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Discussion in 'Gran Turismo Sport' started by Racer283, Sep 4, 2018.
We are Live with COTW, Feel free to join us in the races or watch on Twitch.
If you forced me I'd take the EVO but this gen is weak AF.
THey should be bringing back the EVO 7-9... the SIX especially, the TME and the bug-eye WRX etc. the blue 555.
This new gen with DSG and the 3,500lb weight is just.... ewww..
So verdict is a sleeper?
The Gr4 Showdown: WRX vs. Evo
WRX vs Evo X Gr. 4 Quickie Review
Full disclosure: I've never driven either car prior to the COTW race, as AWD cars are horrendously uncompetitive in Gr. 4, given most events nowadays include tyre wear, which instantly excludes anything FF or AWD. Thus, my opinions are based solely on the hour-ish I've spent swapping between them in the COTW races, with zero practice. As such, this is more of a first/ mid impression ramble than a review.
Generally speaking, both the WRX and Evo X in their Gr. 4 guises are unremarkable drives. I know the word comes with a negative connotation, but I mean that in the most complimentary way that I can: there is no drama involved in the driving experience, and very little stuck out to me as the driver, and the car will never act in a way a driver doesn't expect. You point it in a direction, stab at the gas, and it goes, no ifs, no buts. About the only noteworthy thing, and it is THE thing to keep in mind if you're to wring every last hundredth of a second from these AWD sedans, is of course, the understeer. Even without tyre wear. these cars inherently understeer. While Gr. 4 cars don't come with an adjustable centre differential, these cars feel very close to a 50/50 torque split, with the only instance of the rear stepping out is trying to launch the car from a standstill while the steering wheel is turned with dirty tyres, such as when trying to rejoin a track after understeering wide.
Race 1: Evo X
The first track we ran on, albeit with an accidental race start, was Maggiore East. I drove the Evo X first, and in practice, I found the front end a bit numb to steer under trail braking. Maggiore is a track that I feel is very apt in front tyre murder, and is thus a very steep test and challenge for these front engined, AWD sedans, and quite a rude first choice for a track, heh. Turn 5 in particular, is a slight downhill, long braking zone from 5th to low 3rd, with the apex nestled deep into the turn that begins gently, but rapidly tightens before transitioning into the power zone. This was the turn that made me decide on a -2 Brake Bias (front) for the Evo, as otherwise I find that the front end just does not want to bite in.
Being an AWD car with a criminally conservative torque split, stability is of course this car's trump card. While Maggiore is a very front tyre shredding track as I noted earlier, it is also a track that highly encourages, and necessitates, rumble strip and curb abuse. Rumble strips here are so wide and deep you could fit an entire car into them, so making the most of them with your racing lines is key to a good lap time here. In faster machinery, such as Gr. 3, cars always feel nervous and hoppy on these curbs; so much so that it's debatable if the bumpiness makes extreme curb abuse faster than just staying on the smooth, paved stuff. In these cars, the curbs hardly register with the cars. Therefore, it wasn't long before the race turned into a "how much can I cut the corner" mini game.
This much, apparently.
I like to take my corners the way I like to take my women: barely legal.
(crap I really shouldn't have said that out loud should I?)
It only took the first race on a shortened Maggiore circuit for me to realise the Evo's third biggest weakness, third only to tyre wear and understeer, because even its third weakness is very prominent and glaring: its abysmal gearing. The Evo X's gearing is not only tall, but it's also very unfortunate. I find often that whenever I drive this thing, I always need to shift up into 5th when there's just about half a second left of full throttle before the braking zone comes. And it's freaking annoying, because this car just doesn't feel well sorted at all. At least, it just doesn't suit my driving style. I keep wanting more from the engine, the tyres, the gearing, but it emphatically denies me each and every time.
Above: Exhibit A, showing the Evo X's unfortunate gearing on the home straight of Maggiore.
Race 2: WRX
Race 2 was held in Dragon Trail Gardens, which from what I can gather is a COTW favourite. I hate this track though, what with its nonsensical quintuple right complex, and yet another Chicane of Death (yes, in case you couldn't tell, the only reason I hate Gardens is because I can't get it right). Hopping into a WRX right after the Evo, what immediately struck me was how much more willing the WRX was to rotate when the steering wheel was turned, and is MUCH less reliant on brake bias to get the front to bite in, although similarly to the Evo, a front brake bias does still help the WRX, just to a smaller extent. Perhaps this is due to a tighter suspension setup in the WRX, but I feel that the reason it turns better in comparison to the Evo is because there's less pitch and roll in the body, and as such everything is just a bit more immediate. I've caught some ridiculous air in the WRX in the Chicane of Death, what with their built in speed humps, which makes me think I'm right in the tighter suspension setup theory. I haven't tried running the Evo over the speed humps to compare, though. What I can tell you however, is that, even while catching air, both cars handle the landing with almost indifference, thanks not to their suspension setup, but, again, the AWD system each has. If you caught air in an MR car in the Chicane of Death, they would have spun you out and spit you into the nearest available barrier, no questions asked.
