The Porsche Boxster prototype,
designed by Grant Larson, was first
introduced at the 1993 Detroit Auto Show. Based on the enthusiastic public response,
Porsche immediately set to work on the real roadster.
Boxster Prototype 1993
Porsche 550 Spyder
Porsche Boxster, 986.
1997 - 2004
Porsche Boxster 1997
Boxster w. Hardtop
Boxster w. Top Up
The Porsche Boxster, designed by Harm Lagaay based on
the original Boxster concept, was first introduced in late 1996 in Europe and on
January 4th 1997 at the L.A. Auto Show. It was an immediate hit.
Porsche designed the Boxster as a modern version of the Porsche 550 Spyder
of the mid 1950's, like the one pictured on the left. Although it wasn't the most powerful
race car of the time, its mid engine design helped make it one of the most successful. The
name Boxster comes from combining the Boxer (motor) with Roadster, which certainly fits
this car. As an internal designation, the first generation Boxster is known as the 986.
Because of its popularity, Porsche was unable to produce
enough Boxsters at its main plant in Stuttgart, so they contracted
assemble of most Boxsters to Valmet Automotive in Uusikaupunki, Finland.
The Boxster's mid-engine layout, with the engine located in front of the
rear wheels, makes the Boxster handle like a dream with almost equal weight on its front
and rear wheels. It is a true driver's car. It closely resembles the prototype first shown
at the 1993 Detroit Auto Show. The mid-engine layout means that there is no rear seat,
but there are 2 trunks. One in front and one in the back.
The first generation Boxster had a liquid cooled 2.5 liter boxer six
cylinder engine rated at 201 hp which propelled the car to 100 kph in 6.9 seconds. The
engine is also called a flat six because of its design, with two banks of 3 cylinders
positioned horizontally opposite each other. This design allows a very low centre of
gravity for the engine. The real beauty of this car is the way it handled with its neutral
balance and low center of gravity.
Porsche Boxster 987
2006 - 2012
2006 Boxster Interior
In 2005, the second generation Boxster, with model designation 987 was
introduced, with revised headlights and larger front intakes for the twin radiators.
Side air inlets where also increased in size for additional cooling and feeding air to the
fuel injection system. The taillights and automatic spoiler, which extends at speeds over
120 km/hr, where also revised. In the Porsche tradition, it was faster with improved
handling. It now has a 2.7 liter engine rated at 240 hp propelling the Boxster from 0 -
100 kph in 6.2 seconds.
The Boxster S with its 3.2 liter, 280 hp engine accomplishes the same task
in 5.4 seconds.
For 2007, both cars retain the same body, but received another bump in
power. The Boxster with the 2.7 liter engine developing 245 hp and the Boxster S
getting a larger 3.4 liter engine and 295 hp.
For 2009, the Boxster received a minor facelift and is
refered to internally as a 987.5. The flat six engine went from 2.7 to
2.9 liter developing 255 hp. The Boxster S with its 3.4 liter engine
getting a bump to 310 hp thanks to the use of DFI (direct fuel
injection). Both engines where also redesigned to eliminate the IMS
bearing. Also new for 2009 was the optional automatic transmission. The
Tiptronic being replaces with PDK (Porsche Doppelkupplungsgetriebe or
dual clutch transmission).
Porsche Boxster 981
In 2012, Porsche introduced a completely redesigned, third generation
Boxster at the Geneva Auto Show, with sales of the 2013 model starting
in July. Internally, it has the code name 981. Every body panel and the
whole interior is completely new.
This new model is built at both the main factory in
Stuttgart and also at a new one (the former Karmann plant in Osnabrück,
This new Boxster includes energy saving features like
Auto Start/Stop (Which can be disabled at the touch of a button.),
thermal management to shorten warm up time, dual air intakes for better
engine breathing and electric servo power steering which eliminates
engine drag from traditional power steering pumps. Weight has also been
reduced through use of lighter materials such as aluminum doors.
A longer and wider wheelbase improves handling of this car
which has already been considered to be the benchmark in the handling
category. Further improvements include the top which will now
latch/unlatch and lower or raise in a mere 9 seconds at the touch of a
In 2016, Porsche introduced another update to the
Boxster. Most body panels received a mild redesign. The big change
however, was replacing the previously fabulous naturally aspirated flat
six engine with a new turbo charged flat four cylinder. With an internal
designation of 982, Porsche also added the number 718 to both the
Boxster and its coupe version, the Cayman.