The staggeringly good 991.2 generation of the 911 GT3 is barely off the assembly line, but Porsche was so confident in its performance attributes that it grabbed a few extra sets of tires and leapt at the chance to run the Nrburgring Nordschleife. Based on our First Drive impressions, we knew the revised car would be fast, but not this fast. The 2018 911 GT3 beat the 991.1 GT3 by a massive 12.3 seconds with a lap of just 7:12.7.
As Porsche puts it in its press release, conditions for the record-breaking run were pretty much perfect. Air temp at the track was only 46 degrees, allowing the car to breathe better, and the track's asphalt was hovering around 57 degrees, just warm enough to keep heat in the tires. Add to those conditions that the 911 GT3 sported the rear-axle steering, a seven-speed PDK, Michelin Sport Cup 2 tires, and Porsche's test driver Lars Kern, and you've got all the ingredients for a blisteringly fast lap.
After the lap, Porsche's Vice President of Motorsport and GT Cars, Frank-Steffen Walliser, said in a statement, "A few years ago, lap times like this could only ever be achieved by thoroughbred racing cars with slick tires. The new GT3 can now achieve this with comparatively modest power, but is still fully suited to everyday use."
The 991.2-generation Porsche 911 GT3 features a new 4.0-liter flat-six engine that generates 500 hp and 339 lb-ft of torque. It also brings back the six-speed manual transmission option that was lost on the 991.1 generation.
These performance figures translate to a 0-62 mph time of just 3.2 seconds and a top speed of 198 mph. As for price, the 911 GT3 starts at $144,650, but with options quickly nears $200,000. However, considering you're getting an almost purpose-built race car, that isn't that much compared to other track-focused models.
"By achieving this time, we have emphatically proven that the new 911 GT3 not only provides the best driving experience, but can also deliver an impressive performance on the Nordschleife. If you can drive fast on the Nordschleife, you can drive fast anywhere in the world," said Walliser.