Porsche 718 Boxster review

Category: Sports car

Section: Costs & verdict

Available fuel types:petrol
Available colours:
Porsche 718 Boxster 2021 instruments detail
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  • Porsche 718 Boxster 2021 front tracking
  • Porsche 718 Boxster 2021 rear cornering
  • Porsche 718 Boxster 2021 front seats
  •  Porsche 718 Boxster 2021 seats
  • Porsche 718 Boxster 2021 instruments detail
  • Porsche 718 Boxster 2021 front wide tracking
  • Porsche 718 Boxster 2021 right panning
  • Porsche 718 Boxster 2021 rear right tracking
  • Porsche 718 Boxster 2021 right roof opening
  • Porsche 718 Boxster 2021 front boot
  • Porsche 718 Boxster 2021 rear boot
RRP from£48,490
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Costs & verdict

Everyday costs, plus how reliable and safe it is

Costs, insurance groups, MPG and CO2

It’s got the Porsche badge on its nose, so, naturally, buying a 718 Boxster will require a hefty initial investment (with no discounts available, either) – even more so for our favourite GTS model. If your budget doesn't stretch to the GTS, the Alpine A110 makes a brilliant alternative to the Boxster and Boxster S if you want a driver's car, as does the Audi TT Roadster if you simply want the pleasure of the open air.

More positively, the Boxster will hold onto its value well, so the costs stack up surprisingly well against rivals such as the F-Type Convertible over the longer term, and the short term if you're buying one on a PCP finance deal.

Servicing, replacement parts and tyres will all cost more than you might expect. And our True MPG tests on the Cayman S (basically a Boxster with a roof, so the results will be similar) revealed an average of just 28.4mpg – the GTS 4.0-litre won't be much worse in the real world despite its bigger capacity. The 2.0-litre Cayman did better, managing a much more palatable 34.4mpg in our True MPG cycle.

Equipment, options and extras

Porsche is notorious for giving away very little standard equipment and this is true of the Boxster. Even the range-topping GTS model goes without the kind of kit you might expect as standard on a car costing such a serious wedge; you'll need to pay extra for cruise control, power-folding door mirrors, heated seats and even climate control.

So what do you get? Well, the standard Boxster comes with an electric roof, electric windows, air-con, 18in alloy wheels, xenon headlights and part-Alcantara seats. The S adds 19in wheels, while the GTS (our pick) comes with discrete styling upgrades, 20in wheels, lowered adaptive suspension, a limited-slip differential, sports exhaust and the Sports Chrono Pack.

Porsche 718 Boxster 2021 instruments detail

Reliability

In the 2020 What Car? Reliability Survey, Porsche faired poorly as a manufacturer, placing 22nd (joint with Audi) in the 31-strong list of manufacturers. That's a long way behind Toyota in second and BMW in ninth, and just behind Jaguar. And the Boxster itself did terribly in the sports cars and convertibles category, finishing in last place.

Every Boxster comes with a three-year, unlimited-mileage warranty but, like most cars of this type, it will chew through consumables, such as tyres and brakes, at a rate of knots.

Safety and security

There’s no Euro NCAP crash data available on the Boxster, but all versions come with six airbags and the option of automatic emergency braking (with adaptive cruise control), lane-keeping assistance and speed limit recognition. You'll also have to pay extra to add Isofix fittings to the passenger. Most of its rivals come with some, all, or more of that, as standard.

Security experts Thatcham Research awarded the Boxster a maximum five-star rating for resisting theft and four stars for resisting attempts at being broken into.

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Overview

In GTS trim, with its glorious 4.0-litre flat-six engine, the Porsche 718 Boxster sounds amazing, is sensational to drive and is beautifully built – it’s one of the best open-top sports cars on sale. However, if your budget doesn't stretch to that, the four-cylinder versions aren't as pleasing, so it's worth looking instead at the Alpine A110 and Audi TT. Two things to note: the Boxster's reliability is pretty shocking and it's not well equipped.

  • Brilliant handling
  • Surprisingly comfortable ride
  • Classy interior
  • Four-cylinder engines sounds gruff
  • Terrible reliability record
  • You'll want to add lots of options

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