Puristic, fast, emotionally evocative—the new
The floor is dark and shiny. Workshop space is visible behind large glass windows on both sides of the corridor. The place exudes a sparkling clean, high-tech ambiance, with tools lined up like surgical instruments and engines and suspension components fixed on assembly banks. It’s late on a Friday afternoon, and the weekend is about to begin, but at
GT Project Director Andreas Preuninger walks down the corridor and comes to a stop before one of the doors. “We in the GT team have always had our eyes on the
He pushes the handle and then leans against the door with a sly wink. The room is dark; the only light comes from the corridor. It casts a shimmer onto the floor, the walls, and the contours of a car, painted yellow. Then the door closes behind us and we’re standing in the dark.
Preuninger feels for the light switch, and a second later neon ceiling lamps flood the room with intense, nearly clinical, white light. There is the aggressively styled
The GT project director notes my speechlessness with satisfaction, and then places his hands casually on his hips. “This car is our message to a circle of
While we take in the
Preuninger opens the door on the driver’s side and points invitingly to the cockpit. A minute later I’m sitting behind the wheel, inspecting everything with inquiring eyes, discovering the puristic loops that replace conventional door handles. Lost in thought, I click the shortened gear lever from one position to the next. Preuninger leans his arms on the roof and looks in. “Our amazingly fast 911 GT3 models have made space for a car that places a premium on emotion and the experience of driving. And that’s the car you’re sitting in now!” he exclaims, his eyebrows rising eloquently.
While Preuninger spends the next several minutes explaining the technology in the
And then, of course, there is the mid-engine configuration. Connoisseurs already know how immediately and directly the
Preuninger enumerates the technical features in staccato tones, enlisting his fingers for help. “… Different camber, adjustable track control arms, different coupling points …” My head is already spinning, but Preuninger keeps pounding out the technical details. “Unibal joints in the wheel bearings remove the last elasticity and bring a precision to the car not even found in the
I venture that the GT4 is not only the ultimate
As I get out I pull on the loops that open the door while Preuninger grins. “They’re not any lighter than the handles in standard-series cars, but they pick up on the great
Standing in the workshop again, looking at the yellow racing hero one more time, Preuninger follows my gaze and provides impromptu commentary on the details. “The side blades are not a cosmetic feature. They ensure that the air has a higher flow rate when it enters the injection tract—to cover the engine’s greater need for air.”
When I stop at the rear to inspect the large wing, he waxes passionate yet again. “Anyone can stick a huge board back there, but it’s an art to achieve the perfect aerodynamic balance between the drag coefficient and the downforce, a balance between aerodynamic and mechanical grip. Two hundred and twenty pounds of downforce at high speeds—just imagine how you’re flying along the Nordschleife of the Nürburgring at the Schwedenkreuz, and then feel how solidly the car sits on the road and how stable it is in its response.” That is precisely what I’ve been imagining all along; in fact, I’ve been doing nothing else.
By Till Daun
Photos by Steffen Jahn
Engine: Six-cylinder mid-engine boxer
Displacement: 3,800 cc
Power: 385 hp (283 kW)
Maximum torque: 310 lb.-ft. at 4,750–6,000 rpm
0–60 mph: 4.2 sec.
Top track speed: 183 mph