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  •   Richard Meaden reacted to this post about 3 years ago
    Exit music. Porsche’s turbocharged four-cylinder 718 Boxster is a dynamic marvel – but it’s lost its soulful soundtrack. Words Robert Coucher. IGNITION / New Cars / #Porsche-718-Boxster / #Porsche-718 / #Porsche / #2016 / #Porsche-718-Boxster-S-982 / #Porsche-718-Boxster-S / #Porsche-982 / #Porsche-718-Boxster-S / #Porsche-Boxster-982 /

    The new 718 Boxster is the first flat-four-powered #Porsche since the 914 of the 1970s. Its name references the mid-engined, four-cylinder racing ‘seven-eighteen’ that won the Targa Florio in ’59, ’60 and ’63. While most roadgoing Porsche 356s of the 1950s and ’60s were fitted with Volkswagen-derived pushrod engines – I had one and never liked the VW soundtrack that much – the 718 had the legendary Fuhrmann quad-cam that was famous for its wall of deafening sound.

    The new car comes as an entry-level 2.0-litre with 295bhp (£41,739) or the 2.5-litre, 345bhp Boxster S (£50,695). Both are turbocharged, more powerful by 35bhp, and deliver 74lb ft and 44lb ft more torque respectively. Despite looking like a mere update, the design is almost entirely new (bootlids, windscreen and electric roof are carried over), yet it looks more aggressive and the 3D nomenclature on the rear lid is a lovely detail. A reprofiled upper dashboard features inside and, with the Sports Chrono Package, you get a little Ferrari-inspired manettino switch where you can dial in Normal, Sport or Sport Plus. Steering is 10% more direct, and the base Boxster employs the brakes from the previous Boxster S while the 718 S features four-piston calipers from the 911 Carrera. Its uprated suspension is combined with a beefed-up rear subframe.

    The engine starts with a tough grumble. Move away and the steering immediately reveals exactly the right amount of weight and feel, the ride in Normal setting is extremely good, the six-speed manual gearbox is flick-with-two-fingers light and uber-direct, though the clutch is quite firm and long of travel. The seven-speed PDK trans is bullet-quick, now so good it makes the manual seem wrong in this bang-up-to-date package. Here in Portugal, both prove agile and taut, with superb lateral control through the slalom cones and lane-change test. Yet it’s on winding mountain roads that the 718 S really comes alive, thanks to the extra grunt provided by its turbocharger’s variable geometry. Its steering is pin-point accurate, the brakes are hugely powerful and feel some, the chassis dynamics heroic and all that power is a real rush. The perfect sports car of the moment, then?

    Almost. Phasing out that wonderful flat-six in favour of these turbocharged flat-fours has ushered an elephant into the room – and it’s tonedeaf. The power and delivery of the S’s 2.5-litre engine is peerless – better than the 2.0-litre, which suffers some lag – but the soundtrack is flat and droning. At low revs it emits a hint of that gruff Subaru Impreza syncopated throb but it’s dull at a cruise and, while it revs willingly to 7500rpm, it does so with little aural joy.


    For the S to crack 60mph in 4.2 seconds with a top speed of 177mph (4.7sec and 171mph for the base Boxster) is incredible, especially considering the engine capacity and new-found claimed efficiency (fuel economy is improved by 13%). But these gains come at the expense of one of the automotive world’s most evocative and heart-warming soundtracks. And that’s sad.

    Left and below 718 Boxster looks familiar yet different. The big news is midmounted and rarely seen: four cylinders not six, plus a turbo.
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  •   Richard Meaden reacted to this post about 3 years ago
    The new mid-engine roadster with a four-cylinder engine: #Porsche-718-Boxster / #Porsche-718 / #Porsche / #Porsche-718-Boxster-S / #2017 / #Porsche-718-Boxster-S-982

    Kuala Lumpur. Sime Darby Auto Performance (SDAP), the official importer of Porsche in Malaysia, introduced the new 718 Boxster on 2nd August 2016 at the Glass House, Kuala Lumpur.

    “The new 718 Boxster models offer a significant leap in power and performance compared to the previous generation. It is a mid-engine sports car that combines the sporting spirit of the legendary 718 race car with that of the sports car of tomorrow,” said Arnt Bayer, Chief Executive Officer of SDAP at the launch.

    The centrepiece of the new model series is the newly developed four-cylinder flat engine with turbocharging. With a 2.0-litre engine, the 718 Boxster develops 300 horsepower, while the 718 Boxster S employs a turbocharger with variable turbine geometry, generating 350 horsepower from 2.5 litres of displacement. In the S-model, Porsche also uses a turbocharger with Variable Turbine Geometry (VTG). In fact, Porsche is now the only manufacturer to offer VTG technology in production cars with petroldriven engines, both in the 911 Turbo and in the 718 Boxster S. Impressive here is the considerable power gain of 26 kW (35 hp) compared to the previous Boxster models and the greater efficiency of the new turbo engines. The new 718 Boxster models have fuel economy improvements of up to 13 per cent.

    The rear of the new models, meanwhile, is a strong expression of the superlative sporty performance that they are capable of. The cleanly-defined lines and two slim taillights that are connected by a solid accent trim are all designed to add width and prowess to the sleek overall silhouette of the new 718 Boxster models. A quintessential Boxster characteristic, the fabric roof, can be opened and closed in just 9 seconds up to a speed of 50 km/h.
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