From 2004 through 2006, Porsche produced the Porsche Carrera GT, which was a two-door roadster sports car. The development of the Porsche Carrera GT stretched back into the 1990s and through several other planned and cancelled designs. Initially, Porsche wanted to create a race car that was specifically designed to run in the Le Mans 24-hour race. Limited finances shelved this plan, but part of the design was used to create the Porsche Carrera GT. Finally, Porsche produced a concept car for the 2000 Geneva Motor Show. A large amount of interest, plus income generated by the Porshe Cayenne SUV, positively influenced the Porsche executives, and they decided to produce a road legal version of the concept car.
More on the Porsche Carrera GT
Porsche Carrera GT Origins
Even though Porsche decided to create the new roadster, they planned to only produce a small number of the sports cars from its plant in Leipzig, Germany. Production of the first Porsche Carrera GTs started at the beginning of 2004, with the first ones available for sale in January 2004 for the 2004 model year. Porsche planned a production run that would end after 1500 cars were built, but in late summer of 2005, they announced plans for discontinuing the line. No further Porsche Carrera GT roadsters were created, and the ones that had been were sold into 2006 until sold out. In total, fewer than 1300 sports cars were produced with about half of them sold in the U.S.About the Porsche Carrera
The Porsche Carrera GT was designed to produce a track-worthy vehicle that was also legal to drive on the road. It was a supercar that was built to provide the highest speed and acceleration possible, with high-performance handling. When it was released, it was the top of its class with an ultra-light weight and a high tech design. This included several Porsche innovations such as the engine placement and materials used to create the sports car. By creating a supercar, the Porsche Carrera GT was part of a very small group of sports cars.
When the Porsche Carrera GT went into production, it was the first time that Porsche built a supercar with a limited production run since the early 1980s. The Porsche Carrera GT was powered by a 5.7-liter V-10 engine that produced 605 horsepower and 435 lb-ft of torque with a top speed of 205 mph. According to Porsche, the Porsche Carrera GT can go from zero to 60 mph in just over three seconds. Although the V-10 engine is a large engine, the one used for the Porsche Carrera GT was designed for the Le Mans sports car. As a result, the lightest of materials were used to develop the engine.
The only transmission available was a six-speed manual transmission, but Porsche created a brand new clutch made from ceramic material. As well as being more responsive than any other clutch produced by Porsche, it was about ten times lighter than any other clutch. Porsche also created ceramic composite brakes, which are unique just to Porsche, that were significantly lighter than conventional braking systems and that much more responsive.Porsche Carrera GT Features
To provide the best weight distribution for the car, the engine is placed just behind the two seats of the cockpit, giving the car a rear mid-engine, rear-wheel layout. The engine also sits very low within the chassis of the sports car, which means the car has a much lower profile and is that much more aerodynamic overall. Placing the engine lower in the chassis also lowers the center of gravity of the Porsche Carrera GT so that handling is significantly improved, including cornering at high speeds.
Throughout the design of the Porsche Carrera GT, lightweight materials were used to keep the weight of the supercar as low as possible. It is built from carbon fiber reinforced plastic instead of metal. Although this material is very strong and lightweight, it takes a lot longer to produce, which meant that only two Porsche Carrera GT cars could be produced per day. The wheels used on the Carrera GT were made of forged magnesium instead of aluminum alloy to further reduce the weight of the car.
Although Porsche was basically building a road-legal race car, they didn’t sacrifice safety. The Porsche Carrera GT is fitted with front and side airbags, traction control, an anti-lock braking system, and a tire pressure monitoring system for all four wheels. The headlights are equipped with xenon light bulbs, and the windshield, rear window, and side windows were designed to provide the highest amount of visibility from all angles. Finally, both the driver’s seat and passenger’s seat are steel surrounded.
The Porsche Carrera GT came in only five colors, although custom colors could be ordered. The interior was minimally fitted out to keep with the race car design. Luxury features include leather interior, automatic windows, and power heated mirrors. A navigation system and Bose audio system could be included as optional extras.