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orthojoe 09-22-2018 03:18 AM

Orthojoe's GT3RS thread: ED and the end of an era for me

I just finished my 12 day Euro delivery trip of my RS and I've got a long plane ride home, so I used the time to type this up. Get ready to drink from a fire hose!

I placed a deposit on a 991.2 RS with Sonnen Porsche the day after the 991.1 RS was announced. I knew I had a good chance of getting one, being #3 on the list, but assumed it wouldn't be until late 2019. I got the call I would get an RS in March 2 weeks before my 991.2 GT3 arrived. I took delivery of the GT3 since I commited to the car and I thought I would have about a year to enjoy the car. Then I found out that my build was pushed up to August since I wasn't interested in the WP and that Euro delivery was possible. I've never been to Europe. I've never even taken more than 5 days off of work in over 10 years. I realized that this was finally an opportunity I couldn't miss and decided to do it. I had several friends interested in my GT3, so I sold the car to the first buddy that asked and sold it to him for the same price I bought it for, MSRP.

Side note on Sonnen Porsche: To anyone who has any doubts about their process or their integrity, don't worry. They don't care who you are. They don't care what you've bought in the past (this is my first Porsche through them). They honor your deposit and place in line. They sell to you at MSRP like dealers are supposed to do. Big hats off to Brett Payne for always being straight with me and helping me with the process of ED.

So, with the allocation confirmed, I quickly put together my build. I really loved and had to have the green interior and green pinstripes on the wheels. I just wasn't sure if lizard green was for me. I considered silver, white, and even black with the green interior and wheels. GT silver was initially my first pick. Then I realized that GT silver wasn't $720 like it was on the GT3. For some reason they bumped it up to $43XX for the RS. My buddies all voted for LG. I figured, if I'm paying $43XX anyway, I might as well get the green since a wild car deserves a wild color. I also picked the green stripe on the steering wheel. I opted for the axle lift because it helps me get under the car when putting on the tie down straps for my trailer. Unfortunately I still need to use race ramps to get the car up on the trailer even with the lift (discovered that with the GT3). I don't care much about scraping the lip because it gets jacked up at the track anyway. The other options were the usual things like floor mats (LOL), smoking package (extra power plug), and fire extinguisher ($140 is a deal for a FE). No PCCB. We all know my opinions on that and I met multiple Germans on my trip who agreed. If we were able to get the titanium cage here in the US, I would have considered WP, but since we can't the cost just isn't justified for me.

Now that I've taken delivery of the car here are my thoughts on the options. No regrets with LG. It's awesome in person and look especially good in overcast or under lights. It gets slightly washed out in bright sunlight, but definitely not pastel washed out and still looks bright. The axle lift is most definitely different than the GT3 axle lift. For once, there is a reason for the cost increase. The lift is no longer pneumatic. It makes a distinct electric sound rather than air when activated. I didn't opt for the LED lights because I thought 3K for lights was ridiculous. I kind of regret not getting them, though. First, the standard lights are not PDLS. I assumed they were, but they're not even though there are washer nipples. The lights do not turn when the wheel turns. Second, the housing is gray/chrome and doesn't go perfectly with the other black accents on the car. I know it's something I'm only going to notice the first month of owning the car, though, so I'm fine with it. One interesting thing was that all of the guys at the ring and at Spa were wondering what the heck the wart was on the roof of the car. I guess only us US people get stuck with the satellite wart.

Next came the planning of the vacation. I've never been to Europe, let alone Germany so I was totally clueless. With the help of a bunch of my friends, I was able to put together an itinerary that was good for both me and my wife. We made plans to have my mother in law watch our kids and the dog and proceeded to book the tickets. A nice perk about Porsche ED is that you can get a 30-50% discount off of business class tickets. Now that I've been spoiled, I'm not sure I can go back. For those of you whose wives are hesistant about doing ED, take a look at how we planned our trip. My wife had a fantastic time and would encourage any of her friends to try it. She loved it so much that she wants to do ED on her next MB E wagon/sedan. We did not do any driving tours. I'm not much of a canyon driving guy. While I can appreciate the site seeing, my wife gets car sick and just wasn't thrilled about weaving around tight roads. We started off arriving in Munich and stayed there for 2 nights at the Kempinski hotel. We rented a Kia (you can get rentals in manual transmission in europe!) and I maxxed it out going down the autobahn at a whopping 110mph. The autobahns in Germany work so well and efficiently. People just move out of the way. It's too bad it feels like almost half of the roads have some sort of construction going on so you have to constantly slow down and then speed back up. We visited the castles in Fussen and explored Munich. Munich was her favorite city. She loved the feel and the shopping. After that, we returned the car and hopped on a bullet train to Berlin. The trains are impressive too. Quiet, timely, efficient, and haul ass at 200mph. We stayed one night at the Adlon Kempinski in Berlin, which is right next to the Brandenberg Gate and the same hotel that Michael Jackson dangled a baby over the balcony. We spent a full day touring the city on our own with a walking tour. My wife found an audio tour app (Rick Steve's audio europe) that gave a live walking audio tour that we just followed. Berlin was my favorite city. So much history with repercussions that extend into my lifetime. After Berlin, we took the train to Leipzig to get ready for the delivery of the RS.

