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Genève 2017 : une nouvelle Gemballa Avalanche

Gemballa Avalanche (2017)

La Gemballa Avalanche est de retour. L’appellation qui a construit une partie de la célébrité du préparateur allemand va en effet connaître un troisième épisode. Toujours sur la base de la Porsche 911 Turbo bien sûr. Dans les années 80, la Gemballa Avalanche était une sorte de paroxysme du tuning. Par ses performances, mais aussi […]

Cet article Genève 2017 : une nouvelle Gemballa Avalanche est apparu en premier sur le blog auto.

Essai : Porsche 718 Cayman, l’ultime compromis… !

Notre équipe vous réserve également l’essai de cette Porsche 718 Cayman dans une magnifique vidéo qui sera publiée dans les prochains jours.

Il faut avouer que nous étions plutôt sceptiques à l’idée de prendre le volant d’une Porsche avec un bloc moteur 4 cylindres de 2.0 litres… Nous avons testé le nouveau 718 Cayman sous la pluie, sur le sec, en conduite sportive et en conduite urbaine pour découvrir en détails ce nouveau modèle de la firme de Stuttgart, un essai qui s’est avéré bluffant… !

 

Qui l’aurait imaginé ?! Un flat 4 turbocompressé dans une Porsche procurant plus de plaisir que le flat 6 atmo. C’est pourtant le cas depuis plus d’un an au sein de la nouvelle gamme 718 de Porsche composée du Boxster et du Cayman. Cette appellation « 718 » existe depuis 1957 chez Porsche avec la « barquette » 718 RSK Spyder ayant remporté de nombreuses courses automobiles comme la Targa Florio. Cette dernière embarquait, à l’instar des nouveaux modèles 718, un moteur 4 cylindres à plat.

Donc, le flat 4 n’est pas une architecture moteur inconnue de la marque de Stuttgart. Nous avons pu aujourd’hui essayer sur autoroute, nationale, et petites routes de campagne le nouveau 718 Cayman. Un seul mot pour le caractériser : plaisir !

De premier abord, d’extérieur, le 718 se différencie du modèle précédent type 981 par des appendices plus agressifs qui renforcent l’esprit sportif de la marque. 4,38 m de long, 1,80 m de large et 1,30 m de hauteur, avec un moteur en position centrale arrière logé à quelques centimètres du sol, nous avons donc ici tous les ingrédients idéaux qui composent une sportive bien pensée. À cela, on rajoute un châssis efficace qui peut être optimisé avec l’adoption du PASM (Porsche Active Suspension Management) dont notre modèle d’essai était doté, une direction précise et un moteur extraordinaire disponible à tous les régimes grâce à l’insertion du turbo. Il offre un couple maximal de 380 Nm soit 24 % supérieur au précédent Cayman, et cela dès 1 950 tr/min.

Notons une particularité spécifique depuis l’arrivée de ce nouveau 718 : la dimension des roues arrières légèrement supérieure aux roues avant d’un demi-pouce procure une stabilité accrue en particulier dans les virages. Cette auto a tout pour plaire !

Une fois à son volant, nous ne sommes pas dépaysés : nous retrouvons le tableau de bord de la 981 doté de nouvelles ouïes d’aération ovales, une console centrale issue de la version précédente munie d’un nouveau système multimédia Porsche intégrant désormais l’Apple CarPlay.

Une fois la clé insérée et tournée, un timbre sonore inconnu jusqu’à présent se fait entendre dans un véhicule de la marque à l’écusson : le fameux flat 4.

Certes nous ne retrouvons pas la mélodie du 6 à plat du 981 et nous pensons particulièrement au modèle GTS, mais vient à nos oreilles un bruit rauque et profond qui nous fait comprendre que nous sommes bien assis derrière le volant d’une sportive.

Ce sentiment est conforté dès que l’on passe les 2 000 tr/min avec une monté en régime très rapide. Cela se vérifie sur tous les rapports de la boîte de vitesse. L’auto est extrêmement précise dans les courbes. Elle est dotée d’une agilité sans faille. Il sera nécessaire de basculer en mode sport ou sport plus pour pousser le 718 au delà de ses limites. 

