Porsche has chosen the 2010 Los Angeles Auto Show to unveil its finest version yet of the Cayman sports coupe. The new Cayman R is a stripped-out, lighter and more powerful variant of the mid-engined 'S' model. Porsche says that in its special alphabet, the letter 'R' is for "responsive and refined – but most especially for racy."
Stuttgart's team of engineers started off by eliminating any unnecessary items for purists such as the air conditioning, audio system and complex door handles -owners will have to do with simple door pulls on this German baby. Porsche says more savings were achieved through the use of lightweight components including the carbon fiber bucket seats and the lightest 19 inch wheels offered by the company weighing in at less than 40kg / 80 lbs.
Furthermore, the Cayman R gets a smaller fuel tank. As for the 911 GT3/GT3 RS and Boxster Spyder, an optional lithium-ion lightweight construction battery is also available. All said, Porsche's engineers managed to shave off 55 kg (121 lbs) over the Cayman S bringing down the total weight to just 1,295 kg (2855 lb).
Next on the list was a fine tuning of the Cayman S' 3.4-litre six-cylinder engine, which produced an additional 10HP lifting output to 330-horsepower with the torque figure remaining unchanged at 272lb ft.
In standard configuration, power is transfered to the rear wheels through a through a six-speed manual gearbox that propels the car from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 5.0 seconds. With the optional seven-speed Porsche Doppelkupplungsgetriebe (PDK), the sprint time is reduced to 4.9 seconds. But wait, that's not all. Porsche also offers the optional Sport Chrono package, which takes it to 100 km/h (62 mph) in just 4.7 seconds.
The new mid-engine coupé is capable of reaching a top speed of 282 km/h (175 mph) with manual gearbox, and 280 km/h (174 mph) with the PDK. The company says it consumes 9.7 l/100 km (29.12 mpg imp.) with six-speed gearbox and 9.3 l/100 km (30.37 mpg imp.) with PDK on average.
The chassis set-up for the Cayman R includes a sports suspension that lowers the car's ride height by 20mm (0.79 in.) compared to the 'S' and a limited slip differential. Buyers can also opt for a set of ceramic brakes.
On the visual side, the Cayman R comes with an aero kit that includes a distinctive rear wing and a front lip spoiler, black-framed headlights plus special graphics on the side and mirrors in contrasting black or silver, depending on the body colour.
The new Porsche Cayman R will arrive in dealerships in February 2011 with prices in Germany set at €69,830 [US$95,050] inclusive of 19 percent VAT and country-specific equipment items, and in the U.S.A., at $66,300 [€48,700 at today's exchange rates].