Porsche Motorsports developed the car from the ground up for the 2017 racing season
In the minds of Porsche enthusiasts, this is groundbreaking. This is not an evolutionary move but a revolutionary move on the part of the German car manufacturer.
The 911 has always been a rear engine car, with the majority of the engine mass behind the rear axle. With this new RSR, Porsche has reengineered the car, moving their signature flat six-cylinder engine towards the front of the car, in front of the rear axle.
Porsche’s Head of Motorsports, Dr. Frank-Steffen Walliser, said “While retaining the typical 911 design, this is the biggest evolution in the history of our top GT model.” And that’s putting it lightly.
And a ground up redesign means just that: suspension, body structure, aerodynamics, engine and transmission are all new. In addition, with the change in engine placement, Porsche designers were able to install a larger rear diffuser. With the top-mounted rear wing from Porsche’s LMP1 race car, the 919 Hybrid, the RSR’s downforce and aerodynamics have been improve significantly.
For the 2017 season, two factory 911 RSR’s will be busy. Porsche will compete in 19 outings, including the FIA World Endurance Championship which includes the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The team will also take part in the North American IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, where it will debut in Daytona in January.
“We’re very well prepared for this,” says Marco Ujhasi, Head of GT Works Sport. “Since its first rollout in Weissach in March this year, we’ve covered more than 21,000 test miles (35,000 kilometers) on racetracks in Europe and North America – that’s more than in the development of any other previous Porsche GT racer.”
That’s some serious testing. My guess is Porsche is in it to win with their most advanced GT car to date.
Although not all Porsche 911’s are quite as tuned for racing as the RSR, all are among the best sports cars money can buy. Porsche’s precision and performance demands high quality OEM parts for the Porsche 911, more so than any other model.