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My potentially unpopular thoughts on the GT3 as track car

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My potentially unpopular thoughts on the GT3 as track car

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Old 04-16-2018, 11:03 AM
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_fletch
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Default My potentially unpopular thoughts on the GT3 as track car

I've been sitting on this for a few weeks now since picking up my 991.2 GT3 wondering whether to post my thoughts and risk the flaming

Firstly, before my negative thoughts, I do really love this car - on the road. It truly feels like a 911 of old. This is a proper sports car. The level of engagement and "connectedness" (what a stupid word but hey!) is mega and I just can't stop the massive grin on my face whenever I'm in it - except when it comes to the track.

Here are my thoughts as a track car:
  • THIS. IS. A. BIG. HEAVY. STREET. CAR. There is no getting away from this. You instantly feel the weight with any type of input. I've come to the conclusion that people calling this thing a 'scalpel' or a 'track weapon', or debating camber angles or downforce levels on these things are just deluding themselves. Of course everyone comes at these things from different angles and different levels of experience but I suspect a lot of people in the above camp are comparing it to BMWs and Mercs etc and have never driven a race car or even a really focused track car. Sorry I hate to offend but I think that needed to be said. The size and weight is by far the biggest issue with this car.
  • The chassis/suspension is no where near as stiff as some reviewers would lead you to believe. There is a lot of lateral body roll which you constantly have to manage. Don't get me wrong, I think they've done and very good job to make something that's so drivable on the road and fairly capable on the track, but it's just not nearly as 'weaponized' as some reviewers claimed at launch. You can really feel the compromises they had to make. There's no unicorn dust here unfortunately.
  • The power curve is really lumpy. While this engine is super fun and screams, the bump at 4K feels almost like a turbo kicking in. There's also something odd happening around 7-8K (I need more time to understand this). Yes ideally we'd always keep the revs well over 4K, but in a race situation that's not realistic so this is a real flaw. I suspect if the 992 GT3 stays NA and they smooth out the curve, that will be the motor to have.
  • The brakes however are actually very very good, especially considering the weight of the car. Only complaint is the ABS which i've brought up elsewhere. The GT3 Fletch Edition would have an off button.
  • The traction out of corners is MEGA. OMG it's mega. I know it's a general 911 thing but this is by far my favorite thing about the car on the track. It can make anyone look like a superstar.
Reflecting on the above I think the issue is that I bought into too much of the hype and reviews that surrounded the launch of the car. Yes, compared to a BMW or a Merc you might consider this 'track focused' but in reality its just a sports car - a really really good sports car that you can perhaps take to the track if you are a casual enthusiast. Nothing wrong with that, and like I said I absolutely love driving this thing on the road. IMHO all 911's should be at this level and the 'track-focused' edition would be half a ton lighter.

OK, flame away!
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Old 04-16-2018, 11:12 AM
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I race a 2275# spec miata and I don't think the weight, presence of abs, or even presence of esc takes away from the GT3 being a fantastic track car.
A track car only needs to serve 2 purposes:

1). It's fun
2). It's reliable

GT3 succeeds in both. The weight of the car is indiscernible to me unlike in a camaro or mustang. The active suspension is as stiff as I would want it to be given that it runs on street tires. I think you are confusing race car with track car. I make a distinction between the two. If you want a 'race car' feel, then you need to get a cup. GT3 isn't a race car. It's a track car. You don't need to trailer it. It is street legal. You can drive it comfortably home. You can drive it anywhere you want.

Where will you find 1/2 ton of weight savings on this car if it will be street legal? Not possible. You are asking for a cup car.
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Old 04-16-2018, 11:19 AM
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Originally Posted by _fletch View Post
I've been sitting on this for a few weeks now since picking up my 991.2 GT3 wondering whether to post my thoughts and risk the flaming

Firstly, before my negative thoughts, I do really love this car - on the road. It truly feels like a 911 of old. This is a proper sports car. The level of engagement and "connectedness" (what a stupid word but hey!) is mega and I just can't stop the massive grin on my face whenever I'm in it - except when it comes to the track.

Here are my thoughts as a track car:
  • THIS. IS. A. BIG. HEAVY. STREET. CAR. There is no getting away from this. You instantly feel the weight with any type of input. I've come to the conclusion that people calling this thing a 'scalpel' or a 'track weapon', or debating camber angles or downforce levels on these things are just deluding themselves. Of course everyone comes at these things from different angles and different levels of experience but I suspect a lot of people in the above camp are comparing it to BMWs and Mercs etc and have never driven a race car or even a really focused track car. Sorry I hate to offend but I think that needed to be said. The size and weight is by far the biggest issue with this car.
  • The chassis/suspension is no where near as stiff as some reviewers would lead you to believe. There is a lot of lateral body roll which you constantly have to manage. Don't get me wrong, I think they've done and very good job to make something that's so drivable on the road and fairly capable on the track, but it's just not nearly as 'weaponized' as some reviewers claimed at launch. You can really feel the compromises they had to make. There's no unicorn dust here unfortunately.
  • The power curve is really lumpy. While this engine is super fun and screams, the bump at 4K feels almost like a turbo kicking in. There's also something odd happening around 7-8K (I need more time to understand this). Yes ideally we'd always keep the revs well over 4K, but in a race situation that's not realistic so this is a real flaw. I suspect if the 992 GT3 stays NA and they smooth out the curve, that will be the motor to have.
  • The brakes however are actually very very good, especially considering the weight of the car. Only complaint is the ABS which i've brought up elsewhere. The GT3 Fletch Edition would have an off button.
  • The traction out of corners is MEGA. OMG it's mega. I know it's a general 911 thing but this is by far my favorite thing about the car on the track. It can make anyone look like a superstar.
Reflecting on the above I think the issue is that I bought into too much of the hype and reviews that surrounded the launch of the car. Yes, compared to a BMW or a Merc you might consider this 'track focused' but in reality its just a sports car - a really really good sports car that you can perhaps take to the track if you are a casual enthusiast. Nothing wrong with that, and like I said I absolutely love driving this thing on the road. IMHO all 911's should be at this level and the 'track-focused' edition would be half a ton lighter.

