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Discussion Starter #1
Hi there. I found this site while researching all things 981. I'm in love with this car.
I'm learning a ton and I'm trying to make sure I get the best deal for my dollar.

I'm leaning toward the S but optioned out the way I'd like it comes close to what a bare bones GTS is worth.
So, here's a question I have for my first post:

What really is the difference between the S and GTS when it comes to the power output?

That's what I'm getting wrapped around the axels over right now.
I can option out the S to be less money than the GTS and have everything I want except for the bump in HP/TQ.
Honestly I'm not all that excited about alcantara and could do without it.

I'd expect that an ECU flash/upgrade would be available sometime soon to bump up the numbers of the S. Is there something else BIG I'd be missing out on between the S and GTS going this route?

THANKS!
 

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What really is the difference between the S and GTS when it comes to the power output?
The 15HP bump on the Cayman (325 >> 340) represents 4.6% increase. Torque increase is about half that. I have a hard time anyone could *really* appreciate such a nominal increase.

That said, in one of the million Porsche vids I've watched I recall reference being made to "the beefed up / improved manual transmission in the GTS" (maybe it was Preuninger talking about the 981 GT4) tho I've not seen actual documentation to reflect same. If I were in the market for a new 981 I would look into the latter -- it would sway me toward a GTS more than the nominal HP bump.

Hope you find what you're looking for & welcome the the P-9 swamp.
 
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Ultimately it will mostly depend on how much cash you have on your bank account... But here are my little 2 cents..

Consider the Base Boxster or Cayman, no S, no GTS...

Base: Awesome for cruising downtown, excellent for the occasional road trip, and will never betray you on your everyday commute. If you do not take the car to the racetrack, the base model is just perfect. Just add the PDK and the Sport Exhaust. Maybe big wheels and spacers for looking cool.

If you take your base boxster/ cayman to Pacific Raceways or to the Ridge, after somewhere between 10 to 20 track days, you will get a bit fustrated on corner exits and then will seriously consider a S/GTS/GT4 upgrade. That's two years away if you have no track experience and start tomorrow..

So.. Save a bit on the car, invest in improving the driver. Upgrade later to more horses. Horses you have learnt to master and control.

HTH
L.
 

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I had the similar debate (S vs GTS) when ordering mine. Went over the options between the two many times and ultimately two things swayed me towards 981CS. First, same as you, the anthracite black interior did not strike a cord and felt too dark. I already have a DD with black interior and wanted something more sporty, in my eyes, so I went with agate/amber combo. Second was the budget, as it serve as a weekend car. The options I chose and the discount I received was significant amount to help me make my choice clear.

Now Apr/May delivery can't come sooner:drivingskid:
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the input guys. I really appreciate it!

I think what i'm looking for now days is a sporty car I can daily drive and take to the track/autocross every month. I travel a lot for work and really only put miles on my cars on the weekends.
My current car, an 05 R53 Mini only has 53K miles on it. Since I bought it, I've only put a few thousand miles on it. A lot of those are track days, HPDE and autocross. So track I've got some track experience but not in a P car. My other cars have been an 89 e30 M3, various VW GTI's and such.

I've been craving a Porsche since I was little but never had the opportunity to buy one until now. I could buy a $100k+ 911 now but I really don't want one.
I thought I did want a 911 for a long time and almost bought a 964 C4, a 930 and a 996TT. Not sure why, but none of them really seemed right for me. For some reason this newest Cayman does. I really want one now.

So between the S and GTS I'd option them out the same way but would love the extra HP/TQ and like 981FTW figures, no one can really 'feel' the difference in 20HP. So if the options and the badge really are the only differences then I don't see why I shouldn't just get the S and chip it when that's available to get the extra HP.

If the differences were actually something more along the lines of the jump from S to GT4 then I could understand the big price increase.

I think I've talked my way into my decision. S it is.

I'm really looking forward to getting it and spending the time/$$ to customize it my way.
 

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I have been test driving a Cayman S both PDK and MT when they came out, and drove a GTS last October at the Ridge during the Porsche world show. I felt the GTS was a better experience than the S. On the track I felt the power increase over my 981S Boxster that I drove to the event (which I did not notice when I drove the CS), and the PSE was sounding even better. During daily driving, even a base may be enough.

However, unless you want to get all the options that the GTS comes with, I think the CS is a very capable car as well. And as Laurent mentions, the driver makes a bigger difference than 20 hp (which mainly give you bigger max speed) or 7 lbft of torque.
 