Race 2 was also when we turned on BoP for the first time. While Race 1, both the Evo and WRX looked to be on equal footing off the line, with BoP on the Evo bogged down like it broke a driveshaft or something and became 2WD. Here's a comparison of the launches from Races 1 (no BoP) and 2 (BoP):
Race 1 Launch:
All cars are in their starting positions into T1, gap is maintained.
Race 2 Launch:
In case the gif doesn't play for you, let me try to put the difference into words.
1st: Rob_on_Drums (Evo)2nd: Me (WRX)
3rd: wtru9 (Evo)4th: Victory_Reign93 (Evo)
5th: MustangLover2015 (WRX)
On the short launch to T1 at Gardens, I immediately took the lead from the Evo who started in first. The WRX that started in FIFTH sprung up to 2nd, beating out even the pole sitter, Rob. Granted, Rob could've been a lot more defensive into T1, but can you blame the guy for not expecting his car to be so trash that someone from 5th could've overhauled him at launch? I really don't understand why the Evo bogs down so hard with BoP, seeing as both cars are minimally affected by BoP.
For reference, BoP for the Evo and WRX in Gr. 4 as of Version 1.56:
Power: 399PS (101%)
Mass: 1,343kg (101%)
Power: 383PS (100%)
Mass: 1,333kg (101%)
In fact, if anything, the WRX is the one that got nerfed by BoP on paper. What, can the gears in the Evo, taller than the Empire State Building, not handle an extra 1% mass increase? Is the 1% power increase only at redline?
I think, with just these two races, I am already ready to declare the WRX to be the much better car than the Evo, on the sole basis that the WRX hasn't given me anything to complain about, or showed any part of its weakness to be easily fixable.
Race 3: Evo
Race 3 was held in Kyoto Driving Park: Yamagiwa. With more people in the lobbies, and now with a previous race to reverse grid start off of, this race got... really messy. While not on the same league as Maggiore in terms of corner cutting, there is ONE chicane complex at Yamagiwa that has to be shamelessly cut:
You may not like it, but this is what peak performance looks like.
Even if this corner cut is less official than the one at Maggiore, given that you're driving on grass rather than man made runoff and rumble strips, this cut is actually rather brain dead easy in the Evo, in terms of keeping the car's composure. The difficulty is only in getting the cut's precision right, which, to be fair, is a challenge in any car, understeery or not. I took about 3 laps of penalties before getting the cut right on the 4th and last lap. Thankfully, these races were all run with tyre wear off, as I suspect even with 1x, the tyres will start to show noticeable degradation with the long sweeping lefts of Yamagiwa.
I found you, faker!
Faker? I think YOU'RE the fake Ryo around here! You're comparing yourself to me? Ha! You're not even good enough to-
I'll make you eat those words!
Race 4: WRX
Race 4 never happened. Certainly not at Suzuka (I was falling asleep at the wheel and drove god awfully I'm sorry I can't say much else).
Race 5: Evo:
Close your eyes little Timmy we're doing reverse grid starts in Bathurst and people are going to die very horrible deaths.
Very. Horrible. Deaths.
Rob's livery reads: Stay home. Stop the spread. Save lives. But I'm not entirely sure the virtual world of Bathurst bodes any better for my well being (it didn't. I died and dropped to last place).
I was the one who voted for Bathurst, actually, since it's my favourite track in the world. I wanted to see how well the AWD cars coped with the uneven road surfaces that defines Bathurst, as well as to see if the Evo even HAS a 6th forward gear. I'm happy to report that the Evo dances around Bathurst very gracefully with very little care in the world. Perhaps this is my front brake bias coming back to bite me, but the Evo understeers quite a fair bit under hard trail braking. Thankfully, one of the two hard braking zones in Bathurst has adverse camber, meaning all cars have to brake early and gently turn in, anyway (I'm referring to Turn 2, Griffin's Bend).
