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Noobie advice please

Tony Eyles

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I’ve just bought a 987.1 CS and am looking to carry out a couple of upgrades, so am looking for some advice please.


Firstly, I wish to fit a Quaife LSD but wondered if there are options to lower the final drive to reduce the overall gearing a bit?


Secondarily, having spent the last few years in a remapped 335d with 350bhp/550lbft the Cayman was always going to feel a bit slow! It’s also well documented that Porsche deliberately detuned the Cayman S so that it didn’t compromise the 997.1, however it does feel a bite strangled. I’ve looked at the Plenum/GT3 throttle body/Intake kit/Milltek cat back exhaust package on Design911 but there doesn’t seem to be an obvious remap option to take advantage of these upgrades? Is there a tuning company that anyone would recommend?


Lastly, my brakes aren’t as impressive as I thought they would be. It’s got new discs and pads but I wonder if anyone has experience of upgrading the pads/braided hoses/fluid?

I have a silly track day toy so this is purely for fast road use.


Any advice would be greatly appreciated!






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Fitting an LSD to a Cayman has been done, but is rarely done still and generally it's not considered a worthwhile upgrade.  Changing the final drive is something more folk crave, until they look into the cost!  


The Cayman S was not de-tuned, it had a smaller engine than the 997 gen1 which was a 3.6 and actually only had about 30bhp more than the Cayman S.  If you're going to fit the upgrades you mentioned then having a new map is worth considering, but don't need mapping per se.  @Aaron's thread discussed this a while back I seen to remember.  


Brakes....??  Whats wrong with them, best bakes in the business! 



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Thanks Mark


Perhaps detuned is the wrong word, but Porsche certainly limited what they did with the CS to make sure it didn’t impinge on 997 sales.

Either way, whilst there is the VarioCam ‘kick’ at 5500rpm, it still feels a bit breathless so I wondered if the induction/exhaust upgrades might do the trick. I’m not actually too fussed about outright performance, more about the sensation of driving it!


The Quaife is only £850 (plus fitting) but I don’t know if anyone has experience and whether there are options to lower the gearing?


The brakes are odd. Agreed Porsche are the best in the business but they certainly feel softer than the 991 GTS I had for a few weeks and are a country mile from the AP 4pot set up I had in an old M3?

The pads and discs are new, so I wonder if either there is an issue with mine or I should upgrade the pads, lines and fluid?



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I wouldn't bother with a LSD in a Cayman personally and as said, forget a shorter final drive they aren't available for road cars and the ones made for competition are not reliable for road.  The other option is to re-gear the box but that is proper competition level expenditure!  You're talking thousands of pounds just for a set of new gears before even having them fitted.  


Comparing the brakes of a 10 year old car to a new, top model 911 is probably likely to disappoint anybody - that said some credit the Cayman bakes with being a bit spongey and some prefer less travel.  Less travel of course doesn't mean they are any less capable of stopping you, which they're not. 


Even still it's a common upgrade on the Cayman brakes to fit a GT3 Master and decent FR pads, maybe even some decent brake fluid.  


Edited by SpannerMan
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maybe the brake fluid needs changing and bleeding properly, CS brakes are notoriously difficult and time consuming to bleed properly. replacing the rubber brake hoses with Aeroquip braided lines will help. 

de-catting the secondary cats (who needs 4 anyway) will help liberate a few ponies, Carnewal seems the most popular and cost effective route.

as for the rest, engine tuning carries an exponential cost curve, the first 10 hp will cost you a tenner, the next 10 hp will cost you £100, 10 more will cost you a grand. I'm sure you get the idea. There are people in the good ol USof A who have fitted turbos with low boost to stock engines for up to 400hp (claimed),and wild tunes with nearly 600. at that point you will need carbon ceramic brakes at least but the chassis appear to be good for it with a few tweeks and suspension bits.

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15 hours ago, MarkGTS said:

The Cayman S was not de-tuned, it had a smaller engine than the 997 gen1 which was a 3.6 and actually only had about 30bhp more than the Cayman S.  If you're going to fit the upgrades you mentioned then having a new map is worth considering, but don't need mapping per se.  @Aaron's thread discussed this a while back I seen to remember.   




This.  For a 3.4, it's quite pokey.  It wasn't intentionally de-tuned by Porsche as far as I can see.  I've not seen anything official besides forum hearsay (and there's a lot of it).


What's your budget and desired HP?  On the gen 1, just get the rears cats removed, throw an aftermarket air filter on and decide if you want more...  You're looking at £1500-2000 for 10 WHP if it's then not enough.  After that, it's exhaust manifolds and mapping, which is another few grand again.

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I’m not after outright power as I’m fortunate enough to have a 330bhp V8 MX5 if I want to be terrified! 

I certainly don’t wish to spend huge sums of money either - it’s just the Cayman top end doesn’t ‘sing’ like I feel it ought to. If this can be freed up with relatively straight forward mods then great. It’s certainly not slow but just feels as though it could be remedied fairly simply?


If an lsd doesn’t lower the gearing then I won’t bother.


As far as the brakes are concerned I’ll start with the bleeding and go from there.



Edited by Tony Eyles
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On a gen 1, the easiest power gains to be had are by removing the rear cats.  You can either remove and gut them or get the rear sections replaced.  Few extra ponies and the cats in the manifold are sufficient for emissions.

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  • 4 months later...

Time to pick this thread up again!


I still intend to do some engine work to free up the top end.

I don’t want the hassle of having to reinstall cats every year for the mot so need to retain one pair, so does it make much difference if I remove the manifold cats or the exhaust cats?


My preference at the moment is probably the plenum, GT3 throttle body, air filter and Milltek manifold back exhaust kit from Design 911. http://www.design911.co.uk/fu/prod127044/Exhaust-Package-and-Plenum-82mm-Throttle-Body-and-Induction-Kit-Porsche-Boxster-987---Cayman_2_2_2/

It’s a chunk of money but it’s cheaper to do it all in one go that stage by stage and I know I’ll eventually end up doing them all so might as well get on with it!


I suspect it will need a remap to get the most out of the mods, but has anyone got any experience of this set up? Also, any suggestions for the remap?

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi Tony, I went with a Carnewal exhaust and K&N airfilter, then a DMS remap a few days later (back in December).....weather has been generally naff on weekends since then so I've not been on a track, but would say that post filter/cat back exhaust work, I notice more smoothness and a bit more pick up at mid rpm ranges, and post remap a noticeable increase in shove at higher rpm, and lower rpm torque when driving normally. Had considered the plenum work but budget limitations prevailed. 

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  • 1 month later...

Thanks Craig


I’ve also gone down the induction kit and Carnewal exhaust route as the relatively budget option and it certainly feels sprightlier but it might just be psychological?!

I've also just shod it with a new set of Michelin Supersports, some braided hoses, taken out the boot counter weight (stop the trunk clunk) and swapped to led lamps which will do me for the moment!

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