Like the Boxster, the 2017 Porsche 718 Cayman borrows the “718” designation from a classic racing model of the same name, and gets a thorough reworking inside and out. It may not look very different on the outside, but the 718 Cayman is almost entirely new under the skin.
The refresh includes the same turbocharged flat-four cylinder engines as the 718 Boxster, replacing the previous six-cylinder engines. Output is the same as in the Boxster, meaning the 2.0-liter engine in the base 718 Cayman produces 300 horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque, while the 2.5-liter Cayman S engine is rated at 350 hp and 309 lb-ft. Power is sent to the rear wheels through a six-speed manual transmission, or six-speed PDK dual-clutch automatic.
As with most Porsches, achieving the highest performance requires ordering both the PDK transmission and the optional Sport Chrono package. In this configuration, the 718 Cayman base model will do 0 to 60 mph in 4.5 seconds, and reach a top speed of 170 mph. The 718 Cayman S will do 0 to 60 mph 4.0 seconds, and top out at 177 mph.
There’s plenty of tech to help the 718 Cayman go around corners as well. Available Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM) provides on-the-go adjustability and lowers the ride height by 10 millimeters. There’s also a “Sport” version available on the 718 Cayman S that lowers ride height by 20mm and provides more aggressive settings. The Sport Chrono package includes “Normal,” “Sport,” and “Sport Plus” driving modes, and an “Individual” mode that lets the driver customize settings.
It may not look very different, but Porsche says the Cayman’s exterior has been thoroughly updated. The biggest apparent changes are the new four-point LED daytime running lights that are becoming a Porsche styling hallmark, and redesigned taillights connected by a black trim piece. The front fascia also features larger air intakes and other tweaks.
The interior gets some styling changes as well, and a the standard Porsche Communication Management infotainment system. Apple CarPlay is available, but only as part of the optional Connect module. Other options include voice-controlled navigation, Google Earth and Street View, and onboard Wi-Fi.
The 2017 Porsche 718 Cayman goes on sale in the U.S. in November. Pricing starts at $54,950 for the base 718 Cayman, and $67,350 for the 718 Cayman S (both prices include destination).