If you're gentle and intermittent with your braking input, I find that the Evo responds generally well. I was pleasantly surprised by how it streaked through Brock's Skyline, a fast, yet rapidly slowing downhill right left right left string of corners, with each being slower than the one that led into it. While MR cars are generally accepted to be the ideal track car layout, Bathurst is one of the very few that nixes that trend, being an MR killer, and Brock's Skyline is in particular a MR car's worst nightmare. The front engine, AWD Evo really shines here, however. More than just being fast, it was a hell of a lot of fun. It is much of the same story on the ferociously downhill braking into the tight Forrest's Elbow. In fact, the front tyres only seem to want to be pushed this hard into the ground to really work, in spite of already having an engine almost right over them normally.
Also, yes, I did manage to get a very good run out of Forrest's Elbow and had a double slipstream tow all the way into The Chase. Time to see if I can use 6th gear in the Evo!
Still couldn't hit 6th. I at this point, having never seen the settings screen of the Evo, still don't know if this thing even HAS a 6th. I know Gr. 4 cars closely resemble the production car, but come on must PD make the Gr. 4 Evo resemble the road car in gears as well, the one with the 5 speed manual?
I may have never driven the Evo Gr. 4 prior to these races, nor do I know much about them in general, but I'd be lying if I said I was coming here with no expectations and prejudices. I think the Evo X is one of the most disgusting road cars in Gran Turismo Sport. I cannot fathom how anyone can, in good conscience, sell a car in 2015, a SPORTS CAR, with a 5 speed. A 5 speed where 5th is overdrive and bogs. The suspension is wallowy and unwilling, and don't even get me started on the interior build quality. I have never seen a car with a more oxymoronic name than the Evo, because it has basically been left to sit stagnant ever since its inception in 2007, never evolving further. I know the Evo X is offered with a 6 speed DCT, but I also hear that the 5 speed manual is the stronger box of the two. And for a "Final Edition", they really just... didn't bother with anything more than badges and stitching. I can't freaking believe this company. Next thing you know they'll be calling SUVs "Eclipse" and "Evolution"... oh, wait.
Another small gripe I have against the Evo Gr. 4 is that, because it uses the stock 2L engine, yet is asked to produce GT4 levels of power, I was hoping that PD would achieve this power with an insanely big turbo, like the Gr. 3. If you've never heard the Gr. 3 Evo, I highly urge you to, because it has the most RIDICULOUS induction and blow off noises in the game, moreso even than the Gr. B cars. I was hoping for some of that anarchy and chaos in the Gr. 4 car, but alas, it doesn't have the same turbo noises. But, nope. It has the same generic turbo noises as any turbo Gr. 4 car in the game. And while the Gr. 3 Evo can claim to be the "King of Oval Racing", the Gr. 4 Evo is simply... a disappointment on every front. It has no real unique strengths, and the only thing it's good at doing, other AWD cars can do as well. It's not the worst AWD car in Gr. 4; not by a long shot. That title is in the iron grasp of the Atenza, as that has even worse tyre wear than either the Evo or WRX. But that doesn't make the Evo any good, either.
Also, with the exception of Citroën and Mitsubishi, every manufacturer in this game is represented by a car currently in production. Mitsubishi really has nothing to show for itself after axing the only mildly exciting car in their lineup, the 8 year old Evo, and then getting caught up with their own emission scandal.
Race 6: WRX
Final thoughts on the WRX? It's unremarkable. There are a few exterior oddities with it I find pretty amusing though. For one, the brake lights hardly light up.
Also, it has the single lowest poly wing I think I have ever seen in my entire life. That, and the leading edge almost seems to be sitting higher than the trailing edge of the wing, making it seem like it's generating lift rather than downforce.
I mean, seriously, in chase cam view, the decals on the wing blade is staring right at you!
Awkward way to end the post as I have nothing meaningful to say to close this out.
Agreed! As a huge Mitsu fan I like the Evo more than the STI, but the Evo X was a let down. The Evo 8/9 would be my pick. I test drove a 2017 STI and was thoroughly unimpressed, I even went on a forum to ask why it felt so slow. May have been the low mileage of the car i drove, who knows. Both are almost equal as far as speed.
We are about a month and a half away from 100 weeks of COTW. So I'm letting you guys know in advance what to expect for the 100 weeks. I'm just going to leave this trailer for you guys.
Very similar AWD driving dynamics between these two, with one main nuance; the WRX turns in better, but understeers sooner under power on corner exit, and the Evo has less initial turn in grip, but more grip under power on exit.
