2003 Porsche 911 (996) GT3 RS
Minichamps - 519436200 (diecast)
The 996 generation of the 911 was around from 1998 to 2004. It’s claim to fame was that for the first time Stuttgart was making a street 911 with a water-cooled engine instead of the traditional air-cooled power plants used since the 901. In 1999 the 996 GT3 was first available, and it had one purpose: racing. So with that in mind, the car was stripped of everything non-essential to save weight, like A/C, radio, rear seats, etc. But in 2003 Porsche created it’s specialized track weapon, the GT3 RS. The GT3 RS was a true and worthy heir to the Rennsport badge, first used by the iconic Carrera RS of 1973. It was a legit race car for the public roads, achieving 0 to 100 km/h (60 mph) in 4.2 seconds and a top speed of 300 km/h (190 mph).
The big deal about the 996 generation was the new water-cooled engine (and the ugly fried-egg headlights 🍳). In fact, some purists called it blasphemy. So the RS received a water-cooled 3598 cm³ boxer-6 with DOHC and 24 valves. Basically the same unit used for the regular GT3, but tweaked to produce almost 400 hp. To keep weight at a minimum it also had a polycarbonate rear window and a carbon fiber hood and rear wing. To stop all that it counted on carbon fiber-reinforced silicon carbide ceramic composite brakes. The 2003 RS was a really special car, and with only 140 produced, therefore a rare beast. Rare, and above all, fast.
Despite those ungodly headlights, the GT3 RS is a looker and a real performance car. I had one in 1:18, and at the time it was my favorite modern Porsche. So when I got my red Carrera RS, it was only natural that I also got its modern substitute. But this specific model is even more special than all its heritage. It was a present along with the GT2 RS from Northumberland. Yep, from that Back Street Boys fanboy fantastic buddy of mine, Gary “Howie D.” Ugly Porsche Dude. A very fine model from Minichamps, that captures the real deal outstandingly well in scale.
Thanks (AGAIN!) Gary!