WhatCarAwards banner - desktop
sponsored

In association with MotorEasy

Car of the Year Awards 2023: Sports Car of the Year

More than anything, sports cars need to thrill you. Acceleration is important, but it’s finesse and feel through corners that matter most...

WINNER: Sports Car of the Year

Porsche 718 Cayman GTS

Car of the Year 2023 main logo

It was Albert Einstein who once said: “There’s nothing known as perfect.” While we’re not going to argue with a genius, we’re pretty sure he’d have agreed that the Porsche 718 Cayman GTS comes pretty close to sports car perfection. In fact, it speaks volumes that it has now claimed our Sports Car of the Year award for three years in a row.

How has it held onto the throne for so long? Well, where its rivals are specialists in one or two areas, the Cayman manages to be a master of all things, especially in GTS guise. This version discards the usual – and somewhat disappointing – 2.0-litre turbocharged flat-four engine for a glorious 4.0-litre six-cylinder one that’s naturally aspirated and produces 395bhp.

Sports Car of the Year 2023 - Porsche 718 Cayman GTS rear

This powerhouse pulls effortlessly from low revs; pin your foot and you’ll fly from 0-62mph in just 4.5sec (4.0sec if you go for the optional PDK automatic gearbox) while bathing you in a wondrous noise. That latter point means using every single bit of the rev range is a pleasure.

The GTS’s standard six-speed manual ’box is up there with the very best, giving you a satisfying shift each and every time you change gear. So, although the PDK swaps between cogs swiftly, we’d stick with the manual for the additional engagement that it adds to the driving experience.

There’s more to being the king of sports cars than just straight-line performance, and the Cayman impresses just as much, if not more, when you approach a corner. It’ll outperform almost anything else through the twisties, including the Jaguar F-Type, Porsche 911 (its bigger, pricier brother) and Toyota GR Supra.

Sports Car of the Year 2023 - Porsche 718 Cayman GTS dashboard

The steering is beautifully precise and well weighted, so you can effortlessly place the car exactly where you want it, filling you with confidence. And the Cayman demonstrates sublime control, with virtually no body lean – unlike the F-Type. The Cayman also remains settled over mid-corner bumps and serves up vast portions of grip.

And yet, despite all of its sports car focus, the Cayman can still serve as a comfortable daily driver, thanks to PASM adaptive suspension that soaks up all but the worst lumps and bumps that UK roads can dish out. Meanwhile, its interior is beautifully built from top-quality materials and the driving position is spot on. Professor Einstein, your new car is waiting.

For all the latest reviews, advice and new car deals, sign up to the What Car? newsletter here

See all of our Car of the Year 2023 winners >>