Despite the nuances, the times were 1:32:305 and 1:32:411 - find out which car edged out it's rival:
This week we are staying in the Gr4 category. We'll be testing the Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport. This weeks car is chosen by @XSquareStickIt
I was thinking about this car and used it for Free Practice before tonight's Nations race. I must have willed it.
Edit: Alright, since you all twisted my arm... Quick Free Practice review.
The engine & exhaust sounds are uninspiring. The gears need to be closer in ratio. Other than those "issues", it's a fun steer when driving in cockpit view.
Similar to the RSR, it's quick, but doesn't, virtually, feel fast.
For me, the Cayman is quick and agile, but BoP holds it back. And with a Fixed setting in Sport Mode races, it’s not going to dominate.
But in lobbies that allow tuning on BoP, the car is more capable.
Two rally icons, adapted for the circuit. Surely that's a recipe for success, right?
Let's start with the Subaru. I have a fond liking for the Gr.4 WRX. It netted me my first daily race podium, and was a strong choice for most Gr.4 races in the lower D/C ranks. Unfortunately its use died out as opponents got faster, but still it'll always be that special car to me. The one that started it all.
Off the line it's great, I blew past so many Evos in the race meet it wasn't funny, and it never wheelspins or bogs down thanks to the 4WD.
It grips, it handles, it launches, it's only downfall is that it just lacks a bit of that top end performance. It's a shade too slow, a shade too lazy in corners, a shade too hungry for tyres, if it had a bit more power or perhaps less weight, I reckon we'd see it on the pointy end of the grid more often.
And don't get me started on the noise. Glorious.
Now, the Evo. I have so many questions. Why can't the Evo follow the successful formula of it's rival? What airhead decided to fit it with a 5 speed box? Why can't it corner for the life of it?
The Evo takes all the bad traits of 4WD, and greatly exaggerates them. It understeers, it understeers, and it understeers some more for good measure. Couple that with the woeful speed thanks to literally coming up a gear short, and there's a reason people call it the "Memesubishi".
The WRX is a sleeper. The Evo a big fat beater.
The Cayman GT4 is hobbled by the class, just like other Gr.4 cars.
I would hazard a guess that the turning ability especially turn-out is about as best as you can get and possibly better than the 911. Typical Porsche minimal understeer amazing turn but when it stops turning, you'll know.
I dont find it that slow... I do tend to run max power lowest weight so I think it pings 300km/h. This car is a winner, even at my crappy hands it did a 7'18" on the ring race condtions, RH and a praiano tune I think...
This cars should make people upset than a plain N400 road Cayman GT4 isnt in the game.
This... especially to use it with a MT.
The Cayman GT4, of which there's two generations (I think?) is one of the cars that people sleep on. I get people dig the GT2/3s and 911 Turbo Cabs etc. but really... a Cayman with a mid mount 3.8 GT3 motor and mandatory 6 spd manual... its what professionals recommend!
Patron saint Mark Webber agrees.
Huge thanks to @Racer283 for allowing me the honour and privilege to choose this week's Car of the Week. I picked the Cayman as I just wanted to rave and praise this thing non stop, because I LOVE this thing. And given how Porsche is the hot new commodity in Gran Turismo Sport, and how the Cayman has been in the game since launch, I couldn't believe the good folks at COTW hadn't had a chance to really sink their teeth into it yet.
Happily, the timing of the Cayman being COTW is quite a good one, as last week we had just tested the WRX and Evo X in Gr. 4 guises, and the sole Cayman in this game, the GT4 Clubsport, is of the same category, and therefore competes directly with the Evo and WRX, and can be directly compared against. While at first glance, the mid engined, 2 door sports car Cayman is a very different car from the front engined, 4 door sport sedans that are the WRX and Evo, there are some very notable similarities between them, actually. The Cayman has a horizontally opposed engine like the WRX, and has gears taller than a mountain like the Evo!
Race 1: Tsukuba
I don't know if it's on purpose, but the first races of each week so far I've seen always seem to be at tracks that highlight the cars' worst flaws. In this week's case, we found ourselves at the tight, technical track near the Chiba prefecture in Japan: Tsukuba. See, I was going to slowly build up to it and praise the car properly before adding this caveat to make it seem like I'm a sane, rational person that can properly assess things, but I'm forced to say this right now and risk sounding like a fanboy later, or worse, that I don't like the Cayman: the Cayman's one flaw is its tall gearing. The tall gearing not only hurts this car in the acceleration department, where it's weakest compared to its Gr. 4 contemporaries, but it also leaves the car severely wanting in slow, tight, technical corners as well, of which Tsukuba is consisted almost entirely of. Engine braking is SUCH a powerful weapon in RWD cars, and while the Cayman has no issues decelerating, it runs out of engine braking in these slow corners where you're scraping the bottom of the rev range in 2nd. This means that the Cayman loses out on decelerating at these extremely low speeds, and more of the front tyres' grip have to be dedicated to slowing the car down instead of turning. 1st and 2nd in the Cayman are miles apart, and with the Racing Medium tyres we were running, there was no reason to ever dip into first, even at Tsukuba, meaning the car was just left to suffocate most corners.
