Watch our video review of the Porsche 718 Cayman here
Read our full review of the Porsche 718 Cayman here
The Cayman we’re considering here is the first, so-called 987-series that ran from 2006 to 2013. There are two generations: Gen 1 cars spanned launch to 2008/59-reg; and Gen 2 cars look similar but were usefully improved in all areas, not least the engine and chassis. Build quality, already very good, took a leap, too.
Throughout, there have been two variants of each generation: ‘standard’ and S (the performance one). Standard Gen 1s are powered by a 2.7-litre flat six producing 245bhp and driving the rear wheels through a five-speed manual gearbox. So equipped, they can do 0-62mph in a less than spectacular 6.1sec, although it’s the performance on twisty roads that really impresses. You could have an optional sixspeed manual in combination with the Porsche Active Suspension Management – PASM – system, or a five-speed Tiptronic automatic, which is a little slow to shift.
The Gen 1 S has a bored-out 3.4-litre flat six developing 295bhp and it is capable of pushing the Cayman from zero to 62mph in 5.4sec. It has a six-speed gearbox as standard or an optional Tiptronic.
Standard Gen 2 cars have a larger (2.9) all-new flat six with a new fuel-injection system, 265bhp and a six-speed manual, together shaving 0.5sec off the 0-62mph sprint time. In place of the optional, laid-back Tiptronic ’box is a super-efficient PDK auto. The new 315bhp 3.4-litre S version cracks 0-62mph in 5.0sec.
Naturally, there are special editions to look out for, including the Design Edition and the 911 GT3 RS-inspired S Sport (both based on the Gen 1), and the lightweight R, with a limited-slip diff, and S Black Edition (both Gen 2-based). With its uprated engine, choice of green or orange finish and extensive levels of kit (highlights include active suspension and the Sport Chrono package of performance modes) the S Sport is hugely popular.
HOW TO GET ONE IN YOUR GARAGE
An expert’s view...
Jonathan Leach, Cridfords Garage (cridfords.co.uk)
“Gen 1 and 2 are in equal demand, but while there’s little difference between the S versions, the difference between 2.7 and 2.9 is huge.
"A 2.9 Gen 2 is a better buy than a Gen 1 S. Older cars may have had multiple owners, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing, because with each change of owner, the car experiences a honeymoon period of care and attention. The PDK was the must-have option when it first came out, but now manual ’boxes are in demand as people look to connect more closely with the car.
"Options to look for are 19in wheels with active ride suspension — it takes out a lot of the harshness so that it rides like a standard car on 18in wheels — sat-nav, Bose sound system and heated seats.”
Porsche Cayman problems - buyer beware…
Around one in 10 used Caymans bought privately or from the trade is a serious money pit, and as many as half could need at least £2000 of work.
MISSED OIL CHANGES
Despite what the schedule may say, an annual oil change is essential.