As with its roadster sibling, the new coupé adopts an edgier appearance than its predecessor, with tauter surfacing and crisper lines, including a distinctive swage running through the doors and into larger cooling ducts ahead of the rear wheel arches. As part of Porsche's focus on weight saving, the body is predominantly aluminium. As on all recent Porsche models, the exterior mirrors are mounted on the doors rather than within the glasshouse. The wheelhouses have also increased in size, allowing Porsche to fit the range topping Cayman S with 19 inch wheels as standard and offer 20 inch rims as an option.
Inside, there is a higher quality interior with added levels of accommodation. The two seat layout remains, but a longer cabin provides greater levels of seat adjustment and improved storage. Porsche claims 150 litres of luggage space in the nose and a further 162 litres at the rear in the space above the engine.
As with the Boxster, the new Cayman will be sold with the choice of two flat six engines: a new 2.7-litre and a reworked version of the existing 3.4-litre. Buyers will also be able to choose between two gearboxes: a standard six speed manual or a seven speed dual clutch unit, which can idle the engine and disengage the clutch on a trailing throttle for to save fuel.
The 2.7-litre unit replaces the older 2.9-litre engine, producing an added 10bhp but 7lb ft less torque, with 275bhp and 214lb ft. It is sufficient to propel the 1310kg Cayman to 62mph in 5.7sec and up to a top speed of 165mph, while delivering a combined fuel consumption of 34.5mpg and CO2 emissions of 192g/km, with the standard six-speed gearbox. The dual clutch gearbox extends performance and reduces consumption and emissions, with official claims of 5.4sec, 164mph, 36.7mpg and 180g/km.
It will be joined from the outset by the reworked 3.4-litre engine. It delivers 5bhp more but the same level of torque as the old unit, with 325bhp at 7400rpm and 273lb ft at 4500rpm. This is enough to endow the 1320kg Cayman S with an official 0-62mph time of 5.0sec in six-speed manual form and 4.7sec with the dual clutch gearbox, together with corresponding top speeds of 176mph and 175mph. Fuel consumption is put at 32.1mpg and 35.3mpg respectively for the two gearboxes, with corresponding CO2 emissions of 206g/km and 188g/km.
Underpinning the new Porsche is the same aluminium intensive chassis used by the Boxster. It receives a 60mm increase in the wheelbase over the platform used by the outgoing first-generation Cayman at 2475mm. The tracks have also been extended by 36mm to 1526mm at the front and 5mm to 1540mm at the rear, giving it an even more confident stance.
As with the Boxster, the new car also adopts an electro-mechanical steering system and comes with the option of Porsche’s PASM (Porsche Active Suspension Management) that offers differing damping, throttle and steering characteristics. The Cayman wears 18-inch wheels – 8 inches wide up front and 9 inches at the rear, shod with 235/45 and 265/45 tyres. The 19 inch wheels of the Cayman S are 8 inch wide up front and 9.5 inches at the rear and come with lower profile 235/40 and 265/40 rubber. The standard steel brakes are 315mm in diameter for the Cayman and 330mm for the Cayman S up front, with the two sharing the same 299mm rotors at the rear.
The reduction in height is said to provide a lower centre of gravity – something Porsche claims is at the heart of improvements in the Cayman’s overall dynamic ability. Nothing is official just yet but insiders suggest the Cayman S is up to 10sec per lap faster around the Nürburgring than the old model.