 

La sonorité de l’échappement est loin d’être désagréable, discrète lors d’un usage quotidien et enivrante lors d’un usage sportif. Elle distille, dans ce mode de conduite, des crépitements à chaque rétrogradage qui nous rendent accros à cette sonorité rugueuse. On en oublie l’authentique flat 6 atmosphérique et sa mélodie si caractéristique… ! Le bruit du 4 cylindres est à son maximum lorsque l’on déclenche le « launch control », aide au départ arrêté, qui vous permet d’atteindre les 100 km/h en 4,7 secondes pour notre version de 300 ch avec le pack Sport Chrono et la boîte PDK.

Cette dernière confère à l’auto une grande facilité de prise en main. La boîte à double embrayage de Porsche reste une référence dans la catégorie. Ce fabuleux moteur accouplé à cette boîte PDK vous permettra, en cycle mixte, d’être sous la barre des 7 litres en consommation. Porsche annonce une conso de 5.7 litres en cycle extra-urbain.

 

Doté de plus de 400 litres de contenance avec l’ensemble des deux coffres (avant et arrière), ce véhicule d’égoïste ou de couple est capable de s’insérer dans la circulation au quotidien mais aussi capable de vous procurer un irrésistible bonheur lors de sorties sur circuit. 

Comme toujours chez Porsche, le freinage est une référence : efficace et performant même lors d’une utilisation soutenue.

Pour finir, parlons tarifs : la valeur de notre version d’essai bardée d’options s’élève à 85 226 € pour un prix de base plutôt raisonnable (pour la catégorie) de 53 960 €.

Comme presque tous les constructeurs automobiles, la firme allemande a dû passer l’étape du downsizing en supprimant deux cylindres à sa « petite » sportive. Ce nouveau moteur flat 4 turbo a vraiment un avenir prometteur car il permet d’obtenir une polyvalence exceptionnelle ! Bien que les Porsche précédentes faisaient preuve d’une grande polyvalence, ce nouveau 718 associe davantage sportivité, confort, sécurité, plaisir, facilité d’utilisation, voire praticité… !

Oui nous sommes bien des puristes de la marque Porsche chez Le Porschiste Pro, oui nous sommes des adeptes du flat 6 atmosphérique et de sa sonorité si emblématique, oui nous avons fait la grimace lorsque Porsche a intégré des turbos dans ses nouveaux moteurs mais le plaisir éprouvé lors de cet essai est indescriptible. Seul Porsche est capable de produire des véhicules aussi jouissifs même en réduisant la taille du moteur et en lui associant un turbo !

Nous avons beaucoup de mal à reprocher quelque chose à cette auto si ce n’est la sonorité, qui, en effet, est moins mélodieuse que celle du flat 6 atmo… Mais si l’on est objectif, le bruit du flat 4 est digne d’une auto de sport et est probablement plus agréable au quotidien puisqu’il se fait moins entendre dans l’habitacle en conduite « normale » et peut, à l’inverse, rager lors de virées sportives… !

Merci les ingénieurs !

Fiche technique de notre 718 Cayman d’essai (muni de la boîte PDK et du Pack Sport Chrono) :

– Moteur : flat 4 2.0 l turbo

– Puissance : 300 ch (220 kW) à 6 500 tr/min

– Performances : 0 à 100 km/h : 4,7 s, vitesse maxi : 275 km/h

– Poids : 1 365 kg

– Conso (mixte, annoncée) : 6,9 l/100 km

Vous pourrez visionner cet essai dans un magnifique reportage que notre équipe publiera dans les prochains jours. Pour être tenu au courant, abonnez-vous à notre chaîne YouTube en cliquant ci-dessous !

 

Un grand merci à Porsche France et au centre Porsche Vélizy.

