2018 Porsche 911 GT3
2018 Porsche 911 GT3 pricingin Ashburn, VA
Which 911 does Edmunds recommend?
Edmunds' Expert Review
Overall rating4.5 / 5
Few cars match the 911's poise in so many areas. The 911 range is at once fast yet tremendously composed, rewarding and civilized. Likewise, there are few cars that are offered in such an onslaught of variants — for 2018, there are 20 distinct 911s. Porsche's strategy of methodically rolling out a new variant nearly every six months (or so it seems) has been so successful that it has been adopted in varying degrees by many other automakers.
The 911 shares its front-end architecture with the lesser 718 Boxster/Cayman models, which reduces cost — the bones from the firewall forward are largely shared. Aft of the firewall, the 911 is like no other car. Its 2+2 seating arrangement and engine hung outside of the rear axle are unique in the motoring world.
While in the past the 911's rear engine layout has been at the root of some wayward handling characteristics, there is no denying the braking and acceleration benefits that it imparts. And the modern 911 has thoroughly exorcised its more notorious habits. In the process the 911 has morphed into more of a GT car, something that is larger and more comfortable for long journeys than 911s of yore. Yet there is no denying it is an accomplished driver's car with few equals.
Trim levels & features
The 2018 Porsche 911 is available in a breathtaking number of trim levels and body styles. At its most basic level, there's the standard rear-wheel-drive Carrera coupe or the open-top Cabriolet. Each of those models is available with all-wheel drive, which is designated as the Carrera 4 or Carrera 4 Cabriolet. There's also a Targa model with a retractable hardtop that is only available with all-wheel drive. All of the aforementioned models are also available in a higher-performance S version. There's also an even higher-performance Carrera GTS that is available on all three body styles. The most powerful rear-wheel-drive model is the track-ready GT3. Finally, there's the all-wheel-drive 911 Turbo. It, too, is available as a coupe or convertible in either standard tune or more powerful S tune. If that's not enough, the Porsche Exclusive program provides for further customization.
Carrera models are rear-wheel-drive coupes and are equipped with a 3.0-liter twin-turbo flat-six engine (370 hp, 331 lb-ft). A seven-speed manual gearbox is standard; the PDK dual-clutch automatic is optional. Don't be fooled by its "base" billing — the Carrera is one hell of a satisfying car that is often overlooked.
Carrera 4 models (and others with the numeral 4 in their names) add all-wheel drive and 1.7-inch-wider rear fenders.
All S models (aside from the Turbo S) have a twin-turbo 3.0-liter flat-six engine with more power (420 hp, 368 lb-ft), larger brakes, a limited-slip differential and 20-inch wheels. Optional features on S models that are unavailable on the base versions include a sport suspension, active stabilizer bars and rear-wheel steering system.
Cabriolet models are equipped an electrically operated folding soft top, while Targa variants have an electrically stowable hard roof panel.
GTS variants are essentially S models with more standard equipment, a power increase (450 hp, 405 lb-ft), the wider rear fenders of 4 models on all GTS variants, and unique interior and exterior trim. These models are deceptively desirable.
Turbo models are mega-powerful cars with an immense range of talents. They have a 3.8-liter twin-turbo flat-six engine (540 hp, 486 lb-ft) and rear fenders that are 2.8 inches wider than the base 911's, and are equipped exclusively with a PDK gearbox and all-wheel drive. Turbo S models have more power (580 hp, 516 lb-ft), center-lock wheels, active stabilizer bars, carbon-ceramic brakes, 18-way adaptive sport seats with backrests in leather, a two-tone leather interior and adaptive LED headlights as standard equipment.
GT3 models are the most focused of all 911s and are favored heavily by the trackday contingent of owners. They are exclusively rear-wheel-drive coupes that have a nonturbocharged 4.0-liter flat-six engine (500 hp, 339 lb-ft) and a choice of seven-speed PDK or a unique six-speed manual gearbox. A fixed rear wing and unique front end and underbody treatments enhance its aerodynamic performance. Rear-wheel steering, active engine mounts, a mechanical limited-slip (PDK-equipped GT3s have an active differential), unique seats, navigation and a track analysis app are standard.
Each vehicle typically comes in multiple versions that are fundamentally similar. The ratings in this review are based on our Full Test of the 2017 Porsche 911 Carrera S (turbo 3.0L flat-6 | 7-speed dual-clutch automatic | RWD).