While I've gained a lot of respect for Porsche and its engineers thanks to finally being able to sample their cars for myself in GT Sport, some of the decisions they make, I just cannot rationalise; the tall gearing of the Cayman being one of them. It's not just a problem that's exclusive to the one race car that's under the microscope this week; it's a common complaint among reviewers and owners alike. There are rumours of how Porsche "protects" the 911 from the Cayman by crippling the Cayman with tall gears. As much as I wouldn't like it if it could somehow be proven, there is no reason I can see for such familial politics on a racetrack. Granted, I don't know what the engineers of this car set it up for in real life, but I personally cannot see where that long gearing benefits the Cayman, and it severely grates on me every time I drive this brilliant machine. As previously mentioned, engine braking is such a powerful tool for RWD cars, and it's just instinct when I feel the car starting to suffocate to downshift, except the Cayman just isn't ready to downshift at most of the time I want to. The envelope between "I want to downshift" and "It's actually faster to downshift" is SO HUGE in the Cayman. As you might see in a video I'll embed later, I tend to want to downshift at about 100km/h in the car, yet first gear peaks at about 80. I think you'd need to dip to about 50 to make a convincing argument for dropping to first, as it revs so fast and runs out of breath so quickly. And in the otherwise euphoric moments the Cayman brings me when I drive it, I keep being perturbed by thoughts of, "I am going to blow this engine IRL". And it makes me... sad. It makes me angry. It makes me afraid to approach this car even if I were somehow given the chance to. And I get it. It's my own fault as a driver that I fail to adapt. But when the rest of the car is so perfect, so cohesive, this awful gearing has simply GOT to go. No ifs, no buts.
(See, this is why I really wanted to praise the car before laying in on the complaints, so it's better established how much I love the car and how much it means to me, to better illustrate why the gearing bothers me SO much.)
As can be expected from racing smaller, slow(er) cars in a One-Make race, especially around Tsukuba, the racing was hard and closely fought the whole 6 laps. While there are many instances of exchanging places and paint trading, I think this clean, brave, and SAVAGE move by @Vic Reign93 clearly takes the cake, with the cherry on top.
(Please click the gif to view on imgur if it doesn't autoplay)
I know we have Cars of the Weeks and Years, but if we ever do an OoTY, the Outfit Overtake of the Year, I nominate this move by Vic.
Race 2: Dragon Trail - Seaside
Help mommy the big bad men are making me race at DT Seaside with almost no practice and I haven't bought life insurance yet.
Dragon Trail is one of the standout fictional circuits of Gran Turismo Sport - beautiful scenery, technical track, good runoff, a few good overtaking spots... It's honestly a shame this track doesn't exist-
Of course it doesn't exist IRL. How could it? No one would drive on the Chicane of Death at racing speeds. This track might as well be known as, "the track that has the original CoD". The CoD has every element of an awful, dangerous corner in motorsport: Blind? Check. No runoff? Check. Taken at speed? Check. Bumpy? Check. Only one line through? You betcha.
If taken sensibly (i.e. slowly, sub-optimally), the CoD has about a 10% chance of still killing you, so I guess we got lucky and still were able to have a good, close fight for a bit at the rest of the track. At the sunset setting we were racing on, and with such beautiful cars, the photos just about shot themselves.
Admittedly, after the opening scuffle, I was right in the middle of two distinct packs, about five seconds away from each, so I was having a quiet second half of the race. Hopping about in the replay however, it was clear that the guys up front were having a LOT more fun than I am.
This 3 way scrap carried on for about the whole race, from start to finish. On the last lap, Vic even attempted to go side by side in the CoD!
(In Initial D spectator style): Upcoming is the Chicane of Death that has claimed countless victims. Even World Tour aliens aren't immune to screwing up here. Izzy just needs to hold out for one corner after to secure 2nd. Vic has to back out here. He has the sub optimal line. My gosh, he's really trying to get Izzy to back off and concede the position. Izzy's not budging. Vic has to back off now! My god don't do this! Please, don't do this! Think of your family! Think of your fans! Think of everybody!
