The Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 is to the Cayman range what the GT3 is to the 911 - a track-ready car that's usable every day - and comes standard with a six-speed stick shift. The 718 Cayman GT4 RS, which we review separately, mirrors the 911 GT3 RS and is more hardcore - and only available as a PDK automatic. Soon, that will be the only GT4 you'll be able to get, as the 2023 Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 on review here enters its last model year. The GT4 elevates the Cayman to a new plane and gives the mid-engined platform the engine it deserves - a 414-horsepower 4.0-liter flat six - and a far better soundtrack than the anodyne four-cylinder Caymans. In fact, with the starting price of the 2023 Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 being similar to a base Porsche 911, it's GT4 all the way for us, thank you very much, with its exuberant 8,000-rpm naturally aspirated six-cylinder and gravity-defying handling. The upcoming Lotus Emira will arrive just in time for the GT4's farewell party, providing similar mid-engined thrills for less money, but right now, your best alternative is the quite incredible Chevrolet Corvette Z06. The GT4 won't have it all its own way, then.
The 2023 718 Cayman GT4 goes into its last model year unchanged, except for the availability of one additional paint color called Arctic Grey - a hue previously reserved for the GT4 RS - and the addition of standard Apple CarPlay to the infotainment system - which was an extra-cost option last year. There's still no Android Auto, though. As is typical nowadays, the price of a new Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 coupe is significantly higher this year, at over $106k, an increase of more than $5k in the USA.
The MSRP of the Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 is $106,500 this year, but this excludes the destination fee, which adds an additional $1,450 to the cost of the car.
See trim levels and configurations:
4.0L Flat 6 Gas
Standard Porsche Active Suspension Management means that you can slacken off the ride for everyday use, making the GT4 an excellent daily driver that manages to round the sharp edges off of road scars, even if it's not exactly pillowy soft. We suggest sticking to the standard seats unless you're going to do lots of track time, because the optional carbon bucket seats offer far less cushioning to road shocks. In its stiffest setting, the adaptive suspension all but eliminates body roll, and in typical mid-engined fashion, the GT4 pivots around the driver on turn-in; it's so inertia-free, it's as if it's telepathic. The steering has decent heft to it, making it easy to add lock with surgical precision. Unlike today's always-on turbocharged engines, the joyful naturally aspirated 4.0 pulls harder and harder as it reaches the upper reaches of the rev counter, and the gear lever finds the gates quickly and accurately. You feel part of the action, because being in the right gear matters with a highly strung naturally aspirated sports car. Or you can just pick the ruthlessly efficient - and faster - PDK auto. We'll have the interactive manual, thank you.
The GT4 is a superb distillation of what the Cayman should be, with a howling flat six and a sweet-shifting manual gearbox to keep you entertained. It's just as well because it's short on features and amenities since it's a driver's car above all else. At this price, it's a more fulfilling steer than a base 911, but the Lotus Emira looks like a credible threat, and the Corvette Z06 is simply astonishing at the price. Still, that the GT4 loses out on a few metrics to rivals will matter little to fans, and that manual gearbox is something not even the superb Corvette has an answer to.
There's just one GT4 trim, so it's down to manual or auto. Bald numbers go the way of the PDK, as it's way faster and more efficient than a human can change gears, but try both, as the manual may just win you over with its charm and old-school interactivity - a rarity nowadays. In terms of extras, we'd consider the Sport Chrono package and the adaptive sport seats to make the most of the GT4's abilities and improve everyday comfort.
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