First Drives

03 April 2013

First Drive: Porsche Cayman S

Love driving? Love precision? Love German? Then meet the 2013 Porsche Cayman S

Kartik Ware
Car image

The thing about stereotypes is, they’re true.

Think ‘practical yet evocative sportscar’ and you’ll be thinking of Porsche. Chances are, it’ll be the 911, in all its legendary, folklore-festooned glory. Or the Boxster with its wind-in-the-hair (if you have any) brand of madness. Chances are, the Cayman stands on the third step of the podium in most enthusiasts’ minds. From 2013 onwards, that stands to change.

Sure, once inside, you can’t tell which Porsche you’re sitting in unless you’re a spectacularly talented nerd... or happen to see the ‘Cayman’ logo under the gear lever. But all that matters is that the driver is integrated as a critical component into the car. It’s apparent from the first moment the Cayman S comes to life, right behind your neck. The traditional boxer motor displaces 3.4 litres and snarls 320bhp worth of sweet nothings into your ear every time you prod the throttle. Stomp on it and it screams bloody murder all the way to 100kph (4.7 seconds) and rages past 200 kph (17 seconds), with composure that defies physics. However, what really makes a mockery of that hated subject is the way it handles.

Braking hard, hard, hard has the Cayman S readily sniffing the ground for apexes. The moment you go off the brakes, the Cayman S spots its hapless prey and proceeds to decimate it with a ferocity that firmly puts your neck in the ‘collateral damage’ category; the Cayman might defy the laws of physics, but sadly, I’m not a German-made precision machine and react unfavourably to g-forces. If it sounds like I’m complaining, I’m not. A sore neck is a small price to pay for taking corners like the Cayman S can.

What really leaves me sore, however, is the price tag it will sport. We won’t get the base Cayman - without going into the details, it’s because of our stupid importing rules and regulations. The Cayman S which will be available to us Indians, will likely cost approximately Rs 1 crore, again thanks to our idiotic duty structure. But for the few of us who can afford it, remember that this is a car that’s nipping at the 911’s established heels. And a car that makes life difficult for an automotive icon has to be very special car indeed. One that’s looking to smash stereotypes, no less. Just be wary of potholes and speed breakers, though.

Tags: porsche, cayman, cayman s



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