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gen Porsche 718 Cayman shows less can be more

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3rd-gen Porsche 718 Cayman shows less can be more

By Jeff Yip

Published 2:50 pm, Friday, March 24, 2017

This 718's cabin is graphite/chalk leather and "Sport-Tex," a combination that's available for the first time in a Cayman. The option runs $2,520. Photo: Porsche

The 718 Cayman's Porsche logotype is now chrome against a black accent strip that integrates with the spoiler.  The central positioning of the exhaust is retained. Photo: Jeff Yip

The 718 Cayman S has 350 horsepower vs. the 300 of the regular Cayman and larger 19-inch wheels and tires are standard. The optional active suspension can drop the sports car 20mm, or about three-fourths of an inch. Photo: Porsche

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Photo: Jeff Yip

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Porsche's design DNA is instantly spotted in the 2017 718, but its lines are sharper. Only three exterior pieces carry over from the previous Cayman.

Porsche's design DNA is instantly spotted in the 2017 718, but its lines are sharper. Only three exterior pieces carry over from the previous Cayman.

Photo: Jeff Yip

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This 718's cabin is graphite/chalk leather and "Sport-Tex," a combination that's available for the first time in a Cayman. The option runs $2,520.

This 718's cabin is graphite/chalk leather and "Sport-Tex," a combination that's available for the first time in a Cayman. The option runs $2,520.

Photo: Porsche

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The 718 Cayman's Porsche logotype is now chrome against a black accent strip that integrates with the spoiler. The central positioning of the exhaust is retained.

The 718 Cayman's Porsche logotype is now chrome against a black accent strip that integrates with the spoiler. The central positioning of the exhaust is retained.

Photo: Jeff Yip

Image 4 of 5

The 718 Cayman S has 350 horsepower vs. the 300 of the regular Cayman and larger 19-inch wheels and tires are standard. The optional active suspension can drop the sports car 20mm, or about three-fourths of an inch. less

The 718 Cayman S has 350 horsepower vs. the 300 of the regular Cayman and larger 19-inch wheels and tires are standard. The optional active suspension can drop the sports car 20mm, or about three-fourths of an ... more

Photo: Porsche

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3rd-gen Porsche 718 Cayman shows less can be more

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Been thinking of taking the Porsche plunge? If so, you should know it's a watershed year for Porsche's entry-level mid-engine sports car, the Cayman.

The Cayman has undergone an overhaul so extensive - more powerful engines, new body, cabin, and sportier suspension - that it goes by a whole new designation for 2017: 718 Cayman. Porsche said the only parts carried over from the previous model are the windshield, roof and luggage compartment lid.

The 718's sharper body sculpting is gorgeous. Inspired by storied Porsche racecars like the 550 Spyder and the 718 GTR, the third-generation Cayman looks wider, lower and nimble. The 718 coupe is eye candy from any angle but it's especially tasty in profile. The front and rear fascias have been redone and there's a new design for the standard Bi-Xenon headlights and integrated LED daytime running lights. The prominent intakes in the rear fenders just behind the doors feed cooler, denser air to the engine and help transfer heat from the turbocharging system's air-to-water intercooler.

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