MSRP
$56,900
U.S. News Best Price Program

2019 Porsche Cayman Performance Review

Scorecard

Performance: 9.5

The 2019 Porsche 718 Cayman is a thrill to drive, as it's not only incredibly responsive, but comfortable as well. Its manual and automatic gearboxes are refined and quick and can be paired with one of three available turbocharged engines. Fuel economy is above average for the class.

  • "The 718 Cayman, and its muscular stablemates, the 718 Cayman S and Cayman GTS, employ a choice of powerful horizontally opposed turbocharged engines, near-perfect front-to-rear balance and an impressive suspension setup that makes the 718 Cayman as comfortable on a track as it is on the open road." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "The 718 Cayman is one of the best cars to drive, period. With its midengine, rear-wheel-drive layout and the added rigidity of its hardtop body, few cars (if any) can match its balance, athleticism, poise and engagement. Plus, impressively quick steering only enhances the 718 Cayman's razor-sharp reflexes." -- Autotrader (2018)
  • "The 718 Cayman S is a fun, responsive and engaging sports car. Amazing handling and braking, both in terms of performance and nuance. Plenty quick, too, though the PDK version is probably quicker." -- Edmunds (2018)

Acceleration and Power

Porsche offers three turbocharged four-cylinder engines for the 718 Cayman. The base engine is no slouch, but many driving enthusiasts will prefer the brisker takeoffs and throatier exhaust notes associated with the two larger optional engines. All three engines can be paired with a polished six-speed manual transmission or an optional seven-speed automatic that delivers quick, well-timed shifts.

The base engine is a 300-horsepower 2.0-liter four-cylinder. With an EPA-estimated 22 mpg in the city and 29 mpg on the highway, it gets better gas mileage than the average luxury sports car. Under the hood of the Cayman S is a 350-horsepower 2.5-liter four-cylinder. Fuel economy drops slightly to 21 mpg city/28 mpg highway. Engine displacement remains the same in the Cayman GTS, but horsepower increases to 365. The GTS earns an EPA-estimated 20 mpg city/26 mpg highway.

  • "The Cayman employs a 2.0-liter engine generating an impressive 300 horsepower with 280 lb-ft of torque coming on at a low 1,950 rpm." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "The base 2.0-liter engine offers impressive power, but its responsiveness and sound leave a bit to be desired. Opting for the 2.5-liter is quite pricey, but it's ultimately a more thrilling and suitable choice. We would also recommend sticking with the manual transmission -- yes, the optional PDK produces quicker shifts and is one of the best automatics produced, but the manual is easy to drive and adds back a layer of engagement that's been stripped away by the turbo engines' deeper well of low-end power." -- Autotrader (2017)
  • "We drove both the basic Cayman and the S at the launch event in Sweden where we confirmed … that the 2.0-liter's relative lack of urge when compared with the 2.5 is obvious only at the sort of commitment levels that risked getting us arrested and deported. As in the S, the smaller engine's abiding characteristic is its torque. … The result is the sort of effortless, any-gear progress of a big-cube powerplant." -- Car and Driver (2017)

Handling and Braking

The Cayman is one of the best rear-wheel-drive sports cars on the market. It is agile and responsive on curvy roads, yet comfortable enough to drive every day. A few add-ons can dial up performance considerably. These include torque vectoring, an active suspension system, and the Sport Chrono package, which includes additional drive modes, launch control, and a lap timer.

  • "When it comes to cornering, the mid-engine 718 Cayman, Cayman S and Cayman GTS are three of the world's greatest performers. Quick and agile, the 718 Cayman demonstrates remarkable stability and balance, responding without hesitation to even the slightest driver input regardless if it's during a feverish twisting uphill run, or a simple lane change on a freeway." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "World-class handling among sports cars. The Cayman S is incredibly balanced and stable when driven hard. Even over moderate midcorner bumps, handling is unaffected. Without stability control, the rear end will step out a bit, but it's very controllable and enjoyable." -- Edmunds (2018)
  • "Ride quality is incredibly compliant in easy driving, even on harsh highway expansion joints and is firm when you need it to be, especially with the optional active suspension management." -- New York Daily News (2017)
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2019 Porsche Cayman

MSRP: $56,900 - $80,700

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