Speedster n°37: Racing 911 ST 1970

Speedster-37A la une : Racing 911 ST 1970
Vous imaginez bien que, lorsque Gérard Larrousse traverse la Manche pour des retrouvailles avec la 911 S/T qui l’a mené à la victoire en catégorie GT du Tour Auto quarante-six ans plus tôt, il était inconcevable que Speedster ne soit pas du voyage. Le bonhomme est impressionnant de mémoire, il nous a livré ses souvenirs, ses sensations et son émotion à la découverte du fantastique travail de restauration mené par Historika sur cette voiture mythique.
Josué Chevrel, rédacteur en chef

Le sommaire complet de Speedster n°37 (mars-avril 2017) :
– Racing 911 ST 1970 avec Gérard Larousse
– Classic 356 1 500 RS Carrera 1955
– Visite Crubilé Sport
– Classic 935 “Street” TAG 1983
– Visite Slate Grey
– Classic 911 S Targa 1967
– Rétromobile 2017
– Néoclassic 356 B Roadster 1960
– Focus Boîtes de vitesses Porsche 911
– Backdate Carrera 2.7 1976 / 3.0 SC 1982 / 3.2 1986
– Virada Bianca 2017 (Jura-Doubs)

Pour acheter en ligne votre magazine Speedster n°37 en version numérique ou en version papier : hommell-magazines.com

Actualité : Porsche : le Top 5 des ailerons les plus marquants

Après avoir présenté dans ses deux premiers épisodes, ses <a…

L’École de conduite sportive Porsche arrive au Canada !

Porsche Canada annonce que les cours de l’École de conduite sportive Porsche (PSDS) seront offerts cette année pour la première fois au Canada. Ces cours, destinés aux amateurs de conduite hautes performances, ont été inaugurés il y a plus de 40 ans au circuit Hockenheimring, en Allemagne, au son caractéristique …

Total 911 Special 150th issue on sale now

Rejoice, Neunelfer devotees: the world’s only magazine dedicated to the Porsche 911 has reached its landmark 150th issue! Such a special ocassion calls for a special assignment of course, which is why we’ve teamed up with the Porsche Museum themselves to bring you our 30 most iconic Porsche 911s of all time. Even better, we were granted exclusive access to the Museum’s secret warehouse, home to the most comprehensive collection of original Porsche production cars and prototypes anywhere on the planet, to bring the top six cars together, exclusively for our cherished readers.

You’ll have to pick up a copy of our collectors’ special 150th issue to see which is the number one choice of both Total 911 and the Museum, but you can be sure there’s a varied selection in the top 30 consisting of GT2s, GT3s, Rennsports, Turbos, Rs, Targas, Cabriolets, Carreras, Ss and Clubsports, all representing crucial developments in the unrivalled story of the fabled Porsche 911.

Away from our mega countdown, we bring you the first drive of the new turbocharged Carrera GTS – well, actually, we bring you two first drives as we pit the 991.2 C4 GTS against the 991.2 C2 GTS to find out which is the best 911 of the new Carrera range. The latest GTS range boasts a 30hp – and 50Nm torque – boost over its Carrera S brethen, which invites us to look at the history of the Porsche Powerkit and the reason behind its creation.

You may not know that one Valentin Schäffer is the godfather of the Porsche Powerkit; in issue 150 we interview Herr schäffer as he recites some of the greatest racing engines he’s ever helped make. Elsewhere in our special issue, we pit the 930 against the 996.2 GT3 (we know, right) and get behind the wheel of the world’s best RSR ‘R7’ replica with the Mary Stuart collar. Oh, and did we mention we’ve got spy pictures of the next-generation Porsche 992?

To read all of this and much, much more, pick up Total 911’s collectors’ special 150th edition in store today. Alternatively, order your copy online for home delivery, or download it straight to your digital device now.

 

PIC

GTS = Getting To Stuttgart

Mark Webber asked the DriveTribe community to offer up their tips for his extraordinary road trip in a new Porsche Carrera 4 GTS, taking him from the UK to the Porsche headquarters in Stuttgart. See the results here.

Genève 2017 : TechArt

Le préparateur allemand s’annonce pour le salon de Genève. Du côté de Leonberg en Allemagne on révèle ce qu’on a cuisiné pour le prochain rendez-vous suisse. Plusieurs ingrédients assez épicés seront servis sur base de Porsche bien évidemment. Médias et visiteurs pourront découvrir une interprétation de la 911 Turbo S Cabriolet. Cette TechArt GTstreet R […]

Cet article Genève 2017 : TechArt est apparu en premier sur le blog auto.