Neuschwanstein castle


Bullet Train

Bullet train velocity

Brandenberg Gate

Reichstag Building

The colossal buildings in Berlin still show damage from artillery round and fire from WWII

Porsche puts you up in the Steigenberger hotel in downtown Leipzig, which is a nice city with a lot of nice architecture and shopping available too. The architecture and infrastructure in Germany is so impressive. It makes the failing city of San Fran look like a steaming pile of dog sh*t, and I come from Detroit. It won't be long before California crumbles too, but I digress. The Steigenberger reminded me of the hotel in the original Ghostbusters movie for some reason. LOL. Anyway, Porsche has a driver come and pick you up in the morning and takes you out to the Leipzig factory. There was another guy getting a black/aurum RS in my group, as well as some people getting their Macans. We started off meeting our assigned instructors for our driving experience. My instructor was a Porsche factory/werks driver who happened to be one of the test drivers that Porsche used during the GT3RS lap runs at the ring. Super nice guy and very willing to share a lot of insights about the car and how they set up the car. Of course, he was right to mention that setup is very individual, but the car allows you to adjust it to the way that YOU want it to drive. One key tidbit that he relayed to me is that the cars are set to understeer from the factory and that one key change is to raise the rear end of the car slightly to dial this out. They gave us an hour on their test track. I split the time with my wife, who loved the experience. There are some cool parts of the track where they replicated the carousel at the ring and the corkscrew at laguna seca, BUT they don't let you drive on that. The short course they do let you drive on is technical, flat, and short. Not an exciting course, but still cool to drive their RS on their test track with a factory driver. The car I drove was a LG RS with aurum wheels (all the cars had iron brakes. none with PCCB). Guys, the aurum and LG really don't work well together. In general, I like gold and silver wheels, but they just don't work with LG. I normally dislike black wheels, but get black or platinum. Silver and aurum just don't work with LG. My wife loved the black RS with aurum wheels, which did look really good. Afterwards, came the unveiling of my RS. My instructor was the one who did the delivery as well, which was nice. You are taken to a garage where the car is veiled in a very nice fitted cover (no, they didn't give me the cover. I had to pay for it. LOL). He mentions that red brakes were a good choice since I track the car. He also asks me if I am familiar with the Porsche track app. I said, yes. He asks me what I thought of it. I told him, "it's nice, but only if it works, which it doesn't half of the time". He nodded in agreement. LOL. My wife was against LG, but understood why I chose it after she saw it in person. The car looks every bit as good in life as it does in the pictures. I told my instructor that I was headed straight for Nurburg the next morning and he smiled. First, he was relieved to hear that I wasn't doing a tourist day (he said multiple customers have crashed their ED cars because TF is a sh*t show), but a driving school at the ring. Second, he mentioned break in. Straight up, they don't break in any of the cars they use. Knowing that I knew how to drive on a track, he had no reservations about me going full tilt at the ring after doing a 700km 'break in' drive to the ring. After that, it was the factory tour. The Leipzig facility is impressive. Everything is super clean and super efficient. My wife enjoyed learning about the process because she used to be a quality engineer. Then it was a very nice lunch at their restaurant. The gift they gave me was a small Macan turbo model. I asked if they could at least give me a sports car model and they responded that the Macan was a sports car. LOL, ok fine. So we drove back to the hotel and in the hotel garage I sat on the ground and proceeded to cover the front bumper with expel temporary track wrap. One roll was all I had and it was only enough to cover the front of the bumper. I didn't have enough for the hood or the fenders. I didn't have any time for someone to wrap the car properly because I had to drive out to the Nurburgring the next day. In hindsight, if I had bought 2 rolls I would have had enough to protect what I needed and the car would still have looked fine for pictures. More on that at the end. BTW, you can fit a lot of luggage in an RS even with the fixed back buckets. One large suitcase in the frunk. 3 smaller suitcases, a backpack, my helmet, and various other thing were all tossed behind the seats with no blocking of the rearview mirror.