NOTE: Since this test was conducted, the current 911 has received only minor revisions. Our findings remain broadly applicable to this year's 911.
Noise & vibration3
Ease of use3.5
Getting in/getting out3.5
Child safety seat accommodation4
Audio & navigation4
2018 Porsche 911 video
[MUSIC PLAYING] CARLOS LAGO: That's a 2019 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1. ALISTAIR WEAVER: And that's the 2018 Porsche 911 GT3. CARLOS LAGO: Now, those three digit alphanumeric codes mean a lot. In the Corvettes case, ZR1 means it's the highest performing and most powerful version of the Corvette you can get, with 755 horsepower, and an optional track package that gives it a big rear wing, and sticky race track oriented tires. ALISTAIR WEAVER: Which makes it a perfect match for the GT3, named after sports car racing class. It was developed by Porsche's track motor sport division. And it's built on the same production line as the 911 race cars. Oh, and it revs to 9,000. CARLOS LAGO: You may be thinking, why didn't we go with the GT2RS. And while it's more of a performance equal to the ZR1 when it comes to horsepower, it costs nearly $300,000, or more than double the price of that car right there. ALISTAIR WEAVER: On your shopping list, the GT3 and the ZR1 are the real rivals. In many ways, it's a classic battle. It's a American bang for buck versus European culture and sophistication. CARLOS LAGO: What we're interested in is how these two super sports cars handle for your typical enthusiast on the road and at a racetrack. ALISTAIR WEAVER: So we are going to put them through the full Edmund's instrumented test. Then we're going to do a few laps. CARLOS LAGO: But before we do that, be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel and visit edmunds.com for all your car shopping needs. [MUSIC PLAYING] One of the Corvettes primary strengths has always been the value. Not only does this particular ZR1 cost $30,000 less than that GT3, it has more. More tire, more power, more torque, even a bigger rear wing. There's actually one more gear and it's optional automatic transmission. But the real highlight of this car when you see it for the first time is the fact that its supercharged V8 engine is so big, they had to cut a hole in the hood so it can fit. Fantastic. ALISTAIR WEAVER: Allow me to be big geekish for a moment. This generation of the 911 is code named 991. And this is actually Porsche's second attempt to the GT3 version of this car. The first one was fitted with a 3.8 liter engine, which to be honest, proved a bit troublesome. But this new one has a 4 liter that's been comprehensively redesigned. It's of course, larger than before, but hey, at least it still fits. This is basically a race car engine. So there's no supercharger. No turbocharger. Just a purity of purpose and instantaneous throttle response. Some of the detailing on this car is just fabulous. I love this carbon fiber engine cover. And just check out this little hinge for lowering the hood. Unlike the Corvette, you don't have to pay extra for a giant rear wing, which has now been redesigned to offer more downforce. You do, though, have to shell out an extra $9,000 for some carbon ceramic brakes, which is standard on the ZR1. And these fabulous carbon bucket seats, they're an extra $5,000 grand. Porsche hasn't lost its taste for over priced options. [MUSIC PLAYING] CARLOS LAGO: Despite the 255 horsepower difference between these two cars, they both reached a quarter mile an 11.2 seconds. With all that power, the ZR1 has a harder time leading the line, taking 3.3 seconds to reach 60. And that's including a one foot rollout. The GT3's launch control manages the grip more effectively, getting the car to 60 in 3.1 seconds. Both cars have large carbon ceramic brakes and sticky Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires, delivering short consistent stopping distances. ALISTAIR WEAVER: The 911's rear weight buyer should mean better braking, but not in this pairing. It took the GT3 103 feet to stop from 60 miles an hour. A still excellent result, but the ZR1 did it in just 95 feet. Extraordinary. CARLOS LAGO: Much like the acceleration results, our 200 foot skid pad presents another role reversal. While the GT3 averaged 1.18g, a normally incredible result, the ZR1 put down a staggering 1.24g average. That's a result unheard of in a street car. ALISTAIR WEAVER: Having crunched the numbers, we headed to the streets of Willow Circuit in Southern California for some high speed lappery. CARLOS LAGO: We thought about hiring a pro racing driver and bolting them into these cars and seeing how fast they could go when it comes to lap times, but then realized, what do you actually learn by doing? ALISTAIR WEAVER: If you want to find out, frankly Google it. Both of us have been testing cars a long time. Me slightly longer than him. We spent a lot of time on racetracks in different cars. So this is about what these cars mean to you. If you're going to buy the GT3 or the ZR1, will it feel to you on a track day? CARLOS LAGO: Let's find out. ALISTAIR WEAVER: Let's find out. [MUSIC PLAYING] Do you know how bad a passenger I am? CARLOS LAGO: About to find out, I bet. ALISTAIR WEAVER: Geez. CARLOS LAGO: So Corvette ZR1 approaching 109 miles an hour. We'll slowdown. ALISTAIR WEAVER: Look at the tires. CARLOS LAGO: What we really got to talk about what this thing is the overall experience in the engine. This is such a dominating factor of this car. Big is 6.2 liter V8. 