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Old 03-18-2007, 04:31 PM   #1
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New guy here, thinking about buying a Boxster S, have some questions?

Howdy folks,

New guy here but not new to german cars since I happen to own several at this time and have always bought german cars.

I am thinking about buying a Boxster S (used, not new at this time) for my everyday commute. I do not have a long commute and I would put less then 10,000/year miles to the car at the very most.

I am looking at spending about $25,000 tops for the car.........my questions are as follow.

Are these cars reliable and everyday cars?

Is there a specific year of the model that I should stay away from?

What typical mechanical problems are typical of these cars?

What should I look for, other then making sure that i have all of the car records and history prior to purchasing the car?

Any particualar things that one should know about these type of cars?

and................tiptronic or standard transmition?

THank you very much in advance and I look forward to reading your replys.

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Old 03-18-2007, 05:18 PM   #2
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im sure people will answer a few tings, but if you just spend a few seconds with a search button you will get a lot of reading material and every one of those Qs answered.
not trying to be a ******************** or anyhting, just helping ya out
this site has a lot of good info
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Old 03-18-2007, 05:27 PM   #3
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ok, thanks!
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Old 03-18-2007, 05:34 PM   #4
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Hi Andy,

I'll take the first swing at your questions. There are many forum members who have way more technical knowledge than me, but here are my opinions:

$25K should get you into a 2001 S. May be able to find a 2002 S for that money if you aren't in a hurry. Definitely buy the S, you get an additional radiator, bigger brakes that are cross-drilled, a bigger engine / more HP, and a 6spd trans (if you go manual). BTW, look for a post by RandallNeighbor because he has a link at the bottom of his signature block to a list of 10 things you should know before you buy a Boxster. Excellent reading.

Boxsters are not Toyota reliable but they aren't constantly leaving you stranded. I use mine as a daily driver even when it snows (within reason). I think most members only drive theirs in nice weather.

Just my observation from viewing threads, but it seems the 97-99 Boxsters have the most problems. I have no statistical proof to back that statement. 2000 and newer are not immune to problems, they just seem to have fewer.

The achilies heel of the Boxster is a problem with the Rear Main Seal. RMS may cause fatal problems to your engine if it fails. Do a search on RMS to get more info. Other, less disasterous problems include window regulators failing, coolant tanks cracking, and oxygen sensors wearing out.

You will hear the term PPI (Pre-Purchase Inspection) used frequently on this forum. Have the car inspected by someone who knows Porsches and know what to look for. It will be money well spent, especially when you are looking at vehicles in the age range you are wanting to buy. If the person selling the car is against having it inspected, move on to your next candidate. Also, it is my understanding that Porsche dealerships only keep records of service done to the car at their dealership. If a car was serviced at several dealerships, you may not be able to get a complete history for it.

Rule #1 about Porsches (even Boxsters): EVERYTHING is expensive. You say you've owned only German cars but you don't mention which ones. Maybe you are already used to this rule, but you need to be aware of it. Practically every fluid in it is synthetic, which adheres to Rule #1. Tires wear out around 15K mi. 16 and 17 inch tires are reasonably priced, 18 and 19 inch tires are expensive. And the factory radio / speakers are less than perfect.

I thoroughly enjoy my 6spd. Haven't driven a tip, so I can't give you a fair response.

Finally, you will absolutely enjoy owning a Boxster. I may have sounded like I was ********************ing when responding to your questions. I just want you to enter into this with your eyes wide open. The Boxster is not perfect, but making mods to it is a lot of fun. And the sound of the exhaust, the near perfect balance and handling, and the joy of top-down motoring is intoxicating. Take your time and find the nicest Box you can afford and have fun.

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2008 Boxster S Limited Edition #005
2008 Cayman S Sport - Signal Green
1987 928 S4 - Granite Green Metallic (Felsengrun)
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Old 03-19-2007, 01:50 AM   #5
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husker gave you good starters.

adding to that, if you daily drive in traffic, consider the tip. i mainly use mine for recreation but when i run into traffic, i think tip.

get a carfax. if you've got a ppi going the extra doc couldn't hurt. the more info, the better.

talk to the seller; if he/she sounds shaky, they probably are. i talked to one lady selling her boxster and she had the gall to try to explain her way out of her boxster's salvage listing?!?!? ......her number was deleted.

if you do get it, try to keep it around 4.5k rpms. this may generate a gas mileage thread but i read a post here that changed my driving. i used to drive around 3k but the post sort of suggested there's a chance of creating carbon build up in the engine thereby causing engine failure later. looking at the torque/hp chart in the owner's manual it makes sense. the ponies are up in the 5 - 6 k range.

my problems so far:
-rear tires
-oil changes
-2 check engine lites resolving to a new cat converter(free/ warranty!!!)
-driving it too much
whenever you do get it, just enjoy it to the max!!
drive it kool

pca member

Last edited by 7th gear; 03-19-2007 at 02:00 AM.
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Old 03-19-2007, 06:05 AM   #6
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Tired of the 97-98 getting the smear campaign from other Boxster owners. My 1998 2.5 has run like a swedish sewing machine with zero problems and is faster than it's made out to be by every article written about it. It's certainly capable of getting you a speeding thread in your name I'll tell you that! All cars are only as good as the efforts the owner puts into proper maintanence.
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Old 03-19-2007, 07:27 AM   #7
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Well I bought my boxster to use as a second car / weekend car. Hated driving the mini van on weekends as my only car (mini van needed for work purposes). So I figured why not get a nice sports car for the weekends and SPECIAL DAYS. This car has honestly slowly become my everyday car, it's that great. I still don't drive it to work often, but i feel very comfortable driving it everyday. Lots of space, sometimes I even do deliveries and you can't believe how much **************** i get in the front trunk as well as the rear trunk. Althought i find that in the new porsche boxster's 987 has less room in the front trunks, the 986 is the ideal sports car.

Buy it!
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Old 03-19-2007, 03:58 PM   #8
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You can find really good advise here:


About your question about the tiptronic:
The common agreement seems to be that the Boxster does not work too well with the tiptronic (or vice versa). In my opinion: Unless I have trouble with my left foot which would not allow me to operate all three pedals why would I not want to have the fun it is to be in control of the car and have the revs exactly where I want them to?

I still wave at Boxsters, but they no longer wave back :-(
2002 Boxster S "Violet" (sold but not forgotten)
2009 Carrera 4S "Kelsey" (current ride)
2015 FIAT 500e "Nikki" my commuter car
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