OK, flame away!
+1
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Old 04-16-2018, 11:29 AM
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I just had my first weekend at the track with the .2GT3. I agree with some of your comments. It is a big heavy car compared to race cars and even older Porsches. Driving behind a pair of 914 on the track I felt like I was driving a monster truck.

I can't comment much on the chassis stiffness, as it's stiffer than anything I've driven.

But I don't agree on the power curve. I think it's really smooth and very predictable. There is a slight change around 4K, but looking at my data from this weekend, I never fell below 4500rpms during most of my runs.
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Old 04-16-2018, 11:29 AM
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Originally Posted by _fletch View Post
  • The power curve is really lumpy. While this engine is super fun and screams, the bump at 4K feels almost like a turbo kicking in. ...
997.2 GT3 does the same at 4200RPM upon varying cams, it feels very linear although the take up is at a much faster rate, but it can be overwhelming to some. E.g. On the highway, I will start a pass on an unwieldy Prius contender, complete it and look down to see astonishing extra legal speeds displayed.
It is an exercise in restraint that I keep failing at.

Is that really so bad?

I think not and IMHO would suggest you change this point from a negative to a positive
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Old 04-16-2018, 11:40 AM
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I think the .2 GT3 is a fantastically entertaining street car which was, and is, my, primary expectation. As an occasional track day car it meets my admittedly low expectations. All the modern Porsches are too large but one can argue, for instance, that the Ferrari 458 (last NA V8) is proportionately much larger than the 308/355 that went before it. It should not come as a revelation that the GT3 is primarily a street car and not a true race car.
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Old 04-16-2018, 11:40 AM
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With the Dr's opinion :
cann't put a license plate on a race car .
But I have one on the back of my GT3 car
which happens to have thousands of miles on track,
and generally ahead of the pack
which happily keeps bringing me back!

Last edited by R.Deacon; 04-16-2018 at 02:14 PM.
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Old 04-16-2018, 11:45 AM
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Originally Posted by orthojoe View Post
I race a 2275# spec miata and I don't think the weight, presence of abs, or even presence of esc takes away from the GT3 being a fantastic track car.
A track car only needs to serve 2 purposes:

1). It's fun
2). It's reliable

GT3 succeeds in both. The weight of the car is indiscernible to me unlike in a camaro or mustang. The active suspension is as stiff as I would want it to be given that it runs on street tires. I think you are confusing race car with track car. I make a distinction between the two. If you want a 'race car' feel, then you need to get a cup. GT3 isn't a race car. It's a track car. You don't need to trailer it. It is street legal. You can drive it comfortably home. You can drive it anywhere you want.

Where will you find 1/2 ton of weight savings on this car if it will be street legal? Not possible. You are asking for a cup car.
agree w joe's comments on this 100% - one's perspective is all a function of what one has as a frame of reference

grip is real good on a cup 2 unless u compare it to a true slick
gt3/rs is really good on track till u compare it to a cup car
hellcat 700 hp is fast off the line until u compare it to a dragster

gt3/rs is a dual purpose car that can be driven on the street yet provide thrills on track without melting
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Old 04-16-2018, 11:48 AM
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Originally Posted by _fletch View Post
I've been sitting on this for a few weeks now since picking up my 991.2 GT3 wondering whether to post my thoughts and risk the flaming

Firstly, before my negative thoughts, I do really love this car - on the road. It truly feels like a 911 of old. This is a proper sports car. The level of engagement and "connectedness" (what a stupid word but hey!) is mega and I just can't stop the massive grin on my face whenever I'm in it - except when it comes to the track.

