997 GT3 Project: Five Essential OEM Mods
At times, procuring some of the more tasteful mods requires plucking them straight from the manufacturer catalog. Suncoast Parts makes it easier than just about anyone to find OEM replacement parts and mods for your Porsche. As a new (to us) GT3, we decided it'd be best to grab a few small things to freshen up the car from the jump: a new center console storage shelf (ours was weathered and peeling from the Florida sun) and a new pollen filter because, well, allergies suck.
Of course that exercise in maintenance conveniently came with five essential 997 GT3 upgrades as well: gloss black headlight washer nozzle heads, LED license plate lights, a silver "sport" gas cap, a GT3RS front spoiler with lip extension, and a fresh set of red deviated seat belts.
That last bit is a strange one. After running the VIN, the car allegedly came with red seat belts from the factory, but had since been swapped for black. Call us a sucker for red, but we felt that returning the car to its original spec would be a nice move. Regardless, the shipment containing these and the console replacement were delayed, so we got to work on everything else to keep the project moving.
Fresh 997 GT3RS front spoiler with lip extension installed
Truthfully, there aren't too many aftermarket front lip options for the 997 GT3—especially ones that offer equal amounts of versatility and durability versus the OEM pieces. Porsche has always been cognizant of its driver-focused demographic; because of that, their front lips have been constructed from ABS plastic to provide a "sacrificial" layer that will hold up well against unexpected road debris.
Manufacturer endorsed options also guarantee perfect fitment and functionality, which is an immense peace of mind.
This GT3 also came with an RS front lip—albeit quite bruised—but was missing the little extension piece. This inconspicuous add-on helps direct air toward the middle radiator and adds some much-welcomed rigidity to the plastic lip.
My last two 997's either had broken cap tethers or succumbed to wear from use, the latter of which triggered intermittent check engine lights. To avoid the frustration, I opted for this "aluminum look" gas cap from the start. It doesn't hurt that it's been on sale, so the cost premium over a plain cap was justifiable.
The new cap comes with replacement tethers as well. Two sizes are included—the shorter of which is intended for use with the OEM cap—but for this upgrade, you'll want to opt for the longer version.
Incandescent license plate light (left) vs LED license plate light (right)
Suncoast raves about their LED license plate lights as the "perfect amount" of output and we're happy to report that's absolutely...true. Aftermarket upgrades are often blindingly overpowering and are prone to failure; since these units from Suncoast are genuine Porsche parts, that worry is over.
Keen observers will note that the position of the new housing's connector is different, but the offset actually makes installation much easier.
While the OEM chrome headlight nozzles didn't look completely out of place next to the shiny housings, paint-matched variants (they come in either chrome or gloss black as ready-to-paint items) give off a much cleaner aesthetic overall. Fortunately, the swap is a couple minute procedure: pull up on the stalk, carefully pin it in its extended position, remove the OEM chrome cap, and snap the new one in place.
As aforementioned, this particular part hasn't yet arrived, but it's something that we have done on our previous 997.2 C2S build. Now that these cars are getting on in age, new safety-related items can't hurt; the pop of color is an added bonus. Since the replacement belts come as an entire replacement unit, there isn't a need to disassemble your factory reels to swap the fabric. This makes the entire swap relatively straight-forward.
All in all, I think this is a good mix of functional and visually impactful OEM+ mods that will help take your car to that proverbial next level. Much more to come for our 997 GT3 Build, so stay tuned as more upgrades get installed!