Placing expel tracwrap on the front bumper

The following day we drove out to Nurburg, but not before stopping in Bonn to visit the Haribo gummy bear factory store. My wife loves gummy bears and the store sells a bunch of stuff you can't buy in the US. A few things about the car during the drive out there. The car still got an average of 19mpg even though I was driving speeds up to 165mph. The extended range tank is nice. No stops needed between cities. The car is totally fine for long drives. My wife drove a little too and the only complaint was that it would have been nice to have the seat back recline when you are a passenger. The buckets are totally fine even for a 5 hour drive, at least for us. The car on fire up sounds louder than the GT3. Cabin noise might be a little bit more, but not drastic. The suspension is totally fine for long drives and the car is quite comfortable, IMO. When we arrived at Nurburg, we checked into the Linder congress and motorsport hotel. My wife thought the hotel was hilarious. It was completely decorated with motorsports themes. The town was all motorsport and nothing else. It's true what they say about the ring. It is the mecca of cars. The program I registered for is run by the Nurburgring itself. It was called the Nordschliefe sport driver training XL course. It's a day and a half event which included the hotel stay, meals, an instructor, and a full day on the ring where we drove from 8am to 4:15 PM with only a one hour break for lunch. If you can do an event like this instead of a tourist day, do it. They have a side program for those that speak english. The majority are Germans. The night before we took a bus and did a track tour where the bus would make stops and we would get out and walk portions of the track. In the morning my instructor (pro racer on the ring) saw my car and said it was good that I didn't get the PCCB brakes because they are worthless. LOL! They had us do lead follow with the instructor and a group of 4-5 students. After one lap with me behind him, my instructor quickly kicked me out of the english speaking group and into the fastest german speaking group. I guess that time studying the ring paid off some (I highly recommend Brad Philpot's videos on how to learn the nurburgring in an hour on youtube). Then I promply got my ass handed to me by the experienced Germans. LOL. In the afternoon it was open track for the rest of the day. Drive as much as you want, just don't run out of gas. My car started off with about 700km on the clock and ended with 1200km. I had driven over 300 miles on the ring in one day and burned through almost 3 tanks of extended range gas.





Here is what I have to say about the ring: It's scary. It's challenging. It's awesome. 72 turns to not screw up. 70% of the corners are BLIND. That is the one thing that no simulator or video can prepare you for. The blind corners. You HAVE to know exactly where to place the car or you are going to crash the car. Every single turn or section where I am supposed to be flat out, I couldn't do it. I couldn't see where I was going and didn't know the track well enough to prepare for what was coming. Someone totally destroyed an M2 going through kesselchen, which is supposed to be flat out. It's flat out if you get the line right. If you don't, you're dead. The damage was so bad that they had to replace the guard rails and yellow flagged that section of the course for almost the whole day. Even when I thought I got it down, by the time the corner comes up again you already forget because you're half lost. BUT, that is what made the track so much fun for me. The challenge and the allure of getting it right. There is nothing in California that can hold a candle to the ring. I'm sure I'd eventually crash trying to learn that course, though. I'd love to learn how to go 10/10ths in my spec miata there. The great thing is that we were able to run the full course in the afternoon so I was able to go down the long straight of dottinger hohr. I managed to hit a peak velocity of 285km/hr or 175mph. Mind you, this isn't a flat straight. I'm bouncing up and down the entire time. The turn in point for the small kink after the bridge is blind so I couldn't keep it flat through there either. It has to be a small amount of steering input at the right time or you'll get in trouble too. Interestingly, 285km/h is the peak speed that Porsche hit during their sub 7:00 run as well. I was able to hit that speed before the kink and they did it after the kink. Either my car is making more power or the adjustment for max aero they likely did on the wing slowed down their top speed. I'm thinking it's the latter. It was a huge rush to go that fast entering the kink and tiergarten. I almost had my foot down for quiddlebacker hohr and the long straight to schwedenkruese, but still chickened out. By the end of the day the track was nearly empty and I had it all to myself. Traffic really wasn't an issue. People would see you coming and just move over as you pass on the left. My last lap of the day was the fastest at 8:14. Nothing impressive for sure and pretty slow for a car as capable as the RS, but I had a blast doing it. I have never been so exhausted and sore after a day of driving. I wanted more. Afterwards I met up with Tom Stamp and his crew from Apex Nurburg to do a photo and video shoot of the car. They did a great job and they also shot photos while I was driving on the ring. What was my wife doing all this time? She slept in, worked out, and then rented a manual golf to drive up to the city of Cologne where she saw a crazy enormous cathedral and a chocolate museum.



