This Is the 2020 Porsche Cayman GT4 for Hard-Core Drivers

The perfect specification of Porsche’s latest mid-engine barnstormer.

Porsche has finally given us a 718 Cayman with six cylinders and no turbo. I'm no fan of the German company's turbocharged four-hole engine, so it's particularly good news as far as I'm concerned. Plus, the new 718 Cayman GT4 only comes with a six-speed manual, at least for now. Excellent. And those who want a convertible mid-engine Porsche with a worthwhile engine can buy the new 718 Boxster Spyder. More good news. But I'm a coupe guy. I'd mostly use the top-spec 718 Cayman on the street, but I'd still play with it at the track, just as Porsche intends many to do. Here's how I'd spec it.

Exterior

Paint: The color choice is somewhat limited, and Porsche isn't currently offering paint-to-sample on the GT4. (That custom route wouldn't be cheap, anyway, as it runs $11,430 on the standard 718 Cayman.) So, I'd go with GT Silver Metallic. The classic hue only costs $650, the same price as the other two metallic paint options: Gentian Blue and the too-glitzy Carrara White. The four nonmetallic colors (white, black, Guards Red, and Racing Yellow) are no charge. Porsche's "Special Colors" (Chalk and Miami Blue) add $3540.

Wheels: There's only one wheel design offered, an attractive 20-inch double five-spoke. But Porsche does let you choose between four colors. I like the standard dark-gray Satin Platinum, as it's a nice, subtle contrast to my exterior color choice. It's free to pick silver instead, which is also nice. I don't like black wheels ($600), while the $600 gold Satin Aurum option simply isn't my style.

Interior

Seats: I'd cough up the significant $5900 for the carbon-fiber one-piece bucket seats. They fit many folks well, save weight, and offer gobs of support during aggressive driving. I wouldn't pay the additional $2160 for the leather/Alcantara interior with your choice of yellow, silver, or red stitching. I like the more basic standard interior with silver stitching. It's lighter and fits the focus of the GT4.

Trim: The standard brushed aluminum trim is perfect. You can spec the darker Anthracite Brushed Aluminum trim at no charge, and it looks nice, too. Carbon-fiber trim is offered for $790, but I feel it's played out. You can also go with interior trim in leather or spec the trim painted to match the exterior color with no charge for either. No thanks.

Options

PCCB Ceramic Composite Brakes ($8000): Not remotely inexpensive but the giant rotors and calipers offer massive stopping power. Plus, they're lighter, helping both ride quality and handling. And a welcome new packaging decision means PCCB no longer forces you into showy yellow brake calipers (see below). If I was going to do a ton of lapping days, I'd either pass on this option or swap to iron rotors and compatible brake pads for track events. PCCB brakes wear at a similar rate as the standard iron brakes under hard use and are much more expensive to replace.  

Black Brake Calipers ($900): One of the best options available on the new GT4. It changes the standard red calipers or yellow PCCB calipers to black. This setup looks good with any exterior color. Plus, they don't show dirt and grime as readily. Why it took Porsche so long to offer this option is beyond me, as the company is making money by charging nearly $1000 for a simple color change.

Etc.: First, it's no-charge to delete the 'GT4' badge from the rear. It's a no-brainer cleaner look. The standard Alcantara steering wheel looks better with a bit of color at the 12 o'clock position. I'd go with yellow. Red is another option. Either way, it's $330. And I'd add Apple CarPlay for $360. That's it.

What to Skip

As with pretty much all Porsche models, the options list is vast. If you want to foolishly turn your GT4 into a Bentley, Porsche is happy to take your money, but that stands in stark contrast to the car's mission. Apple CarPlay means I don't need to spend $2320 on factory navigation. I'm fine with the standard eight-speaker audio versus the $990 Bose system. Weight is bad. The $650 smartphone compartment doesn't include wireless charging, which is weird, but since I wouldn't want either, whatever. I don't need the $770 dual-zone climate control—the standard manual HVAC is fine. Upgrading the standard fixed xenon headlights to swiveling xenons isn't important to me on a car like this and costs $1500. The top-spec LED headlights are $2140 and not needed. Again, I'd want a GT4 that's lightweight and focused. Most buyers will surely add the $550 Chrono Package with Preparation for Lap Trigger. I'm not a fan of the superfluous blob on the dash, but keep in mind that the Porsche Track Precision telemetry app only works if you add that package as well as the factory navigation option noted above. I'd like heated seats ($530) for cold Michigan mornings but they aren't offered with the bucket seats. Not a big deal. The rest of the plethora of available extras are mostly luxury items and cosmetic additions. I don't need fuse-box covers draped in leather ($380) or carbon-fiber floor mats with leather edging ($990). Why would you want personalized illuminated door sills in carbon fiber for $1560 or a carbon-fiber owner's manual wallet for $1040? That stuff is for posers.

Total Cost: $116,690 (base price: $100,550)

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