755 horsepower. And my god, just listen to that. Spectacular, isn't it? ALISTAIR WEAVER: It is spectacular. Well, I guarantee this, if you take a passenger who has never been in a fast car, this car will terrify them. CARLOS LAGO: Might terrify the driver too. ALISTAIR WEAVER: Yeah, it will. CARLOS LAGO: This is a car, frankly, that starts as a $50,000, $60,000 dollar, you know, GT sort of sports car. And to see it be at this level of performance is astounding. So this is the optional bucket seat. ALISTAIR WEAVER: No. CARLOS LAGO: Yes. ALISTAIR WEAVER: That's not even a bucket. CARLOS LAGO: It's a very wide mouth bucket. And I find that, yeah, it's more comfortable on the road than the GT3. But on the track, I'm bracing against the driver door with my knee. ALISTAIR WEAVER: If you like, my biggest single problem with this car is the driving position. I'm just not comfortable. I'm moving around too much. And in something that's this fast that r requires this much concentration, if you're not properly located in the car, then you can't drive it properly. The physicality of the car, it feels heavy. You can't see the corner. You peer out of these little tiny slot of a windscreen. CARLOS LAGO: This is almost like an advanced level driving experience because the steering requires so much effort, because you have so much mass. You can sense it all around you. This isn't that much heavier than the GT3, but it feels like it. ALISTAIR WEAVER: And in this car, you kind of feel like the electronics are constantly doing battle with the physics, whereas in the 911, you'll live up to that. You actually feel the electronics here are an aid. They're guiding you through the process. CARLOS LAGO: And there are a lot of electronics in this car. We have a very adaptive, very advanced stability control system. We've got electronic dip. We've got a sensor that's looking at the tire temperature as well as the pressure. There's a lot happening underneath here. A little bit more cognisant of it in this car than you are on the GT3. ALISTAIR WEAVER: You've also just gotta be aware how fast this thing is. You are arrive at corners 20 miles an hour faster than you think. When I jumped into it live on corner one, you got a massive dose of oversteer just because the tires were cold. And you've got 755 horsepower. 80 miles and hour. Nice staying under it. Oh. Well, Alistair Weaver's last will and testament. CARLOS LAGO: That's a riot, isn't it though? ALISTAIR WEAVER: Oh, yes. Bury everybody. It's great. I don't wish to patronize you, but this car could not be more American. CARLOS LAGO: God bless America. We have to talk about the transmission. This has the 8 speed automatic, a 7 speed manual standard. I believe that's the better transmission. This 8 speed, while it works great when you're in the track setting, when you're leaving it to its performance shift function when you're driving as fast as you can, the logic is great. As soon as you fall outside of that sort of dewy cycle, the manual shifts aren't that great. They're a little bit of a delay. I would much rather have the manual. I think overall, I really enjoy driving this car a lot. But it requires a lot more from its driver to reach its capabilities. ALISTAIR WEAVER: And that's not necessarily a bad thing. Super cars should be super. It should be a challenge. One thing that I just think is extraordinary in this car, probably the car's best feature, are the brakes. They're just fabulous. CARLOS LAGO: Absolutely. You know, you think that the Porsche would have the braking advantage. It's lighter. It's got the rear weight bias. But this thing stops so quickly and with so much confidence. ALISTAIR WEAVER: Should we drive the Porsche? [MUSIC PLAYING] Yeah, it's all right. Yeah, it's all right. Cold tires. CARLOS LAGO: 9000 RPM is a beautiful thing, isn't it? ALISTAIR WEAVER: It is a beautiful thing. And immediately, you just realize how agile this thing is. Doing a little bit of push when its tires are cold. CARLOS LAGO: With its natural aspirated engine, it's so responsive as soon as you dig into the gas pedal. ALISTAIR WEAVER: I think as we