Porsche’s Celebrating 50 Years of RS Cars at Indy, and You’re Invited

It all began with the 1972 Carrera RS, but now the moniker graces both GT3 and GT2 variants of 911 and even a Cayman.

This year marks 50 years since Porsche’s RS moniker first came on the scene, and the automaker will be celebrating with its second-annual Sports Car Together Fest to be held on Labor Day weekend.

Believe it or not, it’s been half a century since the 1972 Porsche 911 Carrera RS debuted as the first production P-car to string the letters R and S together (yes, I know R and S are saddled beside each other in the word “Porsche” but you know what I mean). Sporting a 2.7-liter engine larger than the standard car’s, it went on to become one of the most legendary Porsches to ever exist and launch an entire dynasty of lightened RS cars. In the ’90s, Porsche introduced a limited-run RS version of the 964 before giving the suffix to the 993 as well. 


Starting with the 996 generation, the letters RS—which, by the way, stand for “rennsport” or “racing” in German—came after “GT3” and denoted the most track-focused 911 available bar the GT2. The 997 spawned multiple RS 911 variants: an initial GT3 RS with a 3.8-liter flat-six, a 4.0-liter version aptly called the GT3 RS 4.0, and a 612-horsepower GT2 RS. The practice of sticking RS onto both the GT3 and GT2 variants of the 911 was carried over into the 991-gen (the GT2 RS, in fact, was the only GT2 available in this era). Just last year, the RS name branched out to grace its first Cayman model, the 718 Cayman GT4 RS, The Drive‘s first impressions of which you can read here

The RS suffix’s 50th birthday is, to Porsche, a pretty big deal and the company is celebrating at this year’s SCTF event at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The agenda includes a couple of rounds of one-make Porsche Cup Car racing, sports car racing, time attacks, as well as family-friendly trackside activities. A special exhibition area has been reserved to host what is expected to be the world’s largest gathering of Porsche GT cars. Dealers will partake in a Classic Restoration Challenge and an esports racing championship will take place on-site, among other activities.

The event is scheduled to take place at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Sept. 2-4. 

Got a tip or question for the author? You can reach them here: chris.tsui@thedrive.com