Formerly the entry-level model of Porsche’s sports car lineup, the Porsche 718 Boxster is a mid-engine, rear-drive, two-seat convertible that’s closely related to the 718 Cayman. With the Cayman now taking the place of the Boxster as the 718 line’s base model, the Boxster is now more expensive. With superb handling, excellent ride quality, and two potent yet fuel-efficient turbocharged engines, the Porsche Boxster is a fantastic luxury sports car.
What’s the styling?
Although the 718 is instantly recognizable as Boxster, many of the body panels are new. Some of the detailing, such as the new head- and taillights, is exquisite and the 3-D "Porsche" lettering at the rear is a key differentiator from Boxsters of old. It’s instantly identifiable as a Porsche Boxster; the small shape isn’t jarring like it was 20 years ago. Sharper lines in those two decades have replaced its softer lines but there’s no hard feelings. Instead, the muscular look rises toward the rear end over the back wheels, and wrap up around a tidy tail.
What about the interior?
Inside, it’s more of a facelift than a complete engineering overhaul, but the changes are positive. The infotainment screen is now flush-fitting, faster-reacting and more sensitive to inputs, the driving position is still spot on, and you have a choice of manual and PDK gearboxes. Have the manual – it brings some of the interactivity back into the driving. The roof is brilliant; the build quality is fantastic – it’s a great cabin to spend time in. The front trunk remains small but is just about the right size to fit a weekend’s worth of luggage. Porsche’s proud of the steering wheel options, particularly the fancy 918-inspired design that’s smaller and sportier.
What does the engine offer?
Both 718s use the same 2.5-liter turbocharged flat-four engine as their Boxster S and Cayman S siblings. But thanks to a new intake manifold that improves airflow, as well as a larger-diameter compressor wheel for the turbocharger, overall output increases to 365 horsepower and 317 pound-feet of torque. The manual transmission gets to 60mph in a slightly slower 4.4-seconds but both top out at 180mph. That's with the seven-speed PDK dual-clutch transmission on board; if you spec the slick-shifting six-speed manual, torque is reduced to a still-healthy 309 pound-feet
How is it to handle?
Porsche has this department completely licked. The ride is supple at a cruise, and while Sport mode does firm the suspension up, it’s not bone-shattering. Body control is kept to an impressive minimum, and no matter where, how or when you’re driving, all of the controls feel positive espousing a detailed rapport with your hands and feet. The steering has a gorgeous weighting to it and is pin-sharp, throttle response is accurate, and the six-speed manual ‘box is a delight to use. The clutch and gear lever are both heavy, but that makes it so much more involving. This is a tactile sports car.
How much does it cost?
The Porsche 718 Boxster is a stylish, powerful and affordable performance roadster that can be had at a great starting price of $57,400. Before you add the options, most parting with a further $20,000 on average. So as per, the Boxster is expensive, but even this entry-level drive experience is worthy of the premium.