Andreas Preuninger, head of Porsche's GT road car department, told us a few months ago that his team was no longer obsessing over Nurburgring lap times. Apparently, that's not entirely true: the new 911 GT3 just managed to lap the 'Ring an astonishing 12.3 seconds faster than its predecessor, putting down a 7:12.7 lap. That makes it one of the fastest cars to ever lap the famous German track.
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This represents a huge improvement for a car that weighs approximately the same as its predecessor, and only makes 25 more horsepower. Credit, then, goes to the significant aero tweaks Porsche made between the old GT3 and the current model.
The 911 GT3 that set this Nurburgring lap was equipped with the standard PDK transmission (a three-pedal manual is optional), rear-axle steering, optional carbon ceramic brakes, and Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires. The blistering time was set by Lars Kern, a Porsche test driver.
While the GT3 is blisteringly quick, it's not the fastest Porsche to lap the 'Ring—that honor goes to the 887-hp 918 Spyder, which famously ran a 6:57 to hold the production car world record until recently.
But the new lap time earns the GT3 a spot on our list of the ten quickest production cars to lap the 'Ring. The Porsche may pale in comparison to the Lamborghini Huracan Performante and its world-record 6:52 lap time, but the Porsche is, after all, 140 horses shy of the Lamborghini's 640 ponies.
Watch as Kern shaves more than 12 seconds off the previous GT3 record.