As you may have noticed, the first change for the Boxster is the addition of 718. This number is important as it was used on the successor the 550 Spider in 1957. The 718 used a flat-four engine for power and would go on to be one of Porsche's most successful race cars.
The 718 also signifies another big change. Gone are the two flat-six engines that have been in use since the Boxster was first launched and in their place are two turbocharged flat-four engines. Back in December, we reported on the possible horsepower ratings for the two engines; 295 for the base Boxster and 355 for the Boxster S. The actual numbers are close to what we reported.
- 718 Boxster: Turbocharged 2.0L Flat-Four - 300 horsepower, 280 pound-feet of torque
- 718 Boxster S: Turbocharged 2.5L Flat-Four - 350 horsepower, 309 pound-feet of torque
Porsche says the new engines are 14 percent more efficient than their predecessors. It should be noted this is based on the European fuel economy tests. EPA numbers will be released at a later date.
A six-speed manual comes standard while Porsche's PDK dual-clutch transmission is optional. New on the PDK is “fuel-saving virtual gears” that allows two adjacent gears to partially engage and create an intermediate gear. This allows the Boxster to be more efficient at cruising speed.
Performance wise, the 718 Boxster equipped with PDK and the Sport Chrono Package hits 60 MPH in 4.5 seconds - 0.7 seconds faster than the last generation model - and reaches a top speed of 170. The S hits 60 MPH in 4 seconds - again equipped with PDK and the Sport Chrono Package - and reaches a top speed of 177. Expect the manual to post slightly slower 0-60 MPH times.
Aside from the new name and engines, is there anything else new on the Boxster?
Porsche has made some slight adjustments to the suspension and redesigned the electric-assist steering system that Porsche claims is "10 percent more direct than previously." How Porsche came to that number is unknown. Optional is Porsche Active Suspension Management system which offers a drop in suspension height and adjustable dampers.
The exterior styling is very similar to the current Boxster. Porsche says every part of the body is new except for the front and rear trunk lids, windshield, and convertible top. The only changes we can pick out is a new tail fin and larger side vents. Inside, the 718 Boxster gets a new steering wheel and updated infotainment system.
When will it be out and for how much?
Porsche says the 718 Boxster will be available at dealers sometime in June. Pricing begins at $57,050 for the 718 Boxster, and $69,450 for the 718 Boxster S. Prices include a $1,050 destination charge.