Porsche has introduced the new 911 GT3 R, and the car will be ready to make its racing debut early next year. Development began in 2019 for the 992-generation-based customer race car, with Porsche focusing on improving its drivability, streamlining its handling, and reducing its running costs.
Many of the improvements Porsche made are designed to make the race car easier to drive for a broader skillset of drivers. That includes a new suspension that makes steering more precise and reduces wear on the rear tyres. Its KW shock absorbers offer five adjustment settings.
Gallery: Porsche 911 GT3 R
The suspension, double-wishbone at the front and multi-link at the rear, also allows the car to have an elevated underbody that helps airflow reach the rear diffuser without significantly increasing drag. The rear wing now features a swan-neck mount, which further improves the car’s aerodynamics. Helping with the handling and tyre wear is the wheelbase extension. Porsche moved the rear wheels further back, extending the wheelbase from 2,459 millimetres (8.0 feet) to 2,507 mm (8.22 ft.).
Powering the Porsche’s new customer racer is a 4.2-litre naturally aspirated flat-six engine, which is up from 4.0 litres in size. The engine can produce up to 557 bhp (416 kilowatts), which routes through a sequential six-speed contest-mesh gearbox with paddle shifters, which Porsche derived from the 911 GT3 Cup race car.
Porsche tilted the engine forward by 5.5 degrees to create enough space for the underbody diffuser, which forced the company to relocate some auxiliary engine components. This helped improve the car’s weight balance.
Inside, Porsche met the FIA’s newly developed impact protection mandates by moving the seats closer to the car's centre. This also allowed Porsche to improve the racer’s roll cage. Adjustable pedals and steering wheel offset the fixed seating position. Improved clasps for the six-point racing harness will help save about one second during driver changes.
The Porsche 911 GT3 R will be ready to race at the beginning of next year’s GT3 season, which kicks off with the Rolex 24 at Daytona next January. The car will cost $567,210, and it’s only available for purchase through Porsche Motorsport North America for customers in the US and Canada. Thanks to changes with the FIA, the car will be eligible to race in the 24 Hours of Le Mans for the first time.