No! That's too late! He's going in, saido bai saido daaa!
That may or may not have been my reaction when watching the replay
Izzy backed out, and conceded the position to Vic, who went on to successfully defend it at the last corner to take home 2nd. This guy was an overtaking machine that day.
Race 3: Suzuka
Rather than with photos, I'd like to, as an exception for this week, present the race to you in video format instead, because the racing was just so close and intense, there wasn't a single dull moment for me at Suzuka.
Race 4: Bathurst
Oh no close your eyes little Timmy we're doing reverse grid starts at Bathurst and people are going to...
...get through turn 1 somewhat cleanly?
Hey look, I actually got to use 6th with slipstream at Conrod Straight.
Okay, this is the last dig at the Evo, I swear.
I used to think that close, One-Make races like that were reserved for the Mazda Roadster. The fact that I had such closely fought, incredible, door to door races with so many people at any given point in time, over four races, makes me think that the Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport is just an oversized, more powerful, more expensive Roadster. It's fast enough to produce exciting racing, yet is never intimidating. It has good enough aero, but never enough to destroy racing with dirty air. There is a very real sense of trust and precision in the handling of the car, almost as if it were part of your own body. It never steps out or behaves in a way you wouldn't expect as a driver if you treat it with due respect, and is forgiving enough even if you get cheeky every once in awhile, which is what makes pushing it so fun. There is always communication. There is room for mistakes (see: Lap 2 Brock's Skyline in the above video). There is room for pushing. There is room for experimenting. There is room for forgiveness. As odd a comparison it may seem to be, this car is like a good, supportive, attentive, open minded therapist, giving you a safe environment to play and push your boundaries. You know how Initial D lauds the AE86 as being a car that trains the driver? I wholly believe the Cayman GT4 is the modern day, midship equivalent of that. If anyone needs a car to learn driving RWD, if anyone needs a car to learn the ins and outs of a MR car, there is literally nothing else that comes to my mind but the Cayman. It is a car that continually entertains, continually teaches, continually encourages you to learn at your own pace, and it's a car that never ever betrays the trust it builds in its driver.
The Cayman holds the title of "Handling Nirvana" in my head. This standard, this predictability, this tameness yet excitability, this balance, this responsiveness, this tactility, this agility, I believe is what every automaker should benchmark, strive to achieve, and challenge to better. I actually find it difficult to set a good lap time in the Cayman, not because of that holding back of that last 2 or 3% out of fear that is my excuse when driving a 911, but because I trust this thing completely, too much, in fact. I know I can slide this thing and recover it without spitting myself into that barrier. I know I can brake a little bit too late and still make it out unscathed. Hey, what if... I braked a little later for this corner, turned in a little earlier? What if I shifted the brake bias more towards the rear? Will it make me faster? Will it kill the tyres more? I can try that, because the Cayman has my back. The driving experience is so fun that I can't help but to clown around and experiment with it, and it's an experience that never, EVER gets old.
Most cars in GT Sport generally have a set brake bias to extract the fastest time from them, and thus brake bias is a "set it and forget it" affair for most cars around all tracks. The Cayman so far is the only car I've driven that I've not been able to simply "set and forget" a brake bias, because it gives drivers so many options, and they all have their own uses around each track. Tsukuba for example, I've wanted +2BB (rear bias), and the car never threatened to spin, or even went as far as hinted to me the rear was going to step out under braking; just controlled rotation into tight apexes. For Bathurst, however, the steep, heavy braking zones necessitated -3BB (front bias), and the car stopped better without excessive understeer, and still responded well to trail braking. It was never an abrupt, awkward change. The car maintains its composure, balance, and precision, while showing marked differences.
And the sound. THE SOUND. Even without the retrospect of the 718 downsizing to a turbo 4 pot, the 981 Cayman has an amazing soundtrack to sing. No, it's not as sexy sounding as a 458 or the LFA, but it sounds very distinct, being a flat 6, without being grating. I really appreciate sports cars that have odd, unique engines with their own odd, unique sounds, as it gives sports cars their own personality and character. Sports and supercars are, in essence, cartoon characters, aren't they? I highly respect any automaker who marches to the beat of their own drums, even if that means mounting the engine behind the rear axle most of the time for Porsche. The 3.8L Flat 6 engine not only has its own distinct sound, but it seems to have a special tune set aside for the last 200rpm that really begs and rewards you for revving the crap out of this racing engine. Being a NA engine, its power buildup is linear and never jarring, nor is it left to asphyxiate at low revs, making me think that this engine would be just as stellar on the street as it is on the racetrack.
