A worthy stablemate to the vaunted 911, the Porsche Boxster is a convertible sports car that expanded the German brand's owners to include individuals without a trust fund. The latest version - now known as the 718 Boxster – is more capable and powerful than ever, despite a smaller engine and the loss of a couple cylinders.
Porsche 718 Boxster Overview
The fourth-generation Porsche 718 Boxster is two-passenger mid-engine sports car from a brand known for performance, refinement and driving purity. With the fourth generation, Porsche added the 718 prefix to the Boxster name as a tribute to the early-'60s 718 RSK race car.
Introduced in 2017, the 718 Boxster is powered by a turbocharged 2.0-liter four cylinder engine. The forced-induction engine produces 300 horsepower, while the more powerful 718 Boxster S features a larger turbocharged 2.5-liter engine that produces 350 horsepower. A six-speed manual transmission is standard, while a seven-speed PDK dual-clutch automatic with manual shifting mode is optional.
In stock trim with the optional PDK transmission, the 718 Boxster zips from 0 to 60 mph in 4.7 seconds. The S model only takes 4.2 seconds to reach the same speed, and it is also more efficient than the outgoing model.
The 718 Boxster’s suspension provides exceptional handling, while the steering system is more direct than ever. Uprated brakes add to the overall driving experience, making the 718 Boxster an enthusiast’s delight.
The Boxster’s driver-centric cockpit features a touch-screen infotainment system in the center stack, while a three-instrument gauge cluster sits directly in front of the driver. A rev counter is front and center and a color screen to the right shows important vehicle information.
Options include LED headlights, power folding side mirrors, power-adjustable sport seats, heated seats and a premium sound system. Available driver-assistive technologies include adaptive cruise control and lane-change assist.
The Porsche 718 Boxster is a leader in the luxury sports car segment, competing alongside the related 718 Cayman, as well as the Audi TT, Chevrolet Corvette, Jaguar F-Type, Mercedes-Benz SLC, Nissan 370Z and Alfa Romeo 4C.
Earlier Porsche Boxster Models
The first-generation Porsche Boxster was launched for the 1997 model year. The name is a combination of the words “boxer,” which refers to the horizontally opposed engine, and roadster, which indicates this model’s two-seat drop-top configuration.
Initially, the Boxster was powered by a 2.5-liter six-cylinder engine. This engine was replaced in 2000 by a 2.7-liter six-cylinder, and a Boxster S with a bigger, more powerful 3.2-liter flat-six was also added to the lineup at that time. In 2003, the Boxster received a refresh, and both engines gained horsepower and torque.
The second-generation Boxster arrived for the 2005 model year. The new model featured a 2.7-liter six-cylinder engine and came standard with a five-speed manual transmission. A six-speed manual and five-speed automatic were available as options. The Boxster S model was available with a standard six-speed manual and optional five-speed automatic.
A truly premium sports car, the second-generation Boxster was equipped with a lengthy list of standard equipment, including navigation and heated seats.
For 2009, the Boxster was upgraded with a minor styling refresh and larger engines. A six-speed manual transmission became standard across the lineup and a new seven-speed dual-clutch automatic became available as an option. The Boxster would also get tech features like Bluetooth and iPod connectivity for the first time.
The third-generation Porsche Boxster was launched for 2013, representing a car that is longer, lower and wider than the second-generation model. Engines were again revamped for more power than before.
The third-generation Boxsters comes standard with a six-speed manual transmission, while Porsche’s highly respected seven-speed PDK transmission is also available.