Currently reading: Next-gen Porsche GT3 to have manual gearbox option
Naturally aspirated engines also set to remain; future Cayman GT4 will stick with six cylinders

Porsche GT3 guru Andreas Preuninger has confirmed the six-speed manual gearbox used in the 911 R will be available as an option on the next generation of GT3 as well.

However, the track-focused GT3 RS will remain PDK only.

He confirmed his cars will retain natural aspiration “for the foreseeable future” with the sole exception of the next GT2 RS due in 2017. Contrary to those who maintain the new 718 Cayman will only accept four-cylinder engines, Preuninger said there will be a new Cayman GT4 and it will have six cylinders.

Porsche will also look to offer more 'purist' models in the future as part of regular production runs if the 911 R is a success.

The 911 R will be limited to 991 units because Preuninger didn't want to make any more or have the R become a regular production model in order to preserve the car's exclusivity, as with the original 1967 R, which the new car plays homage to.

However, Preuninger said that "if the reaction is as strong as we believe, we have to find a way to produce a car like that in future models without an R badge".

Preuninger also said there was more to come from his GT division and the 991-generation Porsche 911. He said there "was a book open with the turbo engine and the GT2" in particular.

"The GT2 plays a different role with GTs. It has to be the ultimate beast, not a widow maker but a car you have to respect and is not too compliant."

As for the R, Preuninger said that the original prototype was born in winter 2013 out of a development car made for the 991 GT3 equipped with a manual gearbox. This was created for back-to-back testing with the PDK-equipped GT3 that was chosen for production.

"We had a GT3 manual test car left and we all loved it," said Preuninger. "The manual still had many positive sides. So we took the spoiler off the test car, added some lightweight stuff, some stripes and a classic interior. At this point, I took it to the chairman. He liked it, but we had no engineering capacity so only started work 13 months ago. That's a short time, so I insisted on all the decision making and a long, long leash from the board."

The original plan was to make 600 units but this increased to 991 following strong initial feedback when details first appeared on the Internet.


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