Auto123 updatestest drive the 2022 Porsche 718 Cayman T.
Have you ever dreamed of the perfect sports car? It’s true that right now, there are much more pressing concerns in the world: the war in Ukraine, global warming and this damn pandemic which seems to want to slow down fortunately; in short, there is no shortage of humanitarian causes. But hey, for the thrill-seeker behind the wheel, this question is completely legitimate.
Owning a sports car is a privilege that can be experienced in many ways, but what matters – just like any other type of vehicle – is that the owner is happy behind his or her flying. This is also the primary mission of this 2022 Porsche 718 Cayman T, a new livery available within the brand’s more “affordable” sports range. The “T” stands for Touring here and according to Porsche, this version is synonymous with driving pleasure in its purest form.
Let me add that the Porsche 718 Cayman – as well as its soft-top cousin, the 718 Boxster – is already associated with that driving pleasure so sought after by hardcore driving enthusiasts and it grows a little more every time we climb into the 718 range. But driving enthusiasts don’t necessarily need a track toy like the Cayman GT4 RS for their daily routine. A basic Porsche Cayman, in S or even GTS livery, can do just fine. So what about this T livery which is inspired by the 911 T unveiled in 1968?
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In the spirit of the 911 T
Like the other vehicles tattooed with the T crest, the 718 Cayman T pays homage to the 911 T marketed in the late 1960s and early 1970s, the raison d’être of this variant which was to lowering the entry price of the 911 at the time, without sacrificing the performance of the new 6-cylinder flat engine.
This time, there is no doubt that the Cayman T enhances the capabilities of the car (compared to the basic model), but under this body and in the central position, it is not a “flat-six” that takes place here, but a “flat-four” to move the most affordable sports car in the Porsche range.
In fact, it’s the same turbocharged engine as the most accessible version. We are therefore talking about a power of 300 horsepower and an optimal torque of 280 lb-ft., figures that are almost disappointing in the overpowered world of the automobile in 2022. In this case, the gearbox installed in front the turbocharged flat-4 is the seven-speed PDK unit, instead of the standard six-speed manual transmission.
Note, however, the presence of 20-inch rims (instead of the 18-inch rims on the basic Cayman), also that of the PASM (Porsche Active Suspension Management) system which, as its name suggests, adjusts the rebound of the suspension at each wheel depending on road conditions and driver’s driving style. PASM also lowers the height of the body by 20 mm.
The PTV (Porsche Torque Vectoring) system from the Stuttgart brand is also part of the equipment list of the Cayman T, as is the limited-slip differential on the second axle. Finally, the “T” treatment continues inside with headrests embroidered with the “718”, fabric handles in the doors, not to mention the electrically adjustable sports seats, which are covered in this Sport- Texas in the center.
An affordable Porsche?
It’s true that the average price of a new car has risen sharply lately, but even at a base price of $75,300, a Porsche Cayman is not really the definition of an affordable sports car, although when faced with a 911, we are talking about a bargain! The Cayman T, meanwhile, commands a starting price of $77,900. The car loaned for this test, however, had a few options to make driving a bit more comfortable.
The 718 T interior package adds a sum of $3,160 which adds a panoply of stitching in the cabin, Porsche which offers four colors including Yellow Course. Adding the PDK box, meanwhile, bumps up the bill by $4,250, keyless access ($770) and Bose sound system ($1,130)…and that’s it!
Finally, the bill goes up to $87,210 before taxes and fees, which isn’t so bad after all.
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But, this mathematical calculation loses all its meaning once seated behind this sports steering wheel which is quite difficult to beat in terms of handling. The mission of any Porsche vehicle – yes, even the base Macan adheres to this school of thought – is to deliver high performance and even put a smile on its driver’s face, whether in heavy traffic or on a beautiful road along the sea.
On board the Cayman T, we quickly find our bearings, the most affordable sports car in the range which, despite its lower seat than that of a popular SUV, offers an optimal driving position, and this, quite easily thanks to to the many adjustments of the left seat. The height-adjustable and telescopic steering column is also very easy to position so that the ride is adequate… for a sporty and comfortable ride. The position of the gear lever is also perfect!
When starting up (taking care to keep the door open to better hear the sound of the engine), you quickly realize that the explosiveness of the 6-cylinder of yesteryear has been replaced by the “a little timid” explosiveness of the 4-cylinder turbocharged. However, when the mill returns to its “resting” mode, we recognize this symphony of flat mechanics, the purring of the engine which differs from that of a 4-cylinder in line. All in all, the Porsche Cayman T is not execrable in terms of the sound of its mechanics.
Obviously, the driver looking for strong emotions at the wheel quickly places the wheel on the wheel in Sport or Sport+ mode, the latter being still quite rough for the bumpy roads of the beautiful province. More realistically, the Sport mode proves to be the perfect “golden mean” for appreciating the virtues of this sports car on a daily basis. For the rare sessions on the track, the Sport+ mode is ideal.
There is also this “Overboost” mode in the center of this famous wheel which transforms the car squarely into a track car for about twenty seconds. I was able to try it a few times in the fast lane and let me tell you the effect is instantaneous. When a car goes from seventh gear to third in a fraction of a second, the mechanics shout loud and clear their thirst for acceleration and the ensuing recovery has everything to impress the brother-in-law… or even the one who holds the steering wheel. !
And I won’t surprise anyone by saying that the handling of this mid-engined sports car is very close to perfection, thanks in particular to these Pirelli P Zero tires, but also by all these innovations like the PASM system or even this other trick of electronic magic baptized PTV.
The final word
This 2022 Porsche Cayman T may not be as well off under the right foot, but what it loses in power it gains in agility. Still it is necessary to accept this sound a little too erased from the engine. And the PDK? The manual would definitely be purer, but that dual-clutch unit is just delicious to use, especially with that good old lever.
The timeless design and this Course Yellow
Road holding very difficult to fault
The quality of execution
We love less
The sound of the “flat-four”
The asking price
The suspension is dry in Sport+ mode… the fault of the worn roads!
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