Comparison: Ferrari 599GTO vs. Porsche 911 GT2 RS

Chris Harris
James Lipman

Reflecting the stereotype perfectly, the Porsche offers a less exotic recipe-half the number of cylinders, a steel body shell, and a manual transmission -- but the resulting specifications are truly remarkable. Its 612 hp falls far short of the Ferrari's, but because the European-spec GT2 we tested weighs some 500 pounds less, it has the better weight-to-power ratio (4.94 pounds per horsepower versus 5.35). And when it comes to torque, the GT2's 516 lb-ft, which arrives at 2250 rpm, shades the GTO's 457 lb-ft at 6500 rpm.

But of all the figures that best hint at the differences in performance between the two, it's the weight distribution that stands out. Locating the 6.0-liter V-12 entirely behind the front axle loads the rear tires with more than half of the Ferrari's total mass. But by hanging the 3.6-liter flat six where the luggage should go, the 911 GT2 RS goes one better, with 62 percent of its weight bearing down on the rear tires.

You can't hear the Porsche from miles away. In fact, you can barely hear it from a few feet away, although from behind the wheel the suspicion remains that air being accelerated away from the extralarge rear wing might be treating the residents of Nürburg, Germany, to the occasional sonic boom. This car is just so damn fast. You don't need a measuring device to discover that it pulls harder than the GTO; every sustained surge of boost brings a crazed whooshing noise -- like a recording of paper being ripped and then replayed much louder -- as the sheer volume of ingested and recirculated air comprehensively muffles any exhaust noise. The GT2's engine is a propulsive device; the GTO's is a musical instrument.

At the same time, the Porsche won't carry the same speed into a turn as the Ferrari. It stops as well as the GTO, but it doesn't share the same ability to fire into an apex with supervehicular tenacity. But there's a little more to it than a paucity of grip from the smaller 245-section Michelin Pilot Sport Cup rubber (with just 5/32 of an inch of tread -- something to remember should you want to exercise your skills in a thunderstorm); entry speed in the GT2 requires concentration.

Love the article. To me, it reinforces my belief that there is no "best". Just different ways to make you grin hard enough to break your face.
A comparison test to be remembered for generations to come.

New Car Research

Find reviews, photos & pricing for:


Porsche 911

our instagram

get Automobile Magazine

Subscribe to the magazine and save up to 84% off the newsstand price


new cars

Read Related Articles