That huge wing [insert Boeing joke here] gives this away as the new 2015 Porsche 911 racer, designed to slot between the Carrera Cup starter car and the full-fat 911 RSR.
Porsche hopes to tempt privateers and race teams wanting to step up from the single-driver Carrera Cup series with this car, offering a taste of the mega downforce and stickier tyres of the RSR. Porsche hasn’t offered an intermediate racer since the 997’s GT3.
Caught testing at the Nurburgring in recent weeks, this new GT3 car comes as Porsche readies a mid-life facelift for the roadgoing 911 family – the second-generation 991, dubbed 991.2 by insiders.
While the new-generation road cars will adopt an all-turbo engine line-up, it is believed, the 991 GT3 racer will stick with a naturally aspirated flat six tuned to develop north of 400bhp.
Porsche 991 GT3 racer: the spy photos
These new spy photos from the ‘Ring reveal a heavily camouflaged 911 prototype at full chat around the Nordschleife.
And while we often criticise car makers for being fixated on the Nurburgring to develop road cars, as this is a race car we think we can forgive this bit of ‘Ring tuning, don’t you?
The fully caged 911 sports all the latest aero accoutrements you’d expect on a full-blown sports car racer: the bodywork is peppered with cooling ducts to feed air to various radiators to keep oil, water and brake discs at manageable temperatures.
The door mirrors are low-drag items while the front splitter and rear diffuser are so close to the tarmac, the Nurburgring will surely be scraped a few millimetres lower after a few hot laps at the hands of Porsche’s development drivers.
When will we see the new 911 GT3 race car?
Judging by these latest spy photos, development of the new GT3 race car is at a reasonably advanced stage. We’d predict a debut in the next few months, so the car is ready to compete in the 2015 GT calendar from the spring.
The FIA-approved World Endurance Championship, where RSRs compete, kicks off in Silverstone in April 2015 before moving to Le Mans for the 24 hours on 13 June.