Much of the same can be said for the styling of the car, actually. While it isn't as evocative as bona fide supercars like the 458, or as attention commanding as an Aventador, it still looks unmistakable, and distinctly special to even a non petrolhead, I would assume. It has an air of understatement and modesty about it, yet Porsche knows just the right spices and seasoning to pepper into the styling of the car to make it that much more special for you if need be, with side stripes, and the fixed rear wing that should just be standard on all models instead of the nonsensical tiny, hydraulic spoiler-wing things. It maintains an air of class and self assuredness, without ever looking tacky, and that language of styling is right up my alley.
This car is an absolute darling. These are proper sports car things that so many manufacturers seem to have forgotten nowadays. A sports car is more than just numbers on a spec sheet. Technology is always going to keep marching onwards regardless of how brilliant your product is by today's standards. A sports car should speak to you. A sports car is something you should be able to trust. A sports car should make you smile every time you push it. The Cayman does all this and more. It isn't an experience that will be dulled or made irrelevant by the march of time. It therefore becomes something more than the sum of its parts; it transcends the cold metal that make it up and its definition of being an unfeeling machine. This, THIS, is EXACTLY what makes people fall in love with sports cars, and these people are the reason why sports cars exist to begin with. And I find it shocking how lost an art form this has become. God bless Porsche. God bless the Cayman. I blow kisses to this thing every time I drive it. I want, I need this thing in my life, and I want to spend the rest of my life with it. Hell, once you have a taste of this drug, the question almost becomes, "what is life without this?"
I'm sorry, did I say the Cayman is "Handling Nirvana" earlier? Scratch that. It's just Driving Nirvana, pure, plain, and simple. I would hug and kiss this thing to sleep if I could. If the production Cayman GT4 even remotely resembles the Clubsport, I think I will finally lust after a car that isn't as old as I am.
Why tf is the production version of the car not in the game, though?
I really enjoy this car in the game so much and I even replicated its road car specs. I'm still waiting for its road version (and the 991.2 GT2 RS!)
It's just that, for me, it's not competitive in Gr. 4 Sport Mode races with BoP and fixed settings. It had to be fiddled with considering the BoP nerfs. If tweaked, it's a beast on the corners and good on tire wear.
Vic just doing Vic things, I see....
What a week for the COTW. Both races door-to-door, down to the last turn, two-wide through the chicane of death, I finished last twice races. Enjoy.
Livery by Christian O. on Trading Paints
Well, you really did it this time Car of the Week. You made me buy a Porsche with my own money. It was a virtual one mind you, but as a life-long Corvette fan it was a difficult task. It's the equivalent of a fan of the glorious and true University of Michigan having to buy a scarlet shirt adorned with the logo of THE Columbus Middle School For THE Athletically Gifted that takes literally THE most common word in THE English language and acts like it makes them better than everyone else.
However, it is also the only GT4 car currently available in my preferred simulator of iRacing. With the myriad of amazing GT4 cars that I've been able to watch in the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge (including Mustangs, Camaros, R8s, AMGs, Vantages, M4s, and 650S..es), seeing the Cayman as the lone representative of the Specification initially felt like going to a Golden Corral and finding out the only thing on the buffet is asparagus. While at least it's not a 911, meaning the engine is in a sensible location and the race version won't attempt to blow out the eardrums of innocent spectators; it doesn't make a particularly memorable noise and the styling is as forgettable as having plain saltine crackers for lunch.
However, I was going to give the car a fair shake, and for the track I had to select the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. While it may unfortunately be located in Ohio; it's an excellent and challenging technical course, and I would've been there this weekend to watch my second-ever IMSA event had YOU-KNOW-WHAT not intervened. Going from my usual Mercedes-Benz AMG GT3 to the Cayman, the reduced aero bits and lateral grip were obvious adjustments, but not near as much having the engine located behind me instead of in front. Indeed, the baseline setup proved disconcertingly loose; especially when attempting to navigate the Thunder Valley section as the elevations on corner apexes tended to send the car veering off in a random direction. A direction that usually ended at a tire barrier.
