Porsche Boxster Open full 9 point review
There are three flat-six engines available: a 2.7 in the Boxster, a 3.4 in the Boxster S and GTS, and a 3.8 in the Spyder. The 2.7-litre model is quick enough for most tastes, while the S is truly rapid, pulling strongly from 2500rpm and really flying once you’ve passed 5000rpm. The GTS is even faster, and all versions are quicker with the optional PDK automatic gearbox fitted. The Spyder is fairly hardcore, lightweight version, but is expensive and harder to live with than the others.
Ride & Handling
Porsche’s roadster will demolish any B-road. You can carry huge speed through corners, and the superb traction allows you to power out of bends even faster than you went in to them. The Boxster also rides remarkably smoothly; it’s definitely firm, but it never becomes unsettled by bumps. The GTS has adaptive dampers as standard, which improve comfort and make the car even better to drive. The electric power steering allows you to place the Boxster accurately, and it’s well weighted.
The Boxster’s fabric roof does a great job of keeping you isolated from wind and road noise as well as keeping off the elements, although the Spyder’s different manual roof lets in much more noise and bluster. The engines are pretty quiet at a cruise, but sound great when you put your foot down. The large, wide tyres generate a bit of road noise at speed, but not too much, while the cabin is reasonably well isolated from buffeting – assuming you fork out extra for the optional wind deflector.
Buying & Owning
It’s got a Porsche badge on the nose, so naturally it’ll require a hefty initial investment. There won’t be any discounts available, either. Ever. Still, it’s actually reasonable value given the performance and handling prowess, and the Boxster is reasonably efficient for a car this fast, so running costs - although steep - aren’t prohibitive. It’ll hold on to its value well, too.
Quality & Reliability
Everything you touch, move, twist, slide and prod feels beautifully built. How reliable the Boxster will be is tricky to judge, because Porsche doesn’t sell enough cars to be included in the JD Power ownership satisfaction survey. The German brand did finish a disappointing 20th (out of 36 makers) in the most recent Reliability Survey, though.
Safety & Security
There’s stability control as standard, as well as driver and passenger airbags, plus side airbags. The standard steel brakes are more than up to the job of mile after mile of stops from high-speed, but Porsche offers carbon ceramic stoppers as an option. A soft-roofed car will never be absolutely secure, but the Boxster has deadlocks, an immobiliser and an alarm to keep it where you left it.
Behind The Wheel
The seat and steering wheel have loads of adjustment, and the pedals are straight ahead, so it’s easy to find a comfortable driving position. There’s a decent view rearward, by the standards of roadsters, at least, and the raised centre console places the gearlever just where you want it. There are plenty of buttons on the dashboard, however, so it can be tricky to find the one you want at a glance.
Space & Practicality
There’s plenty of space for you and your passenger, and the two small boot compartments mean there’s a decent amount of room for luggage, too. The roof compartment is separate, so folding the roof has no effect on carrying ability. If there’s one slight criticism, it’s that there isn’t a huge amount of stowage space in the cabin.
You’ll almost certainly want to pay extra for Bluetooth, and to make your Boxster more sellable in the future you’ll probably also want to add climate control (you only get manual air-con as standard), heated seats and rear parking sensors. Sat-nav is also a pricey option, although you do at least get part-leather seats as standard.