Video: Tuned GT3s Battle Huracan Performante at the Nurburgring

It’s long been unofficially held that the Porsche GT3 RS is the ultimate track-biased road car. Unlike most of its performance-car contemporaries, the Porsche is civil and easy to use—and is as precise and responsive as any road car worth its salt. However, there’s a new contender for that title, and it’s also made by the Volkswagen Group.

The new Lamborghini Huracan Performante brings some of that track-scalpel precision into the fold, and, like the Porsche, it works decently as an everyday driver. They’re both a little on the shouty side, but unlike most cars with that much aero, the obvious focus, and look-at-me paint job—a trip to the grocery store in either won’t require a subsequent trip to the chiropractor.

With ten years spanning these three machines, it’s bound to be an interesting battle.

991 GT3 RS

For some, the standard performance plan proffered by the Porsche isn’t enough. In the case of the 991 GT3 RS camera car, it’s been fitted with KW 3-way Competition coilovers, a Manthey aerokit, and Pirelli Trofeo R tires to make it even better suited to the track.

It’s almost an understatement to call it the most competent package, but it is: capable at high and low speeds, surprisingly composed over bumps, braking in a league of its own, and that renowned 911 traction deploying each of the 500 horsepower over the uneven surface of the ‘Ring. With PDK stringing those ponies together, the car has the corner-exit acceleration to run with some cars comfortably more powerful.

Building a 997 to match a 991: Kaege’s car might have the best possible package.

997 GT3 RS

Its greener, older brother isn’t as obnoxiously fast, but with a custom Keage engine, this bright green 997 GT3 RS is very comfortable in this exclusive party. The custom 4.3-liter motor, fitted with M&M’s carbon airbox and exhaust, makes an astonishing 512 horsepower, which is harnessed with a Sachs clutch kit. At each corner, custom KW coilovers and 19-inch BBS wheels firm the footwork and give the car an unmistakably athletic stance. Part of this sprinter’s workout program also includes odd tweaks, like a lighter battery, that amount to roughly one-hundred pounds in weight savings.

Inside, a 991-series wheel and a CAE-style shifter improves ergonomics and shift times; the driver having to hardly move their right hand from the wheel to engage a gearchange. In a straight line, the two are shockingly close. Yet, as this clip demonstrates, modern aerodynamics separate this Porsche from its younger brother and the Lamborghini.

Lamborghini Huracan Performante

The obvious straightline demon is the Huracan Performante, which, with a 5.2-liter V10 making 630 horsepower, can always close the gap on the Nordschleife’s straighter sections. The snarling bull is more than just something to park in front of the club, too; the Performante generates loads of downforce, and thanks to intelligent aerodynamic vectoring (ALA), minimizes drag on the straights much like a DRS system—it’s a real driver’s car, and it’s able to hit 6:52 at the ‘Ring.

Yet, the car with the greatest stability at speed is the 991 GT3 RS; its composure after Ex-Muhle (4:37) helps the GT3 RS extend a lead over the Lambo, which should walk the Porsche at this point. What’s more, it isn’t limited by all-wheel-drive, unlike the Lamborghini.

Therefore, when the corners tighten after the Karussel (5:55), the agile, rear wheel-steered Porsche makes a break for it and leaves Lamborghini trailing in its wake. Admittedly, the Porsche is tuned and the driver no slouch, and maybe a faster circuit would favor the Lamborghini, but it still has to leave some people in disbelief with the way it seems to bring the best out of the driver on such a challenging course. No question about it—the 991 GT3 RS is still the King of the ‘Ring, despite what official lap times might suggest.

About the author

Tommy Parry

Tommy Parry has been racing and writing about racing cars for the past seven years. As an automotive enthusiast from a young age, he worked jobs revolving around cars throughout high school, and tried his hand on the race track on his 20th birthday. After winning his first outdoor kart race, Tommy began working as an apprentice mechanic to amateur racers in the Bay Area to sharpen his mechanical understanding. He has worked as a track day instructor and automotive writer since 2012, and continues to race karts, formula cars, sedans, and rally cars in the San Francisco region.
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