Though once I applied a borrowed setup for the course and made a couple of minor adjustments to improve the stability of the car, it steadily became more and more enjoyable to drive. Its compact size certainly fit Mid-Ohio very well, but I nonetheless found it much easier to drive than the AMG GT3. While the AMG would simply fly off the course when it lost traction, I found that I could reel the Cayman back in most of the time when it started to slide. Perhaps the best feature of the Cayman was that it would display with lights on the side of the instrument cluster when the anti-lock brakes or the traction/stability control were kicking in. As much grief as I give Porsche engineers, I have to admit this is really clever. It's like the car is giving subtle nudges in the right direction rather than just being overly intrusive like I found the Nissan GT-R Nismo to be in the past. Though, speaking of intrusiveness, I did find that the Cayman's ability to deny a downshift if it thinks the RPMs are too high were a negative rather than a positive. It's not a great feeling when you're trying to set up what's clearly a 2nd gear corner when the Porsche stops at 3rd gear and says, "Nah, Brah."
While it's usually not a good idea to race a car you have limited experienced with in iRacing, I had enough confidence with the Cayman to enter a virtual IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge race, also taking place at Mid-Ohio. While I was nowhere near the fast guys and had a couple of off-tracks as part of the growing pains of a new car; I did get to enjoy a whale of a battle in the closing laps of the race in a four-way contest for 11th place in Class, clicking off some of my personal best laps along the way. I likely would've gotten 12th had a lead-lap car (in Black) not shown up at the wrong time.
So my final conclusion? I went in with low expectations for the Cayman, and came away with a much more positive opinion than I thought I would. So, it's a Sleeper. Not only that, I could easily see myself stepping down from the huge challenge that is GT3 Racing and driving this car in GT4 competition instead. At least until the BMW M4 GT4 comes to iRacing, but even then the choice of cars isn't as automatic as I thought it would be between the two.
One thing is for sure. If I was given my choice of any Porsche that I could have free of charge and no strings attached; I would walk right past all the 911s, get behind the wheel of the Cayman, and never look back as I drove away.
As an aside, I did also buy another car on iRacing that has featured in COTW recently. But that's a story for another day. In the meantime, enjoy this display of my Oval Specialist skills.
Where's the new car lads?
I'm just waiting on Mustang to get back with me with the car as he chose one of the cars we did back in 2018. He gave me a list of cars he would choose which consisted of a majority of cars we've already tested but narrowed it down to 4 cars that we haven't tested yet. My guess we pry won't know until later this evening or closer to race night.
This week we are getting into the iconic Nissan Skylines. We are going to be testing the Nissan Skyline R32. This weeks car is chosen by Mustang.
This should have been an r32 vs r33 vs r34 comparison. Be that as it may the R32 is a winner. The 4wd system doesnt seem to have a huge negative impact on the handling in my hands.
The car is a winner on its home tracks of Bathurst and Nurburgring, It could do with another gear though.
In N400/500 form its a bit ahead of the usual crowd.
GTS Nordschleife hot lap STOCK Nissan Skyline R32 '94 07.58.669
Great car. Pretty fast and you can really throw it around corners, feels like a RWD in some moments. Love it's looks and sound too.
Also, very late review for the DS3:
GTS Nordschleife hot lap STOCK Citroen DS3 '11: 08.26.505
Surprisingly quick French hatch-back. Its looks aren't horrendous by any means, but it's also not exactly the looker.
While the R32 and R33 are pretty identical speed-wise, they both stand no real chance against the R34, when maxed out (the R34 is ~5 seconds quicker around the ring).
Calling it as I see it...
In the past several weeks, I have mentioned in the race chat that people really need to dial back the aggression... now I'm doing it here. The examples of blatant off track driving and out and out ramming of cars that I'm trying to showcase here in this video, are NOT what CarOfTheWeek racing is about. Never has been, never will be.
Now before any comments start, here it is for ya, in English... I DON'T GIVE A FLYING about the excuses, or the reasons behind it. Clean it up!!! Or if I'm hosting, it will be done for you!!!
Get it? Got it? Good!!!
I have noticed that already months ago. To be fair: My driving style can be a little on the harsher side from time to time and I can sometimes also breach the track limits.
It's not you that is causing problems it's more specifically one person that is causing more trouble than what its worth. I've notice after any races you do apologize if you bump someone but it has to do more with intentionally taking someone out of the race.
Trust you me, so have I... here at COTW, we are not an oppressive regime, and prefer to lead by example. Everyone has their off days, and no one is perfect.
But, after mentioning it more than a few times, it's time to reel things in. I've left it alone for long enough, in the hopes things would improve. Now, it's time to clean things up.
I'm hoping that people will agree and strive for the good, clean, close and ridiculously fun racing we have enjoyed for years.
@Nismonath5 and I have been messaging about this today and he is currently writing up something that will address this and make it so everyone is on the same page and know that we are a fun and clean racing group.