The Porsche Boxster prototype was first
introduced at the 1993 Detroit Auto Show. Based on the enthusiastic public response,
Porsche immediately set to work on the real roadster.
The Porsche Boxster 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.
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 meant that there was no rear seat,
but there were 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.
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.