We can't imagine what Porsche has planned for the redesigned Boxster that's coming in 2013, because the current iteration of the company's starter-level convertible is terrific on all counts. Especially funky is the Spyder version – no roof, no door handles, all driver's Porsche.
You'll Like The 2013 Porsche Boxster If...
If you like to drive and you want to love to drive, or if you love to drive and you've always known that someday you would own a brand-new Porsche convertible, then the all-new 2013 Boxster is what you're all about.
You May Not Like The 2013 Porsche Boxster If...
If you're not into paying $50,000-$60,000 for your open-top ride, then an Audi TT or Nissan 370Z convertible may be more your speed.
The 2013 Porsche Boxster is all-new.
Shockingly quiet with the top up and triumphantly alive with the top down, the 2013 Boxster's interior is the roomiest ever. The seats don't really fit you so much as they absorb you, and the driving touch points – steering wheel, shifter, pedals – all direct you to the giddy purpose of sports car fun.
For the first time ever, since the 1993 Detroit auto show concept car, a Porsche Boxster looks better in person than it does in pictures. The 2013 Boxster possesses a sharper edge to its lines than ever before, and it's got more good angles, top open or closed.
With good power always on tap and 40-percent stiffer, lightest-in-class architecture always with its mind on the road, the 2013 Porsche Boxster drives exactly as your imagination would insist that a sports car drive. Its massive brakes swallow up speed in one gulp without hesitation. And anyone who tells you that the Boxster's new variable-ratio electric power-steering system takes a back seat to the legendary benchmark Porsche mechanical systems of old is just politicking for another drive in a Boxster. The new electric steering is Porsche clean, if not Porsche "snap judgment" quick, but it's not at all hesitant or indecisive. Ride quality shines brightly whether you're trying to capture the flag on a club track or just get to the restaurant on a Friday evening – in fact, the Boxster engines, suspension and brakes all strike that enthusiast/grand-touring-roadster balance so well that Porsche can almost ask for a trademark on it.
With the destination charges included, a 2013 Porsche Boxster's sticker price starts at $50,450. If you want/need the added authority of a Boxster S, your negotiations will start at $61,850. Either way, you'll be able to bask in the sun and the speed and the knowledge that the resale value on your Boxster is holding its own compared to any other convertible in its neighborhood.
Other than the fact that the base Porsche Boxster sport seats are manually adjustable for height and fore/aft positioning (the seatback recline adjustment is electric) in a world where most luxury makers go all-electric, the new Boxsters come deliciously equipped right out of the box. Those manual-adjust seats, for example, are upholstered in durable, suede-like, body-loving Alcantara. The standard "Sport" button on the center console resets the engine responsiveness and quickens the shift points if you have the optional 7-speed PDK automatic transmission.
For the hot-blooded, Porsche offers the traction and handling help of torque-vectoring and the Porsche Active Suspension Management system, and the competition quality of ceramic composite brakes. The Sport Chrono Package enhances launch, acceleration and braking to a track-ready degree. For a price, 20-inch wheels can replace the Boxster's 18s or the Boxster S's 19s. For your more peace-loving side, the Boxster offers park-assist options, heated and ventilated seats and a heated steering wheel, plus a host of upgraded sport seats. Naturally, the requisite audio-system upgrades and infotainment packages and options are also offered.
The external view of the 2013 Boxster is one of its primal and performance bests. There's just enough nodding to previous Porsches in the styling, but every element serves a performance purpose as well, from the aero shape and bigger wheels/tires to the broader stance of its stiffer chassis.
The new Boxster's external balance is mirrored perfectly by the cockpit with its comfy and capable sport seats, plenty sizeable interior, and a top-up quietude that surprised and delighted. As near-exotic as it is, the 2013 Boxster is a cinch to drive easygoing or into battle with equal pleasure.
Under the Hood
The new Boxster S carries over a slightly more horsepowerful version of last year's 3.4-liter flat-6, a masterful powerplant that doesn't have a weakness and roars like a warhorse. Developed from that Boxster S engine, the base Boxster's 2.7-liter flat-6 proves itself a more than willing and capable protege. Both Boxsters are available with a 6-speed manual transmission, or a 7-speed PDK automatic with snappin'-quick shifts and better mpg numbers than the shift-it-yourself gearbox.
265 horsepower @ 6,700 rpm
206 lb-ft of torque @ 4,400-6,500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 20/30 mpg (manual), 22/32 mpg (automatic)
315 horsepower @ 6,700 rpm
266 lb-ft of torque @ 4,500-6,800 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 20/28 mpg (manual), 21/30 mpg (automatic)
The 2013 Porsche Boxster convertible is a fresh take on mid-engine, rear-drive performance that almost captures the sexy 911-style appeal that the Porsche Cayman has mastered. The new Boxster is slightly bigger than the previous-generation car, but it is tighter and lighter. Its interior is quieter, and you can fold its soft top behind the driver in just nine seconds at speeds up to 30 mph (always a hoot to watch). Blessedly, this 2-seat roadster still dances like a pro and can untangle a twisted road with ease. In the roadster market, the 2013 Boxster is flanked by the Audi TT to the less expensive and the all-new 2014 Jaguar F-Type to the more, and right on top of the BMW Z4 and Mercedes-Benz SLK.