rpm and generates 460 Nm at 6,250 rpm.
From a standing start, 0-60 mph is possible in 3.7 seconds. In keeping with the pure character of the 911 R, it is available exclusively with a six-speed manual sports transmission. The short gearshift travel emphasises the interactive driving experience. The forward thrust of the 911 R continues to a potential top speed of 201 mph (323 km/h), and Combined NEDC fuel consumption is 21.2 mpg (13.3 l/100 km).
A thoroughbred driving machine: technology from the race track
The 911 R could almost have been made for twisting roads. Fitted as standard with specially-tuned rear-axle steering, direct turn-in and precise handling is guaranteed while maintaining high stability. In addition, the mechanical rear limited slip differential ensures maximum traction.
Ensuring the greatest possible deceleration are Porsche Ceramic Composite Brakes (PCCB), also fitted as standard. The discs measure a generous 410 mm diameter on the front axle and 390 mm on the rear. Ultra High Performance Tyres of 245 mm width at the front and 305 mm width at the rear provide assured contact to the road. These are mounted on lightweight, forged aluminium wheels with centre-locking and matt-finish.
Motorsport development has adapted the control systems of the Porsche Stability Management (PSM) for the 911 R, tailoring the car for a focused and authentic driving experience. An optional single-mass flywheel for the engine is one example of this, resulting in a significant improvement in spontaneity and high-rev responsiveness of the engine. A double-declutch function – activated by pressing a button – for perfect gearshifts when changing down is also part of the repertoire of the 911 R.
For broad everyday versatility, a lift system can also be ordered: it raises ground clearance of the front axle by approximately 30 mm at the touch of a button.
With an overall weight of 1,370 kg, the 911 R undercuts the 911 GT3 RS by 50 kg. The bonnet and front wheel-arches are made of carbonfibre and the roof is magnesium, which reduces the centre of gravity. Rear windscreen and rear side windows are lightweight plastic. Additional weight-saving factors are the reduced sound insulation in the interior and the omission of a rear bench seat.