The new 911 is on the way, and the current Carrera lineup features only turbocharged engines, which has some people thinking that the new 911 GT3 and GT3 RS may feature turbocharged powerplants. We don’t think that is going to be the case, but that reason has to do with the Porsche racing team.
If you’re familiar with LMGTE or GTLM racing, you’ve undoubtedly heard the term Balance of Performance (BoP.) This rule has played a big role in Porsche’s decision to keep their race engines as naturally-aspirated flat-six’s rather than going with forced induction.
In GT racing, the amount of power and torque the car is allowed to make is ‘balanced’ by the BoP rule, which aims to have the power-to-weight ratios of all competing cars to be equal. By using a lighter engine, Porsche is able to add more weight to the car in the form of aerodynamic devices and ballasting to get the car’s weight up to the prescribed minimum.
Putting a turbocharged engine in the Porsche RSR race car would neutralize their ability to use BoP to their advantage, which helps explain the origins of the 4-liter flat-six found in the current GT3 and GT3 RS comes in.
All cars in the LMGTE class have to be powered by an engine that is derived from a production unit found in at least 300 street-legal cars. There are similar rules in place in the GTLM class, where the Porsche racing team fields two RSRs. So, if Porsche wants to put a naturally-aspirated engine in their RSR race cars, they have to put it in a production car as well. That engine is the 4-liter flat-six.
The only reasons we see that could lead Porsche to turbocharge the GT3 or GT3 RS would be if the FIA and IMSA do away with the BoP rule – which is highly unlikely – or if Porsche pulls out of GT racing all together – which is even less likely.
The new GT3 and GT3 RS haven’t been released yet, so if you overhear someone saying that it will be turbocharged, don’t listen. BoP has affected more than just the cars on the race track, which is an interesting thought considering how controversial the rule is to some.