With great power comes great responsibility, as Spiderman’s uncle once said to him. In terms of the horsepower wars it would appear that Porsche has ended their participation for the near future.
These days you can get a BMW M5 with 560bhp from the factory, this current model has increased it’s power some 48% across 5 model changes across 30 years no less (1985 M5 produced 286bhp Euro/SA model only).
Car magazine interviewed Andreas Preuninger, the head of Porsche’s GT division dropping strong hints that the new generation of Porsches will leave the horsepower wars behind them.
When Preuninger was questioned about the new 911 GT3 RS, and its potential future versions, he stated: ‘I’m not a believer in this horsepower monster, up, up, up, more, more, more. For my personal tastes, around 500bhp is enough, because 700-800bhp calls for bigger brakes, sturdier suspension, it gets heavier and heavier logically.’
In addition to this Preuninger then suggests that the GT and RS models would prioritise weight-saving over increasing horsepower numbers: ‘I think it’s not my engineering target to get 50bhp more every generation, I’d rather turn it around and make the car lighter again, a specific horsepower per kilo. I think that makes more sense.’
When questioned on if future models could see a decline in power numbers. Preuninger stated that ‘you wouldn’t turn back.’ But equally, it won’t see a big jump in power purely for power’s sake.
‘If I were a customer and the next RS had 20bhp less, I would say, “hey, come on, what’s that?”’ he says. ‘But we have to be more concentrated on the overall package, not just horsepower. This is not a dragster, it’s a track car.
‘There are plenty of dragsters on the market, big V8, twin turbo – boom, off you go. But [they] don’t turn.’
Also if you have a working left leg and can therefore actually drive a manual gearshift because your of sound body & mind Preuninger has equally good news: ‘This endless discussion about PDK and manual, there’s no wrong, no right. Just differences in mission criteria. In the future, we don’t want to discuss what is better, we just want to offer both, so everybody should make up his mind and choose.’
‘We put a manual in the Cayman GT4 for good reason, to show the people we listened. For people to blip the throttle, it’s satisfying. Why not give the people something to play with if they’re longing for that?’
Is the end of the horsepower wars from German heavy weights, your guess is as good as mine on that one but I highly doubt we have seen the end of it.