Porsche’s Boxster-based coupe – first launched in 2006 - the Cayman and Cayman S, has undergone a nip and tuck for 2009. Beauty is however, not only skin deep for this mid-engine Porsche with an integral metal roof. Yes! You guessed right…like the recently facelifted 911(997), the Cayman range will also get new boxer engines, that fantastic twin-clutch PDK gearbox and higher performance suspension tweaks.
As with the 911 facelift exercise, both Cayman variants will have Porsche's Doppelkupplungetriebe (PDK) 7-speed automated-manual ‘box which can shift gears quicker with uninterrupted torque delivery. Other added benefit include a lower fuel consumption and lower emissions too. In PDK form, this Porsche ‘entry-level’ sports coupe will zip from zero to 100 km/h in 6 secs flat i.e. 0.1 seconds faster than the 5-speed manual older Cayman.
More interestingly, the 2009 Cayman S with PDK (using Launch Control) will be capable of century sprint figures of sub-5 sec now (4.9 sec to be exact) whereas the predecessor with a manual 6-speed shifter ‘only’ managed 5.9 sec. The previous Tiptronic S fitted Cayman S does it in 6.1 sec. Improved suspension geometry and damper settings have enhanced the 2009 Cayman/Cayman S’ handling and agility, while maintaining comfortable levels of ride pliancy. Expect Porsche Communication Management (PCM) as standard whereby the interface of the infotainment-navigation system is by way of a touch-screen LCD, not some cumbersome blob of rotary-knob-and-cursor-buttons variety. Impressively, Jaguar is the other premium auto maker utilising such smarter, simpler, more intuitive and hence safer-to-use touch-screen LCD interface. Lexus is the other luxury automotive brand employing similar solution to their in-car navi-infotainment system, in their GS and LS models.
The refreshed Cayman models are slated to go on sale by Q1 2009 in Europe. For Wheels reckon it will be Q4 2009, or even Q1 2010, for right-hand drive models to make it to Malaysian shores. Expect PDK to be standard equipment for all local Cayman models, with a likely 15% - 20% price premiums over the pre-facelift Caymans.
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