Zuffenhausen has released the new Porsche 718 T models for the puristic driver pairing the base-spec engine with a hardcore chassis – it’s a minimalist recipe for success
There hasn’t been a bad word uttered in the vicinity of either the Porsche 911 GT3 Touring or the Porsche 911 Carrera T, and naturally Zuffenhausen is going to keep this enthusiast-spec going.
But before we get straight to the new Porsche 718 T, a short history lesson… Five years after the first generation 911 rolled out, Porsche expanded the line-up with the 911T in 1968. The T stood for Touring which suggested a lavish GT specification but actually it was the stripped-out base model with a 2.0-litre flat-six making 110 horsepower.
Fast-forward 50 years and Porsche once again uses the T suffix for its stripped-out driver-focussed models, although they are anything but base-spec when it comes to price.
Now the T concept has trickled down from the 911 line to the 718 mid-engined Boxster and Cayman models, so you can buy either in T specification powered by the entry-level 2.0-litre flat-four turbocharged engine rated at 300 horsepower and 380Nm of torque from 1,350rpm. This gets you zero to 100km/h in 5.1 seconds, which is equal to the regular 718.
The difference is in the equipment list, since the 718 T includes the Sport Chrono package as standard and a lowered ride height by 20mm on the sports suspension. The new model also introduces a dynamic gearbox mount to minimise the sort of vibrations that could affect the handling.
In the 718 T you’ll additionally get 20-inch wheels thrown in, a stocky little gear lever, and black door pulls instead of door handles to, err, save weight. There’s also no infotainment system included but at no extra charge Porsche will let you have the touchscreen and ruin the whole idea. The only way Porsche could have possibly made it better is if they threw in some blank switches to take us right back to the 1990s and complete the whole feel.
In Europe where the Porsche 718 T Boxster and Cayman are going on sale first, the price starts from AED265,000, which places them neatly in between the base cars and the loaded 718 GTS models that go from AED307,000.