The 2023 Porsche 911 GT3 RS is clear in its intentions: it is uncompromisingly designed for maximum performance. The 518 hp road-legal high-performance sports car takes full advantage of technology and concepts from motorsport. Even beyond the high-revving naturally aspirated engine with racing DNA and intelligent lightweight construction, it is, above all, the cooling and aerodynamic systems of the 911 GT3 RS that connect it most directly with its motorsport brother, the 911 GT3 R.
The basis for a significant performance boost is the concept of a central radiator – an idea that was first used in the Le Mans class-winning 911 RSR and subsequently in the 911 GT3 R. Instead of the three-radiator layout seen in previous cars, the new 911 GT3 RS relies on a large, angled center radiator in the car’s nose, positioned where the luggage compartment is located on other 911 models. This has made it possible to use the space freed up on the sides to integrate active aerodynamic elements.
Continuously adjustable wing elements in the front and on the two-part rear wing, in combination with a number of other aerodynamic measures, provide more than 900 lbs. of downforce at approximately 124 mph, twice that of the 991.2-generation predecessor and three times as much as a current 911 GT3. At 177 mph, total downforce is 1,895 lbs, or the equivalent of a Porsche 356 A.
A drag reduction system (DRS) is fitted in a production Porsche for the first time. To achieve low drag and higher speeds on straight sections of the track, the DRS allows the wings to be flattened out at the push of a button, within a specific operating range. During hard braking at high speeds, the airbrake function positions the wing elements at the front and rear to support deceleration by maximize aerodynamic drag.
The most prominent feature of the GT sports car is the swan-neck-supported rear wing, which is significantly larger in all dimensions than the wing of its predecessor. The rear wing consists of a fixed main wing and a hydraulically adjustable upper blade.
For the first time on a Porsche production vehicle, the upper edge of the rear wing is higher than the roof. A front splitter divides the air flowing over and underneath working in parallel with side blades on the front fascia that deflect air outwards. Front wheel-arch ventilation is provided via distinctive louvered openings in the front quarter panels. Inlets behind the front wheels inspired by the iconic Le Mans-winning 911 GT1 reduce the dynamic pressure in the wheel arches.
The 911 GT3 RS offers three driving modes: Normal, Sport and Track. In Track mode, the basic settings can be individually adjusted. Among other settings, the rebound and compression damping of the front and rear axles can be adjusted separately and in several stages. The rear differential can also be adjusted via rotary controls on the steering wheel. This is done quickly and intuitively with an operating and display concept also borrowed from motorsport.
The 4.0-liter high-revving naturally aspirated engine has been further optimized compared with the 911 GT3. The increase in power to 518 hp (911 GT3 – 502 hp) is achieved primarily via new camshafts with modified cam profiles. The single-throttle intake system and the rigid valvetrain are derived from motorsport.
The 911 GT3 RS accelerates from zero to 60 mph in 3.0 seconds (911 GT3 – 3.2 seconds) and reaches a top speed of 184 mph in seventh gear.
The Weissach package, which is available at extra cost, includes a considerable number of changes to the standard vehicle. The hood, roof, parts of the rear wing and the upper portion of the side mirrors housing feature visible carbon fiber. The front and rear anti-roll bars, the rear coupling rods and the shear panel on the rear axle are made of CFRP and contribute to a further enhancement of the driving dynamics.
Another highlight of the Weissach package is the PDK shift paddles with motorsport-derived magnet technology. This makes gear changes feel especially precise thanks to a pressure point and a clearly perceptible click. Forged magnesium wheels are included in the Weissach package and save 17.6 lbs of unspring weight compared to the standard wheels.