Unofficially, the Porsche Carrera GT is a racecar; however this is a racecar that was built for the street. It isn’t so much because it produces monstrous amounts of power from its V-10 engine – though it does – or that its carbon fiber construction keeps everything very light weight. It’s more the sum of its parts that make this car worth every bit of its $440,000 price tag.
Power and Performance: Derived from Porsche’s 24 hours of LeMans efforts, the 5.7-liter, double overhead cam V10 engine generates 605 horsepower and 435 lb.-ft. of torque, transferred to the rear wheels through a six-speed manual transmission. The whole shebang sits just behind the driver in a mid-ship configuration, deep in the belly of the car. Similar to those used in exotic prototype racing machines, the engine is equipped with a dry sump oil system so there is no oil pan like on traditional street cars. Cool features abound, such as the rear wing that spans across the rear deck from fender to fender, automatically rising into optimum position as the GT reaches 75 mph. As with every other element of this Porsche, nothing is done without a purpose. The rear wing increases downforce by 30 percent.
Why it matters: The Porsche Carrera GT could arguably be called Everyman’s Dream car, along with the fading Ford GT. It has that mystic cache of power, sex appeal and exclusivity, without looking like a cartoon car or planting the driver into an unappealing stereotype. You can imagine that every car collector of any real significance has a Porsche Carrera GT in his or her garage, and you can imagine that of all the cars that sit in that well-lit and clean garage, the Carrera GT is the one that gets to go out on the track most frequently.