As a testament to the value of incremental changes, the second generation of the 991 GT3 has blitzed its predecessor’s ‘Ring time by nearly thirteen seconds! That’s not in comparison to the 997-generation GT3—no. That’s faster than a PDK-equipped, rear-wheel steered 991 GT3 which snagged a 7:25 lap a few years back.
A road-going car which can manage a 7:25 lap around the Nordscheife is something to behold, really, but to shave such a huge margin without making any massive changes to the car is remarkable, and speaks to how well-sorted the 991 generation is. As of now, the second generation of the once-divisive car might be best known for its optional six-speed manual ‘box, but it’s really a number of well-integrated, subdermal, subtle steps that define this car.
The newer, 4.0-liter motor offers an additional 25 horsepower and a much broader powerband, the rear-wheel steering and transmission software have been improved, and the aerodynamics have been reworked slightly to produce more grip overall. It’s probable that the aerodynamics play the biggest role in this bump in performance, since the car looks absolutely planted wherever Lars Kern steers it.
Kern, one of Porsche’s test drivers who snagged a somewhat unbelievable 7:38.4 lap time in a Panamera Turbo S, is the man responsible for this demonstration of motoring mastery. To chop time where he can, he really attacks the Karussell—which is enabled by the grip of the car and his willingness to abuse the car. It is a Porsche test mule, after all. He’s probably in touch with a good chiropractor, too.