Here are my thoughts as a track car:
  • THIS. IS. A. BIG. HEAVY. STREET. CAR. There is no getting away from this. You instantly feel the weight with any type of input. I've come to the conclusion that people calling this thing a 'scalpel' or a 'track weapon', or debating camber angles or downforce levels on these things are just deluding themselves. Of course everyone comes at these things from different angles and different levels of experience but I suspect a lot of people in the above camp are comparing it to BMWs and Mercs etc and have never driven a race car or even a really focused track car. Sorry I hate to offend but I think that needed to be said. The size and weight is by far the biggest issue with this car.
  • The chassis/suspension is no where near as stiff as some reviewers would lead you to believe. There is a lot of lateral body roll which you constantly have to manage. Don't get me wrong, I think they've done and very good job to make something that's so drivable on the road and fairly capable on the track, but it's just not nearly as 'weaponized' as some reviewers claimed at launch. You can really feel the compromises they had to make. There's no unicorn dust here unfortunately.
  • The power curve is really lumpy. While this engine is super fun and screams, the bump at 4K feels almost like a turbo kicking in. There's also something odd happening around 7-8K (I need more time to understand this). Yes ideally we'd always keep the revs well over 4K, but in a race situation that's not realistic so this is a real flaw. I suspect if the 992 GT3 stays NA and they smooth out the curve, that will be the motor to have.
  • The brakes however are actually very very good, especially considering the weight of the car. Only complaint is the ABS which i've brought up elsewhere. The GT3 Fletch Edition would have an off button.
  • The traction out of corners is MEGA. OMG it's mega. I know it's a general 911 thing but this is by far my favorite thing about the car on the track. It can make anyone look like a superstar.
Reflecting on the above I think the issue is that I bought into too much of the hype and reviews that surrounded the launch of the car. Yes, compared to a BMW or a Merc you might consider this 'track focused' but in reality its just a sports car - a really really good sports car that you can perhaps take to the track if you are a casual enthusiast. Nothing wrong with that, and like I said I absolutely love driving this thing on the road. IMHO all 911's should be at this level and the 'track-focused' edition would be half a ton lighter.

OK, flame away!
Iím curious what you are comparing it to? It is lighter than every car in the category except Lotus and McLaren. It also out performs everything in the caregory. If you are comparing it to a track car then sure it is heavy and has body roll. At the end of the day it is a street car. It is a luxury high end sports car. As far as the torque bump, Iím never under 4k rpm at the track so I would not notice. Were you in the right gear?
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Old 04-16-2018, 11:57 AM
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OP, we try not to flame anyone here, and appreciate your comments and feedback. The way I look at it, when I was in the market for a "toy" I wanted something that was street legal first, and track capable second. Maybe 80/20. So any comparison and comments about the car would be from that perspective. I also wanted some creature comforts, and reliability. I suspect most guys that bought a GT3 had a similar perspective going in. In that context, the GT3 is light, nimble, super capable on track, and a great dual purpose toy. Nothing else like it in this price range. If any of us prioritized the track above all else, meaning street legal wasn't required, we would have bought something else. What is this Alcantara and leather crap all over the place?!

Track-only cars will always be better for the track, because they do not have to make compromises that the GT3 makes for the street. I personally didn't want a track-only car, but at some point might reconsider. So I think your situation is more about expecting the GT3 to be more of a track car, when that was never the primary aim. Maybe you should look at a Cup car? It sounds like you really want a track car, and not a street car that is track capable.
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Old 04-16-2018, 11:58 AM
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Originally Posted by drdonger View Post


Iím curious what you are comparing it to? It is lighter than every car in the category except Lotus and McLaren. It also out performs everything in the caregory. If you are comparing it to a track car then sure it is heavy and has body roll. At the end of the day it is a street car. It is a luxury high end sports car. As far as the torque bump, Iím never under 4k rpm at the track so I would not notice. Were you in the right gear?
+1. this is a trackable street car, not the other way around. if the GT3 wasn't a good road car first, it would be a failure. there's a Cup car available for a reason.
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Old 04-16-2018, 12:01 PM
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Originally Posted by golfnutintib View Post
agree w joe's comments on this 100% - one's perspective is all a function of what one has a frame of reference

grip is real good on a cup 2 unless u compare it to a true slick
gt3/rs is really good on track till u compare it to a cup car
hellcat 700 hp is fast off the line until u compare it to a dragster

gt3/rs is a dual purpose car that can be driven on the street yet provide thrills on track without melting
I pretty much agree with all of this, and the other posters above as well (all of which have been refreshingly civilized!!).

Yes point of reference is everything and I should clarify that I didn't mean to compare it to race cars (but I did sorry!). I guess my main beef is with many of the reviews and some of the posts on here that make this thing out to be 'the race car you can drive on the road' etc etc. I think this aspect of it was wildly over-blown and exaggerated. As other's have pointed out, this is a street car that is track capable, not the other way round as some reviews make out.
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Old 04-16-2018, 12:02 PM
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Compared to what?

-Not big and heavy compared to whatever else is in the showroom now that's dependable and you can daily drive.
-A track car that's street legal is a compromise in general?
-Why wouldn't staying over 4000rpm in any condition on track be an issue? You should never be under 6K?
-What's the ABS issue?

half a ton isn't going to happen unless you go back in time.

Maybe you need a pre 1990 911?
Times before the smart phone were "better" some can, some can't.
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Old 04-16-2018, 12:03 PM
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Also, to follow the cup car line of thought, most any real race car (that cannot be driven on the street) will spank a GT3 on the track.

Trackable street car - good term.
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Old 04-16-2018, 12:11 PM
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Hey everybody, water is wet........
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