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The GTS has the symposer, the S doesn't. If that matters, then get which one's sound you like better.
 
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Discussion Starter #8
I had to look up what a symposer is. I actually shot beer out my nose when I read its description. I think I can pass on that feature.
PDK on the other hand I think is something I think I'm going to have to get.

The more I read about what's in the GTS I'm more certain that it's not for me. The configurator has become my new favorite game on line! :)
No all I have to do is finalize my wish list and plop down a downpayment to get mine. Can't wait!!


 

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You really have to decide what's your priorities and then answer will be clear. If it's for a track - then GT4 or GTS are clear winners. GT4 has loads of power, but suspension is probably too low for bad roads. GTS a bit more power than S, other than that and a little different bumpers - it's just an S.

One thing is pretty clear by now - there will be no ECU flash for S. It's been 3 years and nobody figured it out yet.

I can throw you one more idea - if you want 981 with 911 power - you can get base, and do an engine swap one of the sponsors here does for around 20K. That will give you 911 powered 981 for about 75 grand (not sure are you looking at Boxster or Cayman) + other options you need.
 

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So between the S and GTS I'd option them out the same way but would love the extra HP/TQ and like 981FTW figures, no one can really 'feel' the difference in 20HP. So if the options and the badge really are the only differences then I don't see why I shouldn't just get the S and chip it when that's available to get the extra HP.
I'm not quite sure what you mean by this. Potential discounts aside, if you option an S out with all the stuff that you get in the GTS, it ends up being more expensive. I'm assuming there's probably one or two big-ticket items on the GTS like SC or PSE that you wouldn't get. Otherwise, the GTS is a no-brainer. That's always what I thought it was meant for. That extra power bump is a free bonus to the people who would have bought very highly optioned S models.
 

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I had to look up what a symposer is. I actually shot beer out my nose when I read its description. I think I can pass on that feature.
PDK on the other hand I think is something I think I'm going to have to get.

The more I read about what's in the GTS I'm more certain that it's not for me. The configurator has become my new favorite game on line! :)
No all I have to do is finalize my wish list and plop down a downpayment to get mine. Can't wait!!


I haven't heard a GTS, but would still suggest that you try one before ruling it out. Many have raved about it. My wish is that you get just what you like, with minimal chance for regrets later. Forgive me if I presume.
 

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I had to look up what a symposer is. I actually shot beer out my nose when I read its description. I think I can pass on that feature.
PDK on the other hand I think is something I think I'm going to have to get.

The more I read about what's in the GTS I'm more certain that it's not for me. The configurator has become my new favorite game on line! :)
No all I have to do is finalize my wish list and plop down a downpayment to get mine. Can't wait!!


Hmmm, not so sure I would dismiss the symposer that readily. They really did get the sound in the cabin just right, and to me that's a hugely important thing that I would enjoy over the life of the car. In fact, I really hope that the GT4 has this, or that they've spent the same effort optimizing sound at the drivers ears. For me it's about getting the right balance between intake and exhaust notes. I've driven the GTS, and they really got it spot on there.

You might consider which options you aren't choosing in the S to keep the price noticeably lower than the GTS.

At the end of the day, of course, what matters is what matters to you. Hopefully you'll drive both and get the perfect car for you.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Sorry about the offhand comment about the symposer. Other than a Z4M coupe, I've never driven in a car that had sound piped into the cabin before. Haven't driven the dealerships GTS yet and I believe it has it. I'll try it out this weekend.
My problem with it has to do with it not being honest. I'd rather install a well made and tuned exhaust.

Otherwise I'll always think of this product when I push that button.

Here's an article talking about piped in engine/exhaust noise that makes me chuckle.

As for the S, I think I've settled on this build:
PFWS85Z0
http://www.porsche-code.com/PFWS85Z0

:)
 

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I believe others have mentioned your budget - for me it's that and you purchase decision factors.

Like others have mentioned, track-use is a big one. So if this is one the primary factors - you might want to consider the GTS.

If budget weighs very heavily in your decision, then perhaps the S is the call.

One other thing - you should drive them all - including the base. the base is going to be much quicker than your mini.

For me, the last few cars were all faster than my current boxcar, but overall i enjoy the drive today much better, in fact i find myself not driving as fast on a daily basis. Last point, sorry, if the need to go PDK b/c its quicker, then imho, you should go look at another car, b/c in most daily driving situations - there are much quicker options to look at - again if quickness is a big one for you. would you drive a AT Mini?

