Lighter in weight but still the most powerful Boxster ever made
The wraps have been taken off one of the most gratifying cars ever produced – with the second generation Porsche Boxster Spyder marking a new edition of the purist roadster.
The guys at Porsche state that it’s the most powerful and fastest Boxster ever created.
With 375 horsepower - 45 more than the Boxster GTS and 10 fewer than the Cayman GT4 - from a naturally aspirated, 3.8-litre flat-six borrowed from the 911 Carrera S and a top speed of 180 mph, the numbers back up the boast. The larger, more-powerful engine also is shared with the GT4, and it trumps the 3.4-litre unit from the S and GTS.
The little beauty accelerates from a standstill to 60mph in just 4.5 seconds, which is half a second faster than the Boxster GTS with a manual transmission. The unwavering standard of the North Loop of the Nürburgring proves Porsches claims convincingly - it takes seven minutes and 47 seconds for the Boxster Spyder to come around to the starting/finishing line again.
The distinctive design of the Boxster Spyder includes stylistic elements that recall legendary sports and race cars from Porsche. For example, as a tribute to the 718 Spyder from the 1960s, the new Boxster Spyder has two prominent bubbles behind the headrests - known as streamliners - that stretch over the long trunk lid.
The new roll-over bar trim creates harmonious styling. The manually folding hood recalls earlier roadsters. The fins that extend rearwards give the side profile its characteristic design. The front and rear sections of the Boxster Spyder come from the Cayman GT4 and underscore the vehicle's status as a high-performance sports car.
They make the new top roadster ten millimeters longer and eleven millimeters lower than the Boxster GTS. Particularly striking are the three large air intakes with black screens at the front that supply cooling air to the three heat exchangers behind them.
With lightweight sports bucket seats are designed for drivers with sporty ambitions. More so than in any other Boxster, the interior of the Spyder conveys an atmosphere of pure driving pleasure.
The steering wheel, with a diameter of 360 mm, has already proven itself in the Cayman GT4, and the shorter gear shift lever enables very rapid gear shifts.
In keeping with the model's purist design, standard equipment includes neither a radio nor an air conditioner in order to reduce weight. In place of a radio, there is a compartment for storing small items. However, any of the optional Boxster audio systems - up to a Burmester sound system - as an option. An air conditioner can also be ordered as optional equipment, as can the Porsche Communication Management (PCM) system with all of its special features, for instance.
The color black defines the interior ambiance with many elements in Alcantara. The door opener straps are reminiscent of classic race cars. Trim strips are painted in the exterior color - customers can select from a total of ten colors. Particularly striking among the optional equipment features is the Spyder Classic package, which Porsche has bundled exclusively for the top model of the Boxster family. In this package, garnet-red leather is used to upholster the top of the instrument panel, the seats and the sides of the center console.
As a genuine roadster, the Boxster Spyder offers a traditional sports-car driving experience at today's performance levels.
The roadster package is completed by a lightweight design hood, which is manually opened and closed and is only latched and unlatched electrically.
Putting the hood up is a cinch: you simply open the rear top compartment lid and fold out the hood. The driver inserts the fins on the trunk lid and simply pushes a button to pull the top tight to the windshield frame. To take the top down, these steps are performed in reverse order.
The purist equipment features of the Boxster Spyder are the result of a systematic lightweight approach. At 1,315 kilograms, the Spyder is the lightest sports car in the Boxster family.
The large boot lid, for instance, is made of aluminum, and the lightweight design hood with its unheated polymer rear window weighs eleven kilograms less than the usual automatic hood of the Boxster.
The results are clearly noticeable to the driver. This car's center of gravity is lower than that of any other Boxster, and its weight-to-power ratio has been reduced to 3.5 kilograms per hp. This makes the Boxster Spyder handle as nimbly as a go-cart, yet it accelerates as vehemently as a high-performance sports car.
Hence, the mid-engine roadster from Porsche fully plays out the advantages of its driving dynamics concept. The wide 20-inch wheels, which are reserved exclusively for the Spyder, further enhance the lateral dynamic benefits of the modified sport chassis that is based on the suspension of the Boxster GTS. The front wheels are 8.5 inches wide, and the rear wheels 10.5 inches.
Power distribution to the two rear wheels is via a classic mechanical differential lock that is part of the Porsche Torque Vectoring (PTV) system. The locking effect is 22 per cent under power and 27 per cent in overrun. The brake system has higher performance than systems in the other Boxster models. Brake calipers and rotors come from the 911 Carrera S.