March 22, 2012

Porsche Boxster S

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The 2.7-litre motor in the base Porsche Boxster car is an all-new direct injection flat-six producing 265hp and 206lb ft. Meanwhile the 3.4-litre engine in the S is a revised version of the engine from the last 987 model with slightly increased outputs – 315hp and 265lb ft. Both have variable valve lift and timing.

Does anyone not agree that this car finally delivers on the styling promise laid down by the original concept in 1993? It’s not as dainty, but in stretching the wheelbase 60mm, pulling the front track out 40mm and the rear 18mm – not to mention making the car longer (32mm) and lower (13mm) with a shorter front overhang (minus 27mm) Porsche has taken the Boxster to an LA tuning shop and given it the full number. Where once the wheels hid apologetically within swollen panels, they now push confidently outwards and the whole car sits down into the road surface. To me, it’s the best looking Porsche since the Carrera GT. Obviously we would love to insure either of these under our Porsche car insurance schemes.

It takes about 10 seconds to spot the steering. The wheel is slightly dead in the hands compared to the old car – it doesn’t feel unnatural, just mute. In this instance it is always wise to recall the parable of the Caterham R500 and the Porsche GT3 RS which can also be covered via our Porsche car insurance. After a drive in the Caterham, jumping into the RS will reveal it as being too heavy and completely lacking in steering weight, communication and feel. For about 10 minutes. Once your body adjusts to the change in circumstances – like eyes emerging from a dark cinema on a bright summer’s day – the Porsche will soon feel quite different.

Point the Boxster into a turn and it does two things completely at odds with the expectations laid-down by that initial numbness. It turns with unusual speed and efficiency, then clips the very point on the road you’d been aiming for. Repeat this process for 15 minutes and, like me, you’ll be left guppy-like with admiration. This car doesn’t do over- or understeer at normal road speeds. Its Pirelli P-Zeros have so much grip, the centre of mass is so well positioned and traction is so good it just carves its way through switchbacks with sparkling finesse. It’s only when you’re in the middle of such a sequence, placing this car as accurately as any other you can remember, that you have to ask yourself what you are missing with this newfangled electric rack. The answer is simple: wriggle, squirm, fidget, chatter, patter and writhe. Yes, I miss them too, but they fade into insignificance within the overall Boxster experience. But always drive the car within its limits and ensure you have no unfortunate moments and end up claiming on your Porsche Boxster car insurance.

That searing motor makes great noise and pulls very hard from 3,000rpm all the way to 7,500rpm. There is talk of turbocharged four-cylinder motors in the future, but they just won’t be able to match the sharpness of an atmospheric boxer-six. Matched with a chassis apparently impervious to understeer it gives you so much confidence to endlessly trim cornering lines. This is helped no-end by the proper manual transmission. Not a doctored PDK from the 991, but a stick-shift from the dark ages: three pedals and endless, blip-tastic joy.

As a basis for a new Cayman, it’s mouth-watering stuff.

So on first acquaintance, the Boxster is better looking, a little bit quicker, more capable in the turns and offers 10mm more telescopic longitudinal adjustment of the steering column – whatever that means. In the context of the marketplace only one of these really matters: on looks alone the Boxster could plug the hole created by slow 991 sales in the UK. If people choose to buy it based on the way it drives, so long as they can get their heads around the steering, they will own another great Porsche.

Please follow this link for your Porsche Boxster S Insurance, part of our performance car insurance schemes.

Many thanks to Pistonheads for their kind permission to use the above – the full article can be found here.