2018 Porsche 911 GT3 first drive review: Country roads and chicken livers

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2018 Porsche 911 GT3 first drive review: Country roads and chicken livers
2018 Porsche 911 GT3 first drive review: Country roads and chicken livers
2018 Porsche 911 GT3 first drive review: Country roads and chicken livers
2018 Porsche 911 GT3 first drive review: Country roads and chicken livers
2018 Porsche 911 GT3 first drive review: Country roads and chicken livers
2018 Porsche 911 GT3 first drive review: Country roads and chicken livers
2018 Porsche 911 GT3 first drive review: Country roads and chicken livers
2018 Porsche 911 GT3 first drive review: Country roads and chicken livers
2018 Porsche 911 GT3 first drive review: Country roads and chicken livers
2018 Porsche 911 GT3 first drive review: Country roads and chicken livers
2018 Porsche 911 GT3 first drive review: Country roads and chicken livers
2018 Porsche 911 GT3 first drive review: Country roads and chicken livers
2018 Porsche 911 GT3 first drive review: Country roads and chicken livers
2018 Porsche 911 GT3 first drive review: Country roads and chicken livers
2018 Porsche 911 GT3 first drive review: Country roads and chicken livers
2018 Porsche 911 GT3 first drive review: Country roads and chicken livers
2018 Porsche 911 GT3 first drive review: Country roads and chicken livers
2018 Porsche 911 GT3 first drive review: Country roads and chicken livers
2018 Porsche 911 GT3 first drive review: Country roads and chicken livers
2018 Porsche 911 GT3 first drive review: Country roads and chicken livers
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2018 Porsche 911 GT3

The GT3 does its best work on your ego. Click all the right buttons, send the PDK and the sport exhaust and the active dampers into their most rigidly defined programs, and the car turns most any driver into a demigod. It hosts a track precision app, nestled within its infotainment display, to measure lap times and grip levels, a fitness tracker for your driving habits.

Its sueded wheel seems to connect directly as it caresses corners. Rear-wheel steering dials in 1.5 degrees of opposite lock below 31 mph, but drops out of sight above 50 mph so the natural relationship between wheel angle and tire direction are restored.

You don’t want this car every day, unless the roads are freshly paved or meticulously maintained. The adaptive dampers are merely an excuse the get it from two-lane to two-lane. Cracked highways drive the GT3 nuts, send it scatter-brained across bumps like it’s forgotten its keys. A front-axle lift is a must if it’s garaged anywhere outside the coastal plain: a couple of degrees of driveway cant will scrape with the awful noise that only rank amateurs are supposed to make.

The few remaining 2018 GT3s aren’t much changed from those in the year prior. A GT Sport-style steering wheel mimics the one in the hallowed 918 Spyder. The only big difference comes with the sticker price.

You can’t put a number on feel-good driving. You can put a tariff on it. The base price for the 2018 911 GT3 is $144,650. Add composite brakes, front axle lift, LED headlights, full bucket seats (if your hips are slim), $4,220 worth of Chalk paint, and silver gray seat belts, and you’re in for $168,520.

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Or you can line up for the 911 GT3 RS, which gets hood ducts and other aero for twice the downforce of this car, as well as 20 more horsepower and 8 additional pound-feet of torque. It’s two ticks quicker to 60 mph, but has no manual option and has a few thousand more dollars tacked on its out-the-door price.

I head in the door and duck a little into the low-ceiling gas-station food stop, then pull out an unwelcome smartphone and tally up the differences. A pastor’s working his fevered pompadour on dialing-for-dollars TV. The chicken livers smell fried, and fried right.

My plate’s empty.

I don’t eat chicken livers.

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