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Old 12-09-2008, 12:43 AM   #1
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boxster or bmw m roadster

which would you go for... both seem to be great cars.. the bmw's don't seem to have the rms or ims problems the boxster has plus the research i did on the m roadster shows that the engines put out 250hp from their 3.2 and the later ones push out 320hp... they are actually priced nicely.... anyone on here have or have driven one??

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Old 12-09-2008, 06:10 AM   #2
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Have you driven both? For a pure sports car there is really only one thing that matters to me and that's the driving experience. In my book the Boxster wins this contest hands down.

Go drive both and then decide.
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Old 12-09-2008, 06:31 AM   #3
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This being a Boxster forum, i'll give you 3 guesses as to what we picked. (you'll only need one guess though).

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Old 12-09-2008, 07:31 AM   #4
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You chose a very partisan forum to pose your question to.

Fact is, both are nice cars...for different reasons.

The 'M' is not as bad, nor the Boxster as great, as the general response here will likely be.

As mentioned, drive them both... the right one for you will make itself clear.

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Old 12-09-2008, 07:45 AM   #5
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Beauty is, of course, in the eye of the beholder, but IMO Chris Bangle was the worst thing to happen to BMW. The Z4 was the demonstration of how ugly the guy could make a car with nice proportions. The only thing that's more of a styling travesty than the Z4 is the 7-series. Even with it's great engine and capable chassis, I couldn't stand looking at the thing every day.
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Old 12-09-2008, 07:50 AM   #6
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I drove both and thought the Boxster was a significantly more fun experience. I didn't really feel the torque in the BMW, and the cabin space in the Box is roomier, unless their newer models have changed significantly.
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Old 12-09-2008, 07:59 AM   #7
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My last time going through the selection process

I was sampling about 6 roadsters, trying to pick which one I wanted. The BMW got driven less than 2 blocks before I turned it around, just didn't have the right feel for me. The Boxster, on the other hand, was bought off the first drive.

But that is me and my biases.

Drive both, form an opinion of how you like the car to feel in your hands. Your opinion is right for you.

As for reliability issues, BMW has its share. Frequent their forums. No car is without issues.

Great time to be buying. And if you are looking at an M, then you should compare it to an S.
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Old 12-09-2008, 09:15 AM   #8
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Alas, the poor Z4 does bear an uncanny resemblance to a clown shoe. The Box, imho, has beautiful, classic lines that will endure. And it has 2 trunks.
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Old 12-09-2008, 10:10 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mikes_box
which would you go for... both seem to be great cars.. the bmw's don't seem to have the rms or ims problems the boxster has plus the research i did on the m roadster shows that the engines put out 250hp from their 3.2 and the later ones push out 320hp... they are actually priced nicely.... anyone on here have or have driven one??

Are you talking about getting the Z3 based M roadster or the Z4 M? Big difference. Definately pass on the Z3. I drove a Z3 M and it's cramped, has no trunk space and sits on an outdated chassis that doesn't handle that great. The 315 hp S54 engine was the only thing exceptional about the car. The Z4 M on the other hand is an attractive option.
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Old 12-09-2008, 12:03 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Adam
Are you talking about getting the Z3 based M roadster or the Z4 M? Big difference. Definately pass on the Z3. I drove a Z3 M and it's cramped, has no trunk space and sits on an outdated chassis that doesn't handle that great. The 315 hp S54 engine was the only thing exceptional about the car. The Z4 M on the other hand is an attractive option.
aren't opinions awesome! I laughed at this adam cause I was about to type are we talking about the ZS or Z4, cause while the Z4 is roomier, I would get the M in the Z3 cause the Z4 is the ugliest car around since the Pontiac Aztec

my borther has a Z3, he drools at my box, I used to drool over his Z3, not anymore....but drive them, answer is pretty easy
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Old 12-09-2008, 01:25 PM   #11
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Here is a "Fifth Gear" comparison of the Z4 vs. the Boxster.
Looks like they’re both having a pretty good time.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YHxDYtXOVMM
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Old 12-09-2008, 03:57 PM   #12
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Depends what model year you are comparing to.

I have owned a 2001 BMW M Coupe with the S54 engine and currently own a 2000 Boxster S .

I will compare the Z4M and not the Z3M because in my opinion between a Z3M and a 986 S the Porsche is clearly superior except when it comes to acceleration obviously.

Advantage of the Z4 M Roadster:

-engine, especially at lower RPMs. The Boxster S pulls quite nicely after 5000RPMs. But it feels a little gutless around 2000RPMs when you step on it.

The Z4 M will also easily pull on a 986 Boxster S like mine.

-Quicker steering response. Not to be confused with steering feel. In the Z4 M, the steering ratio is very short and the car responds to wheel inputs much more quickly than on the Boxster S.

-Limited Slip Differential

-Mure up to date interior with bluetooth, steering wheel controls, etc...

Advantage of the 986 Boxster S:

-better steering feel. Z4 M feels numb compared to the Porsche

-With the OEM short shift kit, the Boxster S has a much better shifting feel: tighter, crisper, shorter, not as ''rubbery'' as the BMW.

-Better brake pedal feel. The Z4's brakes feel overboosted, whereas in the Boxster S you can easily control the braking force with your right foot...

-Better clutch feel; but that's subjective. The Boxster S has a heavier clutch but in return you feel the friction point much more. In the BMW M it's pretty much like stepping on a spring with no resistance. Good in traffic though.

-More comfortable ride. The Boxster S doesn't have more body roll than the Z4 M and it has a stiffer chassis. At the same time the ride is quite comfy over bumpy roads. The Boxster S absorbs bumps and stuff very well. I guess this is due to the Mid Engine aspect of the Boxster S; since the car has better weight distribution and you sit in the middle of the car, it is not necessary to put ultra stiff shocks and springs.

-While the engine in the Z4M sounds exotic and very racy, the exhaust sounds coming out of the Boxster S with the OEM sports exhaust is pure heaven, especially after 5000RPMs. But I do love the rev-happy nature of the Z4M.



As far as handling goes, that's very subjective. Some people prefer a car like the Z4 M that is very tail happy and with which you can control you drift very easily for a long time. Some people prefer the more neutral-balanced feel of the Boxster S which doesn't let go as easily as the BMW.


As far as I'm concerned, if we were talking about the new 310HP Boxster S with a LSD it would be no contest.

Right now I'm not sure if I should keep my current Boxster S and wait a few years for the 310HP model to come down in price, or sell my current car and get a Z4 M...

Last edited by Jacques79; 12-09-2008 at 04:44 PM. Reason: add stuff
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Old 12-09-2008, 04:07 PM   #13
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I have owned both. I had 2 M roadsters one a 2000 and a 2001. Both M roadsters were built like tanks. I had not one mechanical issue with either. The gear box was a dream.. the Stability Management was not intrusive. I sometimes find the PSM a little touchy. Power was excellent and easily pulled from my current 2001 S. Brakes were very good... although advantage to the Boxster S. Open air motoring.. I prefer the Porsche.. there is not much to compare the sound of the Box with the top down and foot in the pedal. Appearance, the M roadster has a