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This is the new Porsche 718 Cayman

First the Boxster, now the Cayman gets thorough updates and a four-cylinder turbo

Safe to say, we saw this one coming. Like the Boxster, the Cayman has also been given the 718 treatment.

That’s to say a thorough round of styling updates in line with the 718 Boxster, tweaks to the chassis, and a pair of new four-cylinder turbocharged boxer engines to choose from. Clearly, it’s the latter that sticks in the throat for Porsche purists, so let’s begin there.

For the first time the Cayman is no more powerful than the equivalent Boxster, in fact their powertrains are now identical. So, the standard 718 Cayman gets a 296bhp 2.0-litre engine, while the 718 Cayman S uses a 345bhp 2.5-litre unit. Both represent a 25bhp increase over the cars they replace, and both are available with a six-speed manual or seven-speed PDK transmission.

Performance is identical to the Boxster, so with the PDK and optional Sport Chrono pack, the non ‘S’ can do 0-62mph in 4.7 seconds, while the S takes just 4.2. Top speeds are 170mph and 177mph respectively. Fuel economy for the non ‘S’ manual model shoots up from 34.9mpg with the old flat-six, to a claimed 40.9mpg.

Quick, then, and the chassis has been altered accordingly. Stiffer springs and thicker anti roll bars tighten up body control (not that the wonderful old Cayman suffered particularly), while the steering rack is now 10 per cent quicker and the rear wheels half an inch wider.

The standard Cayman now uses the brake system from the previous ‘S’, while the new ‘S’ uses four-piston calipers from the 911 with 6mm thicker discs.

And then there’s the bit where Porsche really makes its money – the optional electronic controls. Buyers can choose to add a torque-vectoring electronic rear differential, adaptive dampers (known in Porsche speak as PASM) with 10mm lower ride height, or PASM sport with a 20mm lower ride height.

The Sport Chrono pack adds a mode switch on the 918 Spyder-style steering wheel with Normal, Sport, Sport Plus and Individual modes.  

So far, so 718 Boxster. The real surprise here is that in line with Porsche’s 911 strategy, the Cayman is now priced below its convertible counterpart. That’s the first time that’s happened. Prices start at £39,878 for the 718 Cayman, and £48,834 for the 718 Cayman S, both around £1,800 less that the equivalent Boxster.

Which would it be for you?

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