Motorsport these days is a massive minefield. Just about every major championship is facing some kind of identity or financial crisis, from Formula E’s recent manufacturer exodus to the ongoing concerns around money in Formula 1 and Supercars. But, near unabated, the world of Porsche Carrera Cup racing keeps ticking along.
Porsche has whipped the covers off its new 992-generation 2021 Carrera Cup racer, destined to compete in single-make series all over the world. On the surface it doesn’t look too radically different from the current model. But, there are a few visual queues — new bonnet vent formation, more aggressive flared arches, and ‘gooseneck’ rear wing included.
As you’d expect, the most comprehensive changes are under the metal. The same screaming 4.0-litre six is tucked under the rear bonnet, but now it produces 510hp (375kW); 25hp more than the old model. Exhaust configuration is the same, meaning fans can expect a familiar shrill bellow at the track.
The engine tweaks pale in comparison to the racer’s two biggest changes, though. The first of these is a new platform. Instead of being based on a standard 911 base, the new 992 Cup shares its platform with the wider 911 Turbo. This means a widened track (28mm front and rear to be exact), which in turns means the ability to put wider rubber on each corner.
The other biggy is what can drive the 992 Cup. While championships are by and large expected to run the series with standard racing fuel, the new Cup car can also be propelled along by Porsche’s synthetic fuel. This technology is something Porsche has been chipping away at in the background as an alternative to traditional combustion fuels. The German firm claims the fuel works just as well as the normal stuff, with no drop in output.
Inside, the 992 adopts a lot of learnings from its GT3 R cousin. These include a new dash layout, a large colour display, illuminated controls, and a tiny steering wheel formed out of carbon-fibre reinforced plastic.
Sadly, New Zealanders who like what they see won’t be able to see the new Cup car in the flesh for a wee while. While the Payce Porsche Carrera Cup Australia series will be at next year’s ITM Auckland SuperSprint Supercars event (circuit still to be announced), they’ll still be utilising the 2020-spec car.
“We were particularly successful in achieving this thanks to its striking appearance, the improved suspension, and intelligent solutions for electrical details,” said project manager Jan Feldmann. “With its improved performance and the optimized cockpit, it’s the best Cup car that Porsche has ever built.”