New 997 GT3RS – faster, lighter and wider


The new 997 GT3 RS is the first road-going 911 since the 964 Turbo to have widened front arches, as well as rears. The extended arches cover nine-inch wide wheels that have a wider track than the standard GT3. The rear arches, meanwhile, are as per the Carrera 4 and sit over 12-inch wide wheels.

The enhanced track serves to improve handling, which is also aided by – and this will upset the purists – PASM working on specially set-up suspension.

Power is up 15bhp on the standard GT3’s 3.8-litre engine, at 450bhp – an incredible figure for a naturally aspirated engine. The engine itself is mounted, as standard, on Porsche’s new Dynamic Engine Mounts, which change in stiffness and damping effect according to the driving conditions.

The aforementioned purists will be relieved to hear that the power goes through a six-speed manual gearbox – PDK is not an option. Porsche says that the ratios have been altered to ‘enhance the level of performance through the entire range of engine and road speed’.

The RS’s aerodynamics have been enhanced with a lowered ride height, unique front and rear bumpers, and a large, fixed rear wing, made from carbonfibre.

The wild graphics you can see in the photos mark a refreshing departure from the usual ‘Carrera RS’ sidestripes we’ve come to know and love. The decals on the front wing recall those seen on the great 924 Carrera GT.

Weight is saved, in addition to the usual GT3 mods,  by way of a titanium exhaust system and an optional lithium-ion battery – the latter shaving more than 10kg off the car’s mass.

Sales of the GT3 RS begin in Germany in January 2010, with prices starting at euro 122,400 plus tax. Prices and launch dates for other countries have yet to be announced.

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