2014 Porsche Cayman S
Base price: $52,600 -$63,800
As tested: $79,775
MPG: 21 mpg city/30 mpg highway
- Looks amazing
- Superb performance
- Burmester® audio system
- Options are expensive
By Jim Prueter
The Cayman — Porsche’s two-seat, mid-engine coupe that’s based on the Boxster’s architecture — has been redesigned inside and out. It has more power under the hood, a refined interior, and a stiffer, yet lighter, chassis that results in a superbly balanced machine.
It’s as if the previous generation Cayman has spent the past six months with Tony Horton’s P90X workout program: building muscle, stretching the wheelbase, increasing torsional rigidity, and adding more powertrain soundscaping. The end result is nothing short of amazing, not only from behind the wheel but visually as well.
A Total Transformation
The Cayman’s exterior transformation includes sharper fender lines, an aggressive grille, side-duct openings, and of course, its signature fastback rear glass and deck. The active rear-wing spoiler has been integrated into the rear deck — and doubles as silver trim traversing the car’s width, bisecting the LED taillights.
The drastically improved interior is kitted with leather-wrapped surfaces, including comfortable and supportive sport seats. Optional features include the Burmester® audio system, the best-sounding factory installed system I’ve ever heard, and the light design package, which comprises dimmable LEDs throughout the cabin.
The Cayman comes in two models, both of which featuring flat-6 engines: the 2.7-liter, 275-horsepower Cayman and the higher-performance variant, 3.4-liter, 325-horsepower Cayman S (tested here).
The Cayman S, mated with an automated 7-speed, automated double-clutch PDK gearbox, goes from zero to 60 mph in just 4.4 seconds, has a top speed of 175 mph, and achieves 30 mpg on the highway. That’s just four-tenths of a second off the 911’s zero-to-60 time (with a $20,000 lower price tag).
You can’t help but be impressed by just how much fun it is to run this car through its paces. It’s easy to push hard — just punch the sport mode and hit it — with its perfect handling reflexes, immediate steering response, and instant acceleration.
We can’t heap enough praise on how well the Cayman S drives and performs. If I had $75,000 burning a hole in my pocket, this car just might give me pause.
JIM PRUETER, an automotive writer based in Phoenix, has provided reviews and advice about cars for more than 20 years.