£44,644 - £54,423 Price range
34 - 38 MPG
The Porsche Cayman is a car you buy because you can’t quite stomach the price of a 911 – it has 80 percent of the 911’s driving experience for around half the price. It’s almost as quick and just as usable.
Even the entry-level 2.0-litre model has 300hp and can get you from 0-62mph in just 5.1 seconds. The faster S model gets a 2.5-litre engine with 350hp, enough to get you from 0-62mph in just 4.6 seconds and onto a top speed of 177mph. In the entry-level Cayman you can expect to get fuel economy of up to 38mpg, which drops to just under 35mpg in the S.
But it’s the way the Cayman handles in corners that really stands out. It’s combination of an engine located just behind your head and rear-wheel drive gives it huge levels of grip. Couple this with confidence-inspiring steering and brilliant brakes and you have a car that’ll put a huge smile on your face.
Other sports cars – the Lotus Exige, for example – can do that too, but they can’t match the Cayman’s ease of use every day. With the optional £1,010 adjustable dampers fitted, the Cayman soaks up bumps surprisingly well – even with huge 20-inch alloy wheels fitted – and the £2,000 PDK automatic gearbox is worth buying if you often drive in slow city traffic.
Thanks to the Cayman’s front and rear boots, you don’t even need to compromise too much on practicality. The Cayman has a total luggage capacity of 405 litres – more than a VW Golf – although the boots’ shapes restricts you to carrying soft bags rather than suitcases. You only get two seats, of course, but the driver’s seat and steering wheel have a wide range of adjustment so you shouldn’t have any difficulty getting comfortable.
Interior quality is top notch and you can choose from all manner of leather upholstery and trim pieces. That said, even a light dabble in the options list can have the cost of your Cayman soaring. Fortunately, sat-nav is standard. It works via a seven-inch screen and comes with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, so you can mirror your smartphone’s media and navigation apps to the car’s built-in screen.
In fact, from the inside the Cayman could be mistaken for a sporty executive saloon rather than a track-ready racer, and that’s exactly what makes it a great car. It’s easy to drive on a variety of roads and perfectly at home on the daily commute, but take it to a track day and your friends will need something pretty quick to keep up.