Rally fans, delight: Porsche has given the green light to a Cayman rally car, the 718 Cayman Rallye.
It’ll be based on the 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport revealed just a few weeks ago. Where the GT4 Clubsport has been designed for the track, and can be bought in “Trackday” spec for keen amateurs or “Competition” trim for racers, the GT4 Rallye will be sold in a single spec, compliant with the FIA R-GT rally class.
The GT4 Rallye Concept Car we saw being thrown around at the WRC Rallye Deutschland in August, with the rather handy Romain Dumas behind the wheel, was based on the previous Cayman GT4 Clubsport, and so had a 385bhp 3.8-litre flat-six. However, because the production Cayman GT4 Rallye is based on the refreshed GT4 Clubsport it inherits the same mechanical upgrades.
Rather than a 385bhp, the 3.8-litre flat-six produces 425bhp. Torque should be the same as the new GT4 Clubsport, too, so expect 315lb ft. It’ll be rear-wheel-drive, of course, and will make use of a strengthened six-speed PDK gearbox. Other modifications include more rally specific wheels, tyres, brakes and suspension, and the removal or modification of some aero parts that simply aren’t necessary, or would get broken, on a rally car.
Why build a Cayman rally car? Well as Porsche’s Motorsport boss Frank-Steffen Walliser said to our columnist Andrew Frankel just a few months ago, “Rallying would be a very good extension to our motorsport portfolio.” So it seems.
As for the R-GT class the GT4 Rallye will be built for, it’s a class that requires cars to be two-wheel drive (or four-wheel-drive originally but “transformed into a two-wheel-drive version”), and no more than 15 years old at the time of the rally. No car can have more than six forward gears and one reverse gear, every car must reach a certain minimum weight, the suspension cannot be adjusted from inside the cabin during a rally, and any car delivered to a customer from a manufacturer must arrive fully built and ready to rally.
(There are many, many pages of technical regulations for the R-GT class, detailed in Appendix J 2019, Article 256, of the FIA World Rally Championship regulations. If you love geeking out on technical details, give the rules a read.)
If you did decide to take the plunge and put your name down for a Cayman GT4 Rallye, you’d be able to compete on WRC tarmac stages across the world, including the Monte Carlo Rally and Rally Finland.