820 hp Gemballa Avalanche Teased Ahead of Geneva Debut

Gemballa have been very quiet in recent years, so much so that they actually skipped the Geneva Motor Show over the past few years. They are back this year though with an extra-special, Porsche 991 tuning project! The Gemballa Avalanche has been a mainstay of the Porsche tuning world since 1985. The third generation is…

820 hp Gemballa Avalanche Teased Ahead of Geneva Debut

Porsche 718 Cayman review – The entry-level Porsche punches above its weight

For 
Beautifully balanced chassis and well considered ergonomics
Against 
Coarse, lumpy engine, made even worse by the memory of its predecessor

Its new turbocharged engine is far from inspiring, but it doesn’t ruin the Cayman’s fine handling

Since its launch in 2005 the Porsche Cayman slowly established itself as a genuine Porsche sports car. Every iteration and improvement helped it become more than just a car for those who couldn’t afford a 911, until now.

The latest change to the Cayman has not only bought about a new name, but its naturally aspirated six-cylinder motor, one of the highlights of the old car, has been replaced by a turbocharged flat-four. The new engine, to no surprise, doesn’t have the same loveable character, sonorous noise or apparent quality as the old unit. And so the new 718 Cayman, along with its close relative the 718 Boxster, has become the go-to car to illustrate the horrors of the industry trend for downsized turbocharged engines.

It’s certainly not all bad, though. The four-cylinder engine may be less than appealing, but it still hasn’t ruined the Cayman and there’s plenty to enjoy behind the wheel. Its small proportions make it an excellent fit for UK roads while its sublime chassis, and perfectly weighted controls mean it’s always enjoyable.

Porsche 718 Cayman in detail

> Performance and 0-60mph time Both the standard Cayman and Cayman S are usefully quicker than their naturally-aspirated predecessors, with 0-60mph times as low as 4.2 seconds for a PDK, Sport Chrono equipped S.

> Engine and gearbox The source of much controversy, Porsche’s new flat-four turbo engine has its critics. Unfortunately no matter which model you go for, the Cayman is resolutely a turbo-only zone.

> Ride and Handling Thanks to a near perfect weight distribution – 46/54 front to rear – the Cayman’s dynamic ability is stronger than ever. Grip is substantial, but more impressively, the handling balance is entirely transparent, a feat not replicated in rivals.

> MPG and running costs With the rationale behind the contentious new engines based on improved efficiency, you would hope the new Cayman would improve its figures. And it does, but only on paper.

> Interior and tech Undoubtedly well constructed and ergonomically sound, the Cayman’s cabin is starting to show its age against rivals like the Audi TT.

Prices, specs and rivals

For its 2016 update, the Porsche 718 Cayman went through quite a significant mechanical change. It lost its naturally aspirated flat-six engine, gained a new name and replaced the Boxster as the cheapest car in Porsche’s model range.

Now coming under the 718 moniker, that it shares with the Boxster, both the Cayman and Cayman S have relinquished their lovely naturally aspirated flat sixes for a pair of turbocharged flat-4 engines with 2- and 2.5-litre capacities, respectively.

Paired with 6-speed manual or 7-speed PDK dual-clutch gearboxes, the new 718 for the first time shares its outputs with the Boxster. That means it now undercuts the convertible on price but, unlike the old naturally aspirated Cayman, it’s no more powerful than the Boxster.

In addition to these changes, Porsche has updated the interior with a new infotainment system based on the 911’s as well as new LED lighting. The styling has been subtly updated and the chassis has been revised, taking into account the new engine’s characteristics.

Starting at £39,878, the basic Cayman with a manual gearbox sounds like exceptional value, but thanks to a stark standard equipment list it is easy for the price to skyrocket through expensive yet sometimes essential options.

The few notable additions to the standard kit list are Porsche’s new PCM touchscreen infotainment system and Bi-Xenon headlights, both of which were added for the first time with the 718 update.

If you want Porsche’s PDK gearbox, one of the best dual-clutch transmissions available, it will set you back an additional £1,922. The Sport Chrono pack (£1,514), a sports exhaust (£1,530) and cruise control (£219) are other tempting options.

