Background on the GT3 R
In 1998 Porsche finally put the air-cooled flat-6 cylinder engine to rest. The last of the air-cooled 911s (993) left Weissach, and the assembly lines in Stuttgart. The 996 was the new 911, and its chassis was the GT car for the future of Porsche Motorsport.
Every component of the 996 was new; chassis, bodywork, gearbox, engine, suspension, engine management, and cooling system. (minus some details that we will talk about in each model year specifications)
At the time of launch, the new GT3 R was made to the current ACO rules for the GT category in 1999.
"The 911 GT3 R is the successor to Porsches highly successful 911 3.8 RSR. This water-cooled 996 based racer has proven to be a formidable challenger in the GT category during the final stages of the 1999 season, which marked its United States debut. The 3.6 liter six cylinder engine develops in excess of 400 horsepower and drives through a GT2 six-speed gearbox equipped with external cooling, pressurized lubrication, and a limited slip differential. The carbon fiber bodywork, combining light weight and strength, makes maximum use of current aerodynamic principles to provide excellent grip with minimum drag.
The chassis of the 911 GT3 R comes completely equipped with the necessary components to comply with current sanctioning body regulations. Fitted, from the factory, with a fuel cell, externally adjustable shock absorbers, spherical bearings at suspension mounting points, electric power steering, and 380 mm., four pistons/caliper brakes, Porsches newest offering will be a "turn key" race car.
The resources of the engineering and production departments at the Weissach facility are totally committed to the production of a sufficient number of GT3 Rs for private teams to mount a multi-car assault for Daytona 2000"
Also in 1998 the last overall victory for Porsche was made at Le Mans in a Prototype vehicle. Soon after the factory announced it would step down from a full factory effort on sportscar racing. The concentration would be to support privateers. The GT3 R was the result of that decision, and the more than a hundred GT3 R and RS's have been made and sold (at this point in early 2003) for competition around the world. Competing in the USA, Europe, Asia, and Japan. More than half of those produced reside in the USA.
The car has won its class in every arena it has entered.