Flogging the new Cayman S up and down the twisty, hilly roads of Spain’s Andalusia region is like opening a much-desired gift on Christmas after having “discovered” it a few weeks earlier in the spouse’s secret hiding place: The surprise is gone, but it is replaced by the anticipation of finally getting one’s hands on something badly wanted. The Cayman – whether the base version or the higher-performing S – was already a blast to drive; the ’09 models are just that much better.
Design-wise, changes to what Porsche calls the second-generation Cayman are subtle – primarily new front and rear fascias with larger headlights plus integrated direction indicators and new LED rear lights. The daytime running lights are where the fog lamps used to be. Inside, the centre console is new, and there are fewer controls cluttering up the area. The air conditioning controls are improved, as are the audio, communication and navigation systems.
Under the rear hood, however, are brand new engines similar to the units in the new 911. The base Cayman sees the boxer six’s displacement increase to 2.9 litres from 2.7, with a 20-horsepower up-tick to 265. The 3.4L engine in the S benefits from Direct Fuel Injection, resulting in a 25-hp bump to 320.
That these engines are more fuel efficient – by 11 per cent in the base model and by 16 per cent in the S when hooked up to PDK – than last year’s versions with Tiptronic is a bonus.