The basic Cayman competes with the dynamically inferior Audi TT S (£40,315) and BMW M240i (£35,420), although to match those cars on kit, one must dip rather heavily into the options list.

A wildcard rival will be the upcoming Alpine sports car, matching the 718’s mid-engined turbo four combination. However with only 250bhp upon its launch later this year, it will likely take a hotter version to tempt buyers away from the Porsche.

If you want an ‘S’ you’ll have to part with £48,834, again needing to spend extra on the above options. At this price the Cayman takes on the incredibly quick TT RS (£51,800) and brutish BMW M2 (£44,080). Despite being down on power compared to its rivals the Cayman S is the best £50,000 coupe on offer thanks to its more engaging and balanced chassis. 

Go mad with more elaborate options such as the torque vectoring limited slip diff (£890), integrated sat nav (£1,052) or PASM adaptive dampers (£971) and the Cayman will be getting dangerously close to BMW M3 (£57,065) and Jaguar F-Type S (£62,200) prices. Yet still, even at this price, these cars don’t exhibit such a nuanced and immersive chassis as the 718 Cayman.

Performance and 0-60mph time

The controversial move to do away with the Cayman’s sublime, naturally aspirated flat-six may be enough to make enthusiasts wince, but it’s been justified by the car’s on-paper performance.

Porsche claims that a manual 718 Cayman accelerates from 0-60mph in 4.9sec, 0.8sec quicker than its predecessor. Opting for the Cayman’s seven-speed dual-clutch transmission trims a further 0.4sec off the time with Sport Plus engaged.

When we timed a manual 718 Cayman S accelerating from 0-60mph we managed to match Porsche’s claimed time of 4.4sec exactly. We didn’t stop at just 60mph though, and recorded a 0-100mph time of 10.2sec and a 0-140mph time of 21.7sec. It also came to a rest after braking from 100mph in a distance of 93.9 metres and just 4.4sec.

When equipped with the PDK gearbox, the 718 Cayman S will reach 60mph in just 4sec.

Despite having one extra gear, the PDK cars don’t reach a higher top speed than the manual equivalents and the 718 Cayman reaches 171mph while the S hits 177mph.

Engine and gearbox

We might, eventually, stop mourning the loss of the Cayman’s old flat-six engine but the replacement turbocharged four-cylinder found in the 718 isn’t going to help us forget about the wailing, revvy unit that made Porsche’s entry-level cars feel anything but.

If you expect the 718’s engine to be in the same vein as the latest 911 Carrera’s turbocharged unit then you’ll be sorely disappointed. Rather than being subtly aided by the turbos, the 2- and 2.5- litre motor is unashamedly boosted, but this has helped the engines put out some impressive figures. The 2-litre of the Cayman produces 296bhp at 6500rpm while the 2.5-litre S makes 345bhp at the same revs.

But the biggest advantage of the new engines is the usable torque they both produce. The standard Cayman makes 280lb ft from 1950 to 4500rpm and the S 310lb ft from 1900 to 4500rpm. The 718 Cayman S develops the same amount of torque as the sublime, evo Car of the year-winning Cayman GT4, but the GT4 didn’t reach its peak figure until the engine was spinning at 4750rpm.

This abundance of torque helps the 718 overcome the one chink in the old Cayman’s otherwise blemish free armour, its long gearing. The 3.4-litre engine in the old Cayman S only managed 273lb ft at a lofty 4500rpm and so the tall ratios often made it feel a bit gutless in slower corners, or if the engine wasn’t quite on-song. Also, as the engine itself was willing to turn at higher revs, gearchanges often weren’t required until you reached quite ludicrous speeds.

For the torque-rich turbo engines, the lack of low-down muscle isn’t a problem. However, there is now less need to change gear as the engine feels punchy even in higher gears. If you’ve opted for the manual gearbox then that’s a shame, as the close gate and snickety action of the lever is incredibly satisfying and longs to be used.

Porsche’s PDK gearbox, a £1922 option, is one of the best dual-clutch transmissions you can buy. It reacts relatively intuitively left to its own devices, while changes are quick, crisp and aren’t accompanied by an unnecessary wave of torque or an uncomfortable jolt.

evo tip

Although we’ve been impressed by Porsche’s PDK gearbox, and it has proved that it’s the quicker transmission, we still prefer the standard manual. There’s a sense of connection with the car that heel and toeing, selecting your gears and feeding in the clutch exactly how and when you want creates that the efficient PDK doesn’t grant you.