all go toward turbocharged engines, that's something that we're going to have to get used to. That wonderful throttle response and that undiluted sound, which we have with this 911, is going to go away. And even Porsche isn't sure how long they can hang onto this. CARLOS LAGO: This is such a different experience than the Corvette. It's about the same size when it comes to length. The Corvette's wider and lower in height. This is about 400 pounds lighter than the Corvette. But the steering feels even more so than that. ALISTAIR WEAVER: You really feel like you can just get into this. And it gives you an instant confidence. Whether you have the systems turned on or off, you can really start to feel what it's going to do. CARLOS LAGO: This is a very approachable car. And you're right. That's ridiculous to say about a 911 GT3, traditionally the raciest car in the Porsche line up. ALISTAIR WEAVER: But not in a way that means it's boring. This is still a track biased 911 and it still demands a bit of respect. CARLOS LAGO: My first two laps in this car were faster, it felt like, than the Corvette. There are specific parts on this track that hit the scarier hairier parts of this truck always five mile an hour faster, immediately. When you know what you're doing behind the wheel, you're still going to feel rewarded in this car. If you're a novice you're still going to feel good in this car. ALISTAIR WEAVER: Yeah. CARLOS LAGO: And that's quite a feat to accomplish. That's something the Corvette definitely doesn't do. ALISTAIR WEAVER: The Corvette very much feels like a normal road car that's been turned up to the max and they've tried all sorts of engineering trickery to make it do things that maybe just deep down it doesn't want to do, whereas this car is the evolution of 50 years of Germanic engineering. I think the steering is one of the best things about this car. In the Corvette it really wakes up in the corners. Here it feels very consistent and that gives you a much better sense of what the front end's doing and what the rear end's doing. CARLOS LAGO: I've got to say, I'm 5' 10", about 180. And this is probably the most uncomfortable bucket seat I've been in. ALISTAIR WEAVER: And I'm 6' 4". Probably a similar weight. CARLOS LAGO: Yeah. This might be the German spec seat. A little bit taller. A little bit skinnier. ALISTAIR WEAVER: I think you need to spend less time in the gym and eat a bit more. CARLOS LAGO: How do you feel about this transmission? ALISTAIR WEAVER: Well, this of course, is Porsche's PDK system, which is kind of like a manual transmission with somebody changing gear for you, is probably the easiest way to say. Whereas the Corvette has a more traditional automatic. So this is a lot sharper. A lot faster. And I think in manual alone, a lot more intuitive. In the Corvette you kind of have to think your way into the gear changes. Here, you just flick a paddle and away it goes. CARLOS LAGO: I agree. When they're both left to their own devices on the racetrack, the shift logic between them is fantastic. But when you want that manual control, the Corvette has a bit of a delay that requires more effort. And that's not so great. ALISTAIR WEAVER: Both these cars have carbon ceramic breaks, but of course in the Porsche, they're $9,000 more. But if you're seriously going to track it, I think it's going to be something that you have to have. CARLOS LAGO: I admire the fact that the Corvette just throws it in with the car because that's what the car does. ALISTAIR WEAVER: Yeah. But they are good in this car. CARLOS LAGO: For sure. ALISTAIR WEAVER: Brakes are-- I would say, maybe on the test track, no, it didn't stop quite as quickly, but out here they feel just as good as the Chevy's. Absolutely. CARLOS LAGO: Absolutely. We've gone over a lot of the performance hardware that these cars give you, but we haven't talked a lot about the software. Both of these cars have software on-board that is intended to help you be a better driver. In the Corvette's case, you have the performance data recorder, which is an on board video data logger system. And this, you have a phone app that you can put on the windshield. It records your video, logs your position, and tells you how fast you were relative to other laps. It's pretty cool tech. ALISTAIR WEAVER: The other thing I like about this car in terms of how you drive it is, like a lot of 911s on the circuit, you just take it in a little bit on the brakes. It just helps to get the nose in, counter that initial push, and then because of all that traction and where the weight sits, you can get hard on the power and it will just pull its way out without in these modern 911's going into any sort of lurid over-steer. But if you want to make this car over-steer, then actually, you really have to induce it by getting