Porsche 911 R Pays Homage to Racer Past

German sports car maker produce track-ready driver.

by on Mar.01, 2016

Porsche's Oliver Blume, chair of the executive board, introduces the new 2016 911 R in Geneva.

Porsche is getting back to basics with its new 911 R: fast engine, great handling, two seats: GO!

Perhaps not quite that basic, but the new R, which made its debut at the Geneva Motor Show, is a nod to the automaker’s more no-frills past.

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In fact, it was inspired by the company’s limited-production 911 R – the R stood for racing – from 1967, which was designed to be a performer on the road and the track.

Like its forefather, the lightweight, racing-inspired 2016 R will also be a limited-run racer: 991 units worldwide, the automaker said. It will also be very light with a curb weight of just 3,021 pounds, which should make it that much more fun at the track.

The 911 R is powered by a 500 horsepower 4.0-liter naturally aspirated flat-six engine mated to a six-speed manual transmission.

The new 911 R is the second iteration of the track-ready racer. The first version came out in 1967.

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It’ll do the zero-to-60 mph run in 3.7 seconds and reach a top track speed of 200 miles per hour. True to its purist character, Porsche says, the lightweight model is available exclusively with a six-speed manual transmission featuring short, performance oriented gear ratios.

“The 911 R underscores Porsche’s commitment to building emotional and engaging high-performance sports cars with a maximum amount of driving pleasure,” the company notes.

It was developed by Porsche’s motorsport department, and is the third model to use Porsche’s latest generation of high-performance naturally aspirated flat-six engines alongside the track-bred 911 GT3 and 911 GT3 RS models.

Like its current track-ready cousins, but unlike its namesake, the new 911 R features a slew of the latest race-proven technologies aimed at providing drivers with the most exhilarating and safest experience behind the wheel, but also with the capability to be an everyday driver.

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Porsche Stability Management (PSM) has been specifically calibrated for the 911 R by Porsche’s motorsport department. A rev-match function, which can be activated at the touch of a button, is a standard feature, while a single-mass flywheel is available as an option, sharpening the responsiveness of the engine even further.

A front-axle lift system can also be optionally equipped to maximize everyday practicality: it can increase the ground clearance of the front axle by approximately 1.2 inches at the touch of a button.

Of course, the 911 R is laden with lightweight materials, especially carbon fiber to save on weight. This starts with full bucket seats with carbon fiber backrests with seat centers upholstered in houndstooth design, paying homage to the original 911 of the 1960s.

Carbon fiber interior trim strips with an embedded aluminum badge on the passenger side indicate the limited production number of the 911 R. A feature typical of GT vehicles, the conventional handles are replaced with door opening loops.

(To see more about the new Porsche 911 Turbo and Turbo S, Click Here.)

The 2016 Porsche 911 R can be ordered now. In the United States, it will be reach dealers late this summer. The starting MSRP is $184,900, excluding the $1,050 destination charge.

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