Ride and handling

You’ll be pleased to know that Porsche hasn’t been as dramatic with changes to the Cayman’s chassis as it has been with the engine. The delicate and immersive handling that the Cayman is famous for still exists.

For a start, the 718 isn’t too big. With space on the road you have a greater freedom over where you place the car, and you’re able choose your line into and around corners. Sounds like a small point, but as cars get bigger it’s one that’s increasingly important.

Everything about the 718 is well considered, whether it’s the ergonomics and seating position or the weight of the steering and the pedals. It’s simply a satisfying car to use, even when being driven slowly. However, the chassis and the damping exudes quality, making the 718 even more entertaining and capable at higher speeds.

With most of the Cayman’s mass within the wheelbase there’s a real agility to the car. Combined with impressive grip, the 718 is capable of changing direction with ease. There is a slight hint of understeer as you begin to reach its limits, but rather than being frustrating it just helps you gauge how hard you are pushing.

If you spec the optional Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM) it allows you to stiffen the suspension slightly. The softest setting feels fluid and supple allowing you to create an easy flow down a twisting road, while the stiffer setting adds a further degree of control and predictability to the Cayman that suits harder driving. Neither of the damper settings feel wildly inappropriate; the stiffer of the two isn’t too firm, and both settings have their place depending on the road or your attitude.

In terms of feel and connection, the 718’s electronic power steering cannot compete with Porsche’s hydraulic systems of old. But there’s enough detail transmitted through the chassis that the supplementary feel you get through the steering wheel is useful, but not actually necessary for you to be truly engaged with the car.

The extra torque from the turbocharged engines really allows you to indulge in the chassis’ balance and poise – more so than the old naturally aspirated engine. The throttle of the 718 has a greater influence over the car when in a corner, making it easier to push the rear axle closer to the limit of grip and allowing you to manipulate the car’s attitude through a corner.

It wasn’t impossible to replicate these feelings in the old flat-six Cayman, though, even if did it require slightly more commitment. So despite less accessible torque, the sound, excitement and quality of the old engine made it the finer more satisfying car to drive more of the time. And, with an engine that matched the quality of the chassis, the old Cayman felt like a more resolved and desirable product.

MPG and running costs

The main purpose of Porsche downsizing the previous Cayman’s flat-six engines to turbo fours was to reduce emissions in the wake of tightening CO2 regulations. As such, on paper at least, the mpg figure of up to 40.1 for a PDK Cayman (38.7 for the ‘S’) has been a useful improvement.

However as our team has found, real world economy is not obviously better than the old car’s, with the turbocharged engines consuming considerably more in reality than the unrealistic European test cycles suggest. If you are after a manual, MPG figures will drop further thanks to the loss of a seventh gear.

That said in context against rivals, the 718’s overall consumption is still very good, and as such it’s still the pick of the sports car bunch when it comes to overall running costs.

Interior and tech

Always surprisingly practical for a mid-engined sportscar, the Cayman’s front and rear load areas are plenty big enough to swallow everything two could want on a weekend away. The rear deck above the engine and behind the occupant’s heads provides extra useful space for small items, too.

This being a Porsche, ergonomics are spot on with all the controls perfectly positioned and weighted with a quality feel. The driving position is suitably low and from behind the new 918-inspired steering wheel, the dash layout has plenty of traditional Porsche touches like the high mounted gear stick and a rev counter right in the centre of the dials.

Materials and build quality are top-notch, although despite the upgraded infotainment system inherited from the 911, rivals like the Audi TT make the tech feel distinctly last generation. Unfortunately if you want your Cayman with a bit of bling, it all comes via the options list, leaving a standard car looking a little bland.

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Agenda

  • 09/03/2017GENEVA Motor Show
  • 05/04/2017Tour de CORSE 10 000 virages 2017
  • 24/04/2017Tour Auto Optic2000
  • 29/04/20172ème Porsch'color
  • 03/06/2017Porsche Days
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