into a corner, lifting off, and then getting hard back on the power. And then it will do-- CARLOS LAGO: Beautiful things. ALISTAIR WEAVER: --anything that you want it to do. [MUSIC PLAYING] CARLOS LAGO: Beyond lapping and testing these cars, we've also lived with them for the past week. And what's been truly impressive is how easy they are to drive everyday. ALISTAIR WEAVER: If you detune the ZR1, it pretty much feels like every other Corvette. And although GT3 is noisier than a standard 911, it's by no means uncomfortable. Of course, both these cars are really practical. CARLOS LAGO: I just recommend skipping the bucket seats, unless you look like him. ALISTAIR WEAVER: Another top tip actually. If you're buying the 911, pay the extra $2000 for the nose lift kit, otherwise you'll be scraping your chin every day and that's not cool. CARLOS LAGO: Let's get to it. The Corvette ZR1 is a lot of fun to drive. It has tons of character and a lot of performance, but you have to be really on your game to access it. ALISTAIR WEAVER: In many ways, it's a kind of super car of the old school. It's worth remembering this too, the next generation Corvette will be mid-engine and a very different proposition. So if you want a bruiser like the ZR1, buy it now. CARLOS LAGO: The 911 GT3 three has a similar thrill, but it's easier to access at the racetrack. ALISTAIR WEAVER: And consider this, although it costs $25,000 to $30,000 more to buy new, the residual values on a GT3 are so much stronger than a ZR1, that over a three or five year life cycle, it might actually be the better financial choice. CARLOS LAGO: The Corvette ZR1 has the bragging rights. It's got the top speed. It's got the power. And it's going to be a really fun car for a small group of people. ALISTAIR WEAVER: But in terms of answering the question that we originally posed, which is the best car for fast road use that's also great fun on the track? Then for us, the only choice is the GT3. CARLOS LAGO: Agreed. ALISTAIR WEAVER: For more information on the GT3 and the ZR1, head to edmunds.com. CARLOS LAGO: And be sure to subscribe. [MUSIC PLAYING]
2019 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 vs. 2018 Porsche 911 GT3: The 1,255-HP Showdown!
Edmunds' Alistair Weaver and Carlos Lago test and compare the 2019 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 and the 2018 Porsche 911 GT3. For similar money, these two super sports cars deliver massive driving thrills and motorsports technology for the street. The ZR1 is the highest-performing Corvette available, with 755 horsepower and a wild optional track package that gives it huge sticky tires and an enormous wing. The GT3 may not have the power bragging rights, but it represents a purity of focus. It's built alongside real race cars, and its 4.0-liter engine revs to a beautiful 9,000 rpm. Which one is the most fun on the road and at the racetrack? Watch to find out!
Features & Specs
Our experts’ favorite 911 safety features:
- Automatic Post-Collision Braking System
- Reduces the severity of a secondary collision by automatically braking the vehicle after an initial collision.
- Lane Change Assist
- Monitors blind spots to the sides and rear of the vehicle and visually alerts the driver when another vehicle is present.
- Active Rear Axle Steering
- Improves stability during high-speed lane changes and increases agility in tight corners.
2018 Porsche 911 GT3 for Sale
2018 Porsche 911 GT3 Overview
What do people think of the 2018 Porsche 911 GT3?
Consumer ratings and reviews are also available for the 2018 Porsche 911 GT3 and all its trim types. 0 Edmunds consumer reviews allow users to sift through aggregated consumer reviews to understand what other drivers are saying about any vehicle in our database. Detailed rating breakdowns (including performance, comfort, value, interior, exterior design, build quality, and reliability) are available as well to provide shoppers with a comprehensive understanding of why customers like the 2018 911 GT3.
Edmunds Expert Reviews
Edmunds experts have compiled a robust series of ratings and reviews for the 2018 Porsche 911 GT3 and all model years in our database. Our rich analysis includes expert reviews and recommendations for the 2018 911 GT3 featuring deep dives into trim levels and features, performance, mpg, safety, interior, and driving. Edmunds also offers expert ratings, road test and performance data, long-term road tests, first-drive reviews, video reviews and more.Read our full review of the 2018 Porsche 911 GT3 here.
Our Review Process
This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.
We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.
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Should I lease or buy a 2018 Porsche 911?
Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.