When it debuted for the 1997 model year, the Porsche Boxster ushered in an era of the more affordable sports car, not to mention the more affordable Porsche. Featuring a finely balanced midengine layout, keenly responsive handling and steering, and the performance of a flat-6 engine, the Boxster quickly became one of the best-selling sports cars on the road.
Now in its third generation, the Boxster formula remains the same, yet Porsche has made evolutionary changes to better compete against its recently redesigned rivals. Comfort, improved build quality and an increased number of convenience features all make the Boxster considerably better than before. If you can swing a sometimes pricey bottom line, there's no more compelling choice for a sports car, new or used.
Current Porsche Boxster
The Porsche Boxster has been redesigned for 2013. Its styling is similar to that of the previous two generations, though it has a prominent spoiler on the trunk lid between the taillights, and the shape of the doors no longer resembles those of the Porsche 911. The cabin is larger and features the tall center console that has been adapted from the Panamera for the whole line of Porsche models. The chassis and suspension have been honed for sharper handling, although the newly added electric-assist might not live up to the same standard of performance.
There are two models of the rear-wheel-drive Boxster. The base car gets a 265-horsepower 2.7-liter flat-6 engine that is carried with the majority of its weight between the front and rear axles, a design that fosters quicker changes of direction. The Boxster S features a 3.4-liter flat-6 good for 315 hp. Both engine choices are matched with a six-speed manual transmission, while a seven-speed dual-clutch automated manual (known as PDK) is optional. A hill-holder function is included with either transmission choice in order to make it easier to launch on a hill without inadvertently rolling backward.
This is the most comfortable and spacious Boxster yet, with such optionally available niceties as a heated steering wheel and Bose surround-sound audio. Nevertheless, the Boxster remains a pure driver's car, arguably more so than the Porsche 911. With its midengine layout and finely tuned chassis, few cars can deliver the same easily accessed driving joy as the Boxster. Our primary complaint remains the Boxster's hefty price (compared to other sports car, not other Porsches), especially once you start sampling from that options list.
Read the most recent 2015 Porsche Boxster review.
If you are looking for older years, visit our used Porsche Boxster page.