2013 Porsche Boxter S Review

By on September 6, 2012
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Porsche’s most exciting car gets even better.

Good: Precise handling; Powerful for its size; Excellent chassis balance; Great sounding engine & exhaust; Updated design makes it look muscular.
Bad: Optional extras which improve driving experience tack on a lot to the total cost; Driving controls a bit too tight.
Price: AED 217,100 (base)/ AED 270,970 (full options)
* The price is the Suggested Retail Price at the time of review. Please call a retailer to confirm the latest price for this product.

The 2013 Porsche Boxter S is powered by an update 3.4-liter boxer 6-clyinder mid-engine that produces 315HP @ 6,700RPM and 360Nm torque @ 4,500-5,800RPM. This is enough to push the 1.35-ton Boxter S from 0-100kmph in just 5 seconds.

Now a lot of performance enhancements come from the improved Porsche Doppelkupplung (PDK) 7-speed gearbox that, apart from extracting improved performance from the updated engine, also allows for greater fuel efficiency. One of the features taken from the new 911 is ‘coasting’, whereby once the foot is lightly lifted off the accelerator, the Boxter S just cruises along using its inertia and using minimal engine power to keep on moving forward.

Sadly the optional extras which add almost AED 54k to the price tag include essential things like the PDK gearbox and PASM system, as well as comforts like parking sensors, Bluetooth and navigation system along with the BOSE surround sound system, among other amenities.

The Porsche Active Suspension Management system keeps the road surfaces under constant scrutiny for ideal driving. Turn off the stability control and Porsche claims you can let loose the car a little for some drifting fun. This, however, is rather tricky to engage as the extremely tight center of gravity, attributed mainly to the mid-engine layout, combined with the fat Pirelli P-Zero of 265mm tires wrapped around the 20-inch Carrera S wheels, means that the Boxter S is almost always well behaved.

It gets too serious to drive, despite the burly demeanor emanating from the body design and wild exhaust note.  Yes, the chassis is one of the most stable I have experienced, but all that precision also takes out a little bit of fun from the Boxter S. I’m obviously comparing the driving characteristics of the Boxter S to the new Toyota 86, which, while being out-muscled by the Boxter S, isn’t outclassed when it comes to pure driving pleasure. In fact, with its wide range of driving dynamics, the 86 manages to do just the opposite. Sure, you’re going to hit the limits in an 86 faster than a Boxter S, but the fun factor is just that much more.

Of course, when you floor the Boxter S the feral cry which comes from behind your head will have you grinning like a maniac, regardless of whether you’re pushing the car on tight curves or long straights; because you’ll simply forget everything and just be in the ‘zone’.

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From auditing to editing, I now test and analyze the latest gadgets and games instead of the latest financial statements. Both jobs are equally intense and rewarding. When I'm not burning up hardware in the name of science, you'll find me nuking in DOTA 2 or engineering in TF2.

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