2012 Porsche 911 GT3 RS 4.0 Preview

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We’ve known about it for months but finally the first official images and details for the new 2012 Porsche 911 GT3 RS 4.0 have landed, and we’re the first to admit that we're all completely stoked. The GT3 RS line of cars are often described as the most sporting of the 911 models but in the case of the new 911 GT3 RS 4.0, virtually every dial has been turned up all the way to max.

With a naturally aspirated 4.0-liter flat-six engine on board and a serious lack of creature comforts, the 911 GT3 RS 4.0 is essentially a road going version of the 911 GT3 RSR race car--but with one major difference, more power!

With no race category regulations to worry about, power in the 911 GT3 RS 4.0 has been dialed up to an even 500 horsepower, 45 horsepower more than the fully fledged race car and more than 50 horsepower more than the regular 911 GT3 RS on which it’s based. Peak torque, meanwhile, comes in at 339 pound-feet, which is only fitting given this is the biggest engine ever offered in a production 911.

This engine uses forged pistons, the connecting rods are fashioned from titanium, and the crankshaft has been lifted unchanged from the 911 GT3 RSR race car. The end result is a 7:27 lap time of the famous Nürburgring-Nordschleife, which is still a few seconds shy of the 2012 Nissan GT-R but still very impressive for a naturally aspirated car without the aid of all-wheel-drive traction.

Available exclusively with a six-speed manual transmission, that’s right, there’s no PDK dual clutch unit offered here, the 911 GT3 RS 4.0 will sprint from 0-60 mph in only 3.8 seconds, and with its gearing designed for the race circuit it reaches the 124 mph mark in under 12 seconds.

Unique elements include the small canards along its front fascia, a full roll-cage, a large GT style rear wing, and lightweight carbon fiber used for the hood, trunk panels and fenders. This all means that the two-seater's ready-for-action weight is just 2,998 pounds with a full fuel tank, resulting in a power-to-weight ratio of 5.99 pounds per horsepower.

First sales are scheduled to start late in the year, with pricing set at $185,000 (excluding destination). Though this price may seem steep, considering that this is likely to be the last variation of the current 997-generation car before the whole 911 range is replaced with the upcoming ‘991’ 2012 Porsche 911, we think the asking price is completely reasonable for such an extreme beast. And, interested buyers better be quick as only 600 cars are planned for production.


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