Cayman GTS 981 First Drive
My first Porsche experience and first drive of the 981 Cayman GTS
For a long time, Porsche has been my favourite car manufacturer, they've always seemed like the ultimate driver's car to me even though I had never had the chance to drive one. Then on one of my days off work (pre-covid) after getting some experience in taking different cars for test drives from dealerships, I decided I would take a trip down to my local Porsche dealer and see if I could finally get the opportunity to drive one.
The car I ended up taking was a 2015 Cayman GTS, it was guards red and looked stunning. It was finally happening, I was taking out a fairly high spec Porsche (although sadly not a 911).
First impressions were great it had lived up to what I had seen and read about them. The interior was trimmed with Alcantara and had the Sports Chrono Packaged, it was an all-round great place to be. With it being the 'GTS' model it came with Porsche's sports exhaust system which when it started gave a snarl, I couldn't wait to hear it at full chat. It had the PDK gearbox and although I'm more of a manual box kinda guy myself, the PDK box was brilliant. It was so smooth and very responsive, the shifts felt almost instantaneous and there was no feeling of any power loss between gears it just kept pulling.
The weather conditions weren't perfect as it had rained that morning so the roads were still a little damp however, this did make the drive a little more fun for me. First off was a 5-minute drive down the road to a long tunnel (what better way to start) to really hear that 3.4 flat 6 scream and that's exactly what it did. Along with the sports exhaust with the valves open, it really did have that high revving flat 6 Porsche sound that we all love and then the downshift with that PDK was even better listening to the crackles as the revs dropped. The power delivery was very smooth along with the sharp throttle response in 'sport plus mode'.
After a couple of passes through the tunnel, we then headed a bit further back in the opposite direction to find some nice local driving roads. We ended on some nice twisty roads that were not quite mountain roads but still very fun nonetheless. With the roads still being a little damp, it would give me an idea of just how well this car could perform off the track, on British roads in conditions that are more often than not normal here in the UK. With 340hp to the rear wheels, a redline of nearly 8,000rpm and weighing in at just 1,375kg (3031lb) it made for an excellent drive. The quality of the ride was great even in 'sport plus mode' and the UK's not-so-great road surfaces. It was stiff but wasn't a spine crusher and it handled great especially with the mid-mounted engine low ride, the car felt very well balanced and very planted on the road. Even when the back end would slip out a bit on the slippery bits of the road it felt very easy to keep under control and get straight again.
We then took a cruise along the dual carriageway back to the dealership and put the car into 'normal mode'. The suspension had softened up and the steering lightened, it was a comfy place to be considering we were in a sportscar only with a couple of inches of ground clearance. Getting back to the dealership was the only bad part of the whole experience as it meant it was time to give the car back.
Overall my first experience was amazing and possibly even better than I imagined it would be. The car definitely lived up to my high expectations and made my passion for Porsche and what they stand for even stronger. Hopefully, when things (post-covid) start going back to normal I can get the opportunity to drive a 911 and experience what it's like to drive one of the greatest and most successful sportcars ever made.