New for 2017

Like its Boxster sibling, the Cayman gains a new “718” designation, along with numerous upgrades to the powertrain, styling, and interior.

Racecar DNA

Following a thorough reworking of its Boxster sibling, the Porsche Cayman coupe gets a major upgrade for the 2017 model year. Like the Boxster, it adopts the “718” designation that references one of Porsche’s most legendary racecars. Like the Boxster and Cayman, the original 718 was a small, mid-engined machine, and it took the fight to much more powerful cars on racing circuits around the world. Today, the 2017 Porsche 718 Cayman carries on the spirit with impressive performance capabilities of its own.

Performance

Like the Boxster, the 718 Cayman gains a new lineup of turbocharged four-cylinder engines, bringing it closer to its namesake 718 racer while also improving fuel efficiency.

Engines and power outputs mirror those of the drop-top Boxster. That means the base 718 Boxster gets a 2.0-liter turbocharged flat four, with 300 horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque, while the 718 Cayman S gets a 2.5-liter flat four with a variable-geometry turbo, which produces 350 hp and 309 lb-ft.

The four-cylinder engines are smaller in displacement than the naturally-aspirated flat sixes in the old Cayman, but that doesn’t mean they give up any performance. With the PDK and optional Sport Chrono Package (the fastest configuration available), the 718 Cayman will do 0 to 60 mph in 4.5 seconds and reach a top speed of 170 mph, while The 718 Cayman S will do 0 to 60 mph in 4.0 seconds and reach a top speed of 177 mph. 

EPA fuel-economy figures rate the 2017 Porsche 718 Cayman at 24 mpg combined (21 city/28 highway with the manual transmission, and 25 mpg combined (22 city/30 highway) with the PDK.* The 718 Cayman S is rated at 22 mpg combined (20 city/26 highway) with the manual, and 24 mpg combined ( 21 city/28 highway) with the PDK.*

To live out to the reputations of both the previous Cayman and the 718 (which raced at high-profile events like Le Mans and the Targa Florio in the 1950s and ‘60s), Porsche also upgraded the 718 Cayman’s chassis. The suspension boasts firmer springs and sway cars and retuned shocks, while the electric power steering system is now 10 percent quicker in terms of on-center response, according to Porsche.

The optional Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM) lowers ride height by 10 millimeters, while a PASM Sport version drops height by 20 mm. With the Sport Chrono package, suspension settings can be adjusted using a mode switch on the steering wheel.

Features

The 2017 Porsche 718 Cayman is a two-door, two-seat, high-performance coupe in the aforementioned 718 Cayman and 718 Cayman S trim levels, priced starting at $52,600 and $64,100 respectively.**

The 718 Cayman offers a generous array of standard equipment, including include 18-inch alloy wheels, Porsche Communication Management infotainment system, Bluetooth® , Bi-Xenon headlights with LED daytime running lights, 4.6-inch TFT instrument-cluster display, sport seats, leather trim for the steering wheel, shifter, and door trim.

Optional equipment includes voice-controlled navigation, the Sport Chrono Package, PASM active suspension system, Porsche Dynamic Lighting System, dual-zone automatic climate control, heated and ventilated seats, leather seat trim, Bose®  and Burmester®  premium sound systems, and many options for customizing interior and exterior trim. 

Design

To go with its new name and numerous mechanical upgrades, Porsche gave the 718 Cayman new styling as well. The mid-engined coupe is still recognizably a Porsche, but it’s sleeker and more muscular than before.

The minimalist styling is cleaner than ever, with bodywork stretched tautly over the chassis. Air intakes at the front and behind the doors on both sides are larger than before, giving the 718 Cayman a more aggressive look. LED headlights with Porsche’s new four-point LED daytime running light signature are also available. At the back, there are new taillights linked by a black trim strip, meant to make the back end appear wider.

As before, the interior has a simple yet upscale design. The steering wheel is adapted from Porsche’s now-discontinued 918 Spyder supercar, the seats offer plenty of bolstering, and the gauges are easy to ready. For 2017, the Cayman gets more connectivity options, including available Apple CarPlay™, voice-controlled navigation with Google Earth and Street View, and Wi-Fi.

Safety

Safety equipment on the 718 Cayman is similar to that of the 718 Boxster. The 718 Cayman comes with antilock brakes, stability and traction control, front and rear parking sensors, a rearview camera and airbags for the head, thorax, and knees. The Porsche Car Connect option adds emergency telephone assistance that is paired with the user's smartphone.

Verdict

The 2017 Porsche 718 Cayman is sharper, sleeker, and more efficient than ever. It’s ready to defend Porsche’s position as one of the preeminent sports car makers.

Be sure to contact us online or visit Porsche Silver Spring at 3141 Automobile Blvd, Silver Spring, MD 20904 to schedule a test drive.

*EPA estimate; your mileage may vary.

**Prices listed are Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price for the vehicle and options chosen by you. These prices do not include transportation, taxes, title, other options, dealer installation costs, or other dealer charges.

Image Credit: Porsche