Porsche is celebrating its 50 anniversary this year, and its iconic 911 is without question the star of its storied history, with more than 820,000 units sold to date, making the 911 the bestselling sports car ever. At the 2013 Geneva auto show, two of the models that made Porsche famous at the track -- the mighty GT3 and its 911 GT3 Cup race car variant -- hit the stand as part of the celebration. The new 991-based GT3 Cup will compete in several series, namely the single-model Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup, as well as various endurance racing, Grand Touring Championships, and national Carrera Cups.
The GT3 Cup utilizes a version of Porsche's 3.8-liter flat six that produces 460 hp at 7,500 rpm with dry-sump lubrication, paired with an optimized six-speed dog-type transmission with paddle shifters. A race exhaust and cat convertor help expel the gasses. Excellent brakes are a must for any race car, and the GT3 Cup comes with adjustable (by the driver) independent brake circuits for front and rear axles. The GT3 Cup weighs in at a scant 2,590 pounds, and employs a fully adjustable front and rear suspension in order to tune it up on the fly at the track.
One of the intriguing new features on the GT3 Cup is a system Porsche calls active rear-wheel steering. We'll let Porsche explain what it does:
The System comprises two electro-mechanical actuators, which are used at the left and right side of the rear axle instead of the conventional control arms. These allow the steering angle of the rear wheels to be varied by up to about 1.5 degrees, depending on the speed. At speeds of up to 50 km/h [31mph], the system steers the rear wheels into the opposite direction of the front wheels.
Porsche says the system helps improve driver safety, dexterity, and overall driving performance, and is particularly helpful at extremely challenging circuits like the famed Nurburgring.
The 911 GT3 Cup is available for motorsports teams across the globe for roughly $234,245 before taxes. While it remains to be seen if the 991-series GT3 Cup will have success at the track, given Porsche's amazing 50-year history, we're certainly not betting against it.