The driving experience was the largest purchase factor for me (plus the discount) in getting the car i have.

G/L OP
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Thanks rjpeaks and everyone for your comments.

The Cayman would become my new daily driver or rather, my Wife's. I will be sharing it with my wife who doesn't (won't) drive a manual.
And since I travel Monday to Friday for work, I'll be able to play with it on the weekends. She on the other hand, will need to drive it every day. So PDK it is.

The Mini will be sold to make room for the Cayman. Our other family car, an Infiniti FX45, will be given to my daughters who're both moving to Seattle to go to college.
My Wife and I will stay in our house in Spokane while she's going to school at either Whitworth or Gonzaga (she hasn't decided yet). She just signed up for her last quarter at SFCC today. So we'll be in Spokane for at least a couple more years.

This means I'll have 3 in college by the time I plop down a down payment on the Cayman. So budget is definitely a factor. I will have to keep it down to or below $80K.

Those are really my only two 'must have' criteria items. My 'like to have' list is very long. But I think I can get everything I want in the Cayman S for less than my target price.
I will drive the base this weekend and hopefully the GTS too if they still have it on the lot.

The GTS they've got is a Boxster so the experience will be different, but I hope I'll be able to see/feel the differences in the two chassis. The GTS is out of my price range but a base GTS could still work. But even after reading everything I have about the two cars, S vs GTS, I'm not convinced the small bump in HP will be very noticeable even on the track.

I do attend an HPDE once a year and autocross as often as I can. Also I attend as many open track days at Spokane County Raceway. So, I would very much like to use the Cayman in this environment and I'm sure that any trim level will provide loads of fun.

Finally I like to modify my vehicles. Some more than others. All of the VW's that I've owned were heavily modified for show and for the track. Same goes for the BMW's (89 M3, 88 325is, and 2007 335i) were all modified. I like to do my own wrenching, I even make my own carbon fiber parts. Latest was the hood for the R35 Mini.

Thanks again for the input! I'm looking forward to making this purchase in the near future.

If there's anyone in the Spokane area with a 981 and they're willing to let me ask a bunch of dumb questions about their car, I'd love to hear from you. I also brew beer so I'm willing to trade some suds for a look at your car and a few minutes of your time!
 

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I have really enjoyed my S but I haven't used it anywhere near its potential. I checked out a GTS Tuesday. It was beautiful and sounded fantastic. Still, I wouldn't use it anywhere near its potential either. I think my next Cayman will be a base model. Bottom line is that you can't go wrong with any of the three cars. Check them all out and get what you want.
:cheers:
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Went to the dealership yesterday with my Wife to test drive the base 981 they had. Manual with sport chrono, sport exhaust, Silver. A great looking car, but on test drive using the freeway on ramp I noticed that it just didn't have power.
The GTS Boxster they had was in the show room and I didn't ask them to pull it out so I could have a go at it.
My Wife turns to me and says that she thought I was talking to her about THAT car, pointing to a black on black, 2007 GT3. HA! I told her no, that's not what I had in mind, and didn't even know it was on the lot.
The Sales Manager over hears me, says he's going to get the keys to that car and show me around it....for comparison. Also because he heard my Wife say the Cayman wasn't anywhere near as nice looking as the GT3.

So, a couple hours later after the test drive in the GT3 I had some serious thinking to do. That car was amazing on so many levels as compared to everything I've ever driven.

Another thing happened while I was in both the Cayman and the GT3, I realized that neither was really for me. I've had my heart set on an air-cooled 911 forever. My Wife reminded me of that later that evening while we talked about the cars. So, thanks again for all of the advice. The best one has been repeated several times now...and I should take it. "Get what you want"....I think I will.

Thanks!
 

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I have really enjoyed my S but I haven't used it anywhere near its potential. I checked out a GTS Tuesday. It was beautiful and sounded fantastic. Still, I wouldn't use it anywhere near its potential either. I think my next Cayman will be a base model. Bottom line is that you can't go wrong with any of the three cars. Check them all out and get what you want.
:cheers:
You have valid points here. But... Say I have a beautiful Japanese katana mounted on the wall of my office at home. It's very sharp and can cut steel, not to mention flesh... Will I ever use it to the full potential? Of course no, bar some home intrusion scenarios. How often do I even hold it? Not too often. But it's a beautiful thing to look at, and do I regret money I paid for that pretty useless thing? No. I see my 981S a little like that. :)
 
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