The next day we drove to the city of Stuttgart and stayed at the Steigenberger hotel there as well. Before checking in we toured the Porsche museum. Another impressive facility. My favorite display was the 986 boxster concept car. That car looks fantastic. My wife loved the 996 Sally from Pixar's Cars movie. There was #001 991R on display. The interesting thing was that the car was open for people to sit in. I think Porsche wanted to see how badly the bucket seats would get torn up. Well, they definitely were torn up. Worn all of the way down to the plastic. The door sills were worn through the plastic! My wife was pleasantly suprised with Stuttgart. It turns out that it's one of the biggest shopping venues in the country. Unfortunately when we had time the next day all of the stores were CLOSED because it was Sunday. That was a disappointment. The only thing we could do was visit the Mercedes Benz museum, which was nice. The following morning we did a 2 hour tour of the Zuffenhausen factory, which was more detailed than the Leipzig tour. We were able to see the leather cutting/sewing, which we didn't at Leipzig. We were able to see GT3s, RSs, and GT2RSs being made. I got to see the special centerlock power tool they use to put on those stupid CL wheels. If I had that tool, it would definitely be easier. I asked my wife which experience she would have preferred if she could only choose one: Zuffenhausen or Leipzig. She chose Leipzig. I agreed. The only thing I would have missed was seeing the GT3s on the factory line, which was cool.



After that it was a long drive to Belgium to drive on Spa Francorchamps!We stayed at the Hotel de la Source which is right next to the track. Another motorsport themed track where your hotel key opens up a garage door to enter the underground lot. The track day was organized by a group called RSR. Well organized and professional. The event was billed as a premium track day where there are less cars and no run groups. Just open track all day long. It was a premium price, but it didn't seem premium to me. The track was PACKED. The car count was LARGE. There was a huge spread of cars in terms of speed too. A lot of GT3 cup cars who were just tearing up the track and a bunch of rental cars slowing down the track. I dont think I had a single totally open lap the entire day. The closest was again my very last lap of the day which turned out a 2:46, which isn't great, but isn't terrible either. Eau Rouge is definitely my favorite turn because of how challenging fast and fun it is. Double Gauche is cool. Blanchimont is fun too. I just couldn't convince myself to stay flat through the first part. I know everyone loves Spa, but I personally loved the ring more Most of spa is nothing different than other tracks save for a few corners. The ENTIRE course of the ring is fast, scary, unique and challenging. My wife took a taxi into the city and spent the whole day at... the spa!


At the end of the day we drove to the Steigenberger hotel at the Frankfurt airport where we were scheduled to leave for home the next day. In the am, I dropped the RS off at one of Porsche's selected shipping facilities. I tried to wipe down the car a bit so the bugs wouldn't etch the finish on the car. It was at this point were I noticed a bunch of paint chips on the hood as well as the rear fenders where I didn't have enough film left to cover. Kind of a bummer. It's too bad porsche cant take care of this for you if you do euro delivery. My car completed production on 8/2 and I didn't take delivery until 9/7 so there was a ton of time to get it done before I arrived. I'll have to find some way to fix the chips before getting the PPF on my car when it gets home.

So that was my trip. I highly recommend doing it if you get a chance to do euro delivery. It was a trip to remember for a lifetime. I don't know when I'll get the chance to do it again. With club racing a priority over track days now, I don't see a need to have the latest and greatest GT car anymore. Plus I'm tired of the work and games it takes to secure an allocation at MSRP, and I’m tired of the elitist comments that people around here on RL make. I’ll post up about the car for the next few months, but soon it will be old news and so will I. Maybe if Porsche fixes the system I'll be back. For now, I think I'm going to be happy with my RS for a long time.

Driving impressions and comparisons:

1) This latest iteration of PDK-S is what stands out the most for me. It was already fast, but now it's even faster! It feels instantaneous for real and it addicting to hear and feel the change when you pull the shifter. I used to be an all auto shift mode guy, but now I'm switching to manual shift because it's addicting.

2) PDK vs manual. They are both cool and fun in their own way. I'm fine with either one. Just don't tell me that PDK is more than a few tenths faster on a 2 mile course. It's not.

3) .2 GT3 engine vs .2 RS engine. Feel the same to me. I can't tell the difference. Not like the jump from the .1 to .2 GT2 engine

4) handling and performance vs .2 GT3. Very tough for me to say right now. I've only driven the car on unfamiliar tracks and was not driving at the limit. Will have to see once I get the car back home on my home turf tracks. My initial impression is that it doesn't feel much different.

5) The biggest difference between the GT3 and RS is the looks. The RS just looks much more aggressive, wild, and cool. For a track car, it's the perfect look.

6) Aim Solo DL users: Good news if you use and OBD2 connection. We can once again get brake pressure from the obd2 port so you don't have to tap into a CAN line. For some reason we lost the brake pressure channel in the .2 GT3 and GT4.

Whew! That's it for now. 2 months until I see the car again.

Midtowner 09-22-2018 03:46 AM

Wow. Those track videos are epic! Thank you for sharing!

Chuckuzzo 09-22-2018 03:54 AM

Thanks for sharing! Totally studying your write up for my ED in Nov. Weather will be a big factor for me and determine where I can visit...

RobertR1 09-22-2018 03:56 AM

That’s awesome and importantly, good job on leaving the US and exploring more of the world. The first time I did it, I became hooked on traveling and soaking up new culture. I find the same thrill in traveling to a new place as I do of a new track.

Waxer 09-22-2018 03:59 AM

Joe: epic trip, shots and review! Memories for a lifetime. 👍👍
thanks for sharing!

disden 09-22-2018 04:12 AM

Awesome write up; glad you could make the trip. I’m thrilled with LG as well, far exceeded my expectations. My wife sat out this current ED visit, she wasnt too interested in hanging out at race tracks all week.

AbsolutelyNobody 09-22-2018 04:45 AM

Thanks for sharing, that was a good read and an amazing trip!

Engeljizzle 09-22-2018 04:46 AM

What an awesome trip!!

Your lap on the ring looked exceptional for your first time, you can tell you have natural talent! I have raced it and have hundreds of laps and still feel like I don't know it 100%. It's very challenging, and yes thats what makes it fun!!

<3mph 09-22-2018 04:53 AM

Thanks Joe. I really enjoyed reading that. You had an awesome experience and I'm glad you got to do and see so much and connect with your new car. Enjoy your gorgeous lizard RS! Congratulations on getting the car at MSRP too!

jo_ker 09-22-2018 05:08 AM

nice read! thx for posting! and pls keep the thread alive!

will be long two month.
but at least you can drive it during „winter“ in CA. :)

Hams955 09-22-2018 05:45 AM

Congratulations on your purchase and more importantly on the experience. I would love to do the same but have three small children with 6 being the oldest. We just don't have any help to even attempt a trip like this.

Agreed with your points regarding the acquisition stress. I was originally slated for an August delivery and voluntarily pushed my allocation back to October hoping for PTS. Of course, we all later found out that didn't happen. Whatever; give me a car. I think this new .2 3RS will fare really well over time and should provide years of entertainment. Plus, the flip game to get to the car is taxing. I know my wife is sick of hearing about what is the next P car coming to the house.

Enjoy in health and report back your thoughts with regard to setup and how it differs on your familiar tracks. If it follows like the .1 GT3 to .1 RS I suspect you will find the car has a lot more turn-in and faster mid corner speeds.

One last request - when it gets home, check your rear wheel arches on the leading edge. .1 3RS's would tear them up badly on track. My guess is they alleviated that with a move from rubber bushings to bearings on the suspension. Less deflection.

Congrats again man!

- Chris.

Five12Free 09-22-2018 08:00 AM

Very cool, congrats. I think the non-led headlights look great!

RFGGT3 09-22-2018 08:03 AM

Thanks for sharing Joe. For your first trip to Europe you did it right; pick up a new RS at the factory and head to the Ring, awesome.

Mika911 09-22-2018 08:04 AM

Was a pleasure to meet you Joe. When I am in California next I hope you can show me one of the local tracks. Enjoy the car.

omgt3 09-22-2018 08:25 AM

Awesome trip man. Loved European Delivery in my M3. 2400 miles on total & Nürburgring day. Had to pass on Euro Delivery for my GT3 since it was in December. Congrats on the car.

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