by Matthew S. Adams
‘Let’s go for a ride,’ are perhaps the least surprising words you could hear along the shores of the Emerald Coast. Hundreds of miles of pristine coastline, unique natural biomes, sparkling natural beaches – what could be better than a good joyride? While a typical, relaxing ride along our beautiful coastal roads and highways is always a treat of its own, doing so with 338 lb-ft of torque at your back is a truly rare delicacy. For drivers with a wild streak, or those just looking to bring some of the thrills of the testing track to the open road, nothing beats a Porsche, and when it comes to Porsche, there’s nothing quite like a good 911.
Keeping in step with its forebears, the 2016 911 GT3 RS continues the 911 legacy of packing a whole lot of power into a tiny space. Staying true to this legacy, the 2016 GT3 RS packs an impressive 500 horsepower utilizing a naturally aspirated 4.0-liter flat-six. This engine, perfect for reduced vibration, better air-cooling, and a lower center of gravity, is capable of zero to 60 mph in 3.1 seconds, and 124 mph in 10.9. The vehicle is also better suited for quicker takeoffs than some of its rivals through use of a reduced rear axle ratio – shorter even than the standard 911 GT3. The 2016 GT3 RS version is also just over twenty lbs lighter than the standard GT3 adding even more to its lightning-quick starting time, making it a real contender on the track and any given blacktop.
The vehicle’s smooth, streamlined frame – also shared with the 911 Turbo – mirrors the 911 that came before it. More akin to a maritime predator than a domesticated track car, complete with louvered vents on the front fenders and domineering rear wing to cut the perfect Porsche profile – the 2016 GT3 RS is a powerhouse with deep Porsche roots. Keeping with tradition, the 2016 GT3 RS also features numerous luxury materials, including carbon-fiber engine panels, a magnesium roof, and an interior fashioned from faux-suede and other textiles.
Unlike other high-performance options, the 2016 GT3 RS sports a fully adjustable suspension and tuneable camber, caster, and anti-roll bar settings – great news for more experience gearheads! With the added control granted by its locking limited-slip differential and Porsche Active Suspension Management system, there aren’t many areas in which this RS doesn’t excel. Additional options, such as a front-axle lift system, carbon-ceramic brakes, and the Sport Chrono Package – which allow drivers to sync their performance numbers through GPS for quantifiable bragging right among other owners and drivers – are also available for upgrade.
What says summer more than a good joyride?
While our area is ideally suited to the slow cruise, taking in the sights and relaxing, there is something perfectly primal about taking to the hot summer streets with a bit of enthusiasm and refined – yet still robust – automotive stamina. With the 2016 911 GT3 RS and its 11.2 second quarter-mile sprint time, car-lovers may choose to take the coast in a blur, focusing instead on the rush of getting where they’re going a lot faster than the other guy.