Outside of Germany, the most rabid of Porsche fans most likely reside in America. Don't take my word for it, just listen to Andre Oosthuizen, Vice President of Marketing for Porsche Cars North America, "The Porsche Club of America is home to passionate ambassadors who have been fostering the appreciation and recognition of Porsche for 60 years. We are proud and honored to celebrate this anniversary with a very special edition of Porsche's most storied sports car – the 911."
Want further proof? Then let me direct you to this 430 horsepower bright blue chunk of evidence right here.
Read any history of Porsche, or even one of a specific model, and something that seems to permeate the pages and the interviews with any and all people involved, is this curious sense of family; a very warm and welcoming company mindset that runs counter to conventional wisdom on coldly efficient, by-the-numbers Teutonic existence.
This even extends to individual branches of clubs dedicated to the Stuttgart marque. Getting members of The Porsche Club of America to say anything bad about their favorite brand, even repugnant little heaps like 914s, is next to impossible, such is their love for all things Dr. Ferdinand started.
There will be no need for equivocating or hemming-and-hawing when it comes to talking about the GTS Club Coupe.
The GTS Club Coupe harkens back to a time when Porsches were not gewgaws for rich podiatrists from the burbs. The GTS Club Coupe is all about what makes Porsches so interesting to gearheads: Speed, handling, speed, grip, brakes, and speed; lots and lots of speed. Oh, and history. That's important too.
"Celebrating six decades of the largest Porsche club organization in the world, Porsche Cars North America is commemorating this milestone with a 60 unit limited-production run of the Club Coupe based on the 911 Carrera GTS," so says the Porsche press release. That's a nice thank you to their most devoted of acolytes and also highlights the fact that Porsche has been hammering around tracks in the New World for six decades.
The GTS Club Coupe features a delightful styling nod that reaches back over four decades – a ducktail spoiler. Yes, it's not as aerodynamically efficient as a true airfoil hanging out the back, but that same quick and dirty trick for more rear end stick that works on the GTS Club Coupe also worked on the frighteningly effective Porsche 911 RS. There is also a more pronounced front fascia designed to work aerodynamically with the ducktail rear.
Other styling details are the 44 mm wider body seen on the 911 Carrera 4 models with a rear wheel drive platform. There are SportDesign side mirrors, black framed headlights, and taillights tinted in black. The doors are marked with black "Club Coupe" model designations, just in case you're forgetting you're driving something special. Twenty-inch Sport Classic wheels painted in semi-gloss black with polished wheel centers and rim flanges are also standard.
It is also available in only one color, a newly created "Club Blau".
On the inside there is a special GTS Interior Package. The stitching, seat belts, and rev counter are in contrasting Carmine Red, while the dashboard trim strips, door trim and center console are finished in racy carbon fiber. The steering wheel has a red 12 o’clock marker and two-tone stitching in Carmine Red and Blue. The center compartment lid has an embossed “60” and the dashboard trim is personalized with “GTS Club Coupe 60 Years Porsche Club of America” lettering above the glove compartment. Stainless steel doorsills that read “GTS Club Coupe” serve as a further cudgel to remind both you, and any plebian passengers, just how special this ride is.
But this is no mere badge engineered trim package, oh no. There's lots of tech goodies under that "Club Blau" skin as well.
Powering the GTS Club Coupe is an improved version of the Carrera S plant. It cranks out 430 hp and can propel the soap-shaped GTS Club Coupe from a standstill to 60 mph in a deliciously quick 3.8 seconds. Those figures only apply when you tic the option box for the PDK dual-clutch seven-speed transmission. There's no figures for what the standard box can do, but c'mon, it's 2015, don't be a complete Luddite, get the paddle shifters. The downside of the PDK-equipped car is that the terminal velocity is 1 mph slower than the standard, 189 mph versus 190 mph (in the neighborhood of 305 km/h).
There is also a third center radiator to keep things cooler and a standard Sport Exhaust system with black chrome tips. The GTS Club Coupe also features Porsche's Active Suspension Management system, incorporating adaptive dampers and a 10 mm lower ride, and Porsche Torque Vectoring. There's also the Sport Chrono Package with dynamic engine mounts, to help with the handling characteristics.
There's only two pieces of bad news here. One, the MSRP is an eye-watering US$136,060 and, even worse, Porsche is only making 60 of the GTS Club Coupe.