The Porsche 911 is no stranger to special-edition models, but while most models get added performance or track tuning, the 2012 Porsche 911 GT3 RS 4.0 is sending off the current 997 body style with the biggest engine ever to be used in a 911. The larger displacement flat six should give the GT3 RS 4.0, just don't ever expect to see one on the track since Porsche is only planning to build 600 units globally with models bound for the United States carrying a starting price of $185,000.
Porsche's 911 GT3 RS is already a proven track car, but the limited-edition 4.0 kicks things up a notch with improved horsepower and aerodynamics. The engine is definitely the biggest advantage of the GT3 RS 4.0 with the number designation signifying the engine's displacement. Developed from Porsche's racing program, the 4.0-liter flat-six engine produces 500 horsepower and 339 lb-ft of torque - increases of 50 hp and 22 lb-ft. This power increase is a result of the variable intake manifold and VarioCam engine controller that help make this the most powerful non-turbocharged 911 ever.
Even more impressive than the fact that it's naturally aspirated, this engine uses racecar-grade components such as forged pistons, titanium connecting rods and a crankshaft milled for the 911 GT3 RSR racecar. The only transmission available on the GT3 RS 4.0 is the six-speed manual.
With a top speed of 193 miles per hour and the ability to accelerate from zero to 60 mph in just 3.8 seconds, the performance of the 911 GT3 RS 4.0 doesn't necessarily stand out, but the car is designed for the track. Porsche backs this up with a claim that this car lapped the famous NÃ¼rburgring in just seven minutes and 27 seconds. This improved track time is a result of the higher horsepower along with the reduced curb weight and fine-tuned aerodynamics. With a full tank of gas, the GT3 RS 4.0 weight just 2,998 pounds (down 22 pounds compared to the GT3 RS) thanks to weight-reducing components such as the carbon fiber seats and various carbon fiber body panels.
All 2012 Porsche 911 GT3 RS 4.0 models will come in Carrera White with unique body graphics to finish off the car's unique track look. The large rear wing and center-mounted exhaust are signature 911 GT3 RS cues, but aside from the paint and graphics, the only visual changes made to this limited-production model are the 'flics'? on the front fascia which help add 426 pounds of downforce when the car is at its top speed. Of the 600 units being produced, about one third are expected to make it to the U.S.
In total, the new Porsche 911 is available in 21 different configurations ranging from the 911 Carrera starting at $79,000 up to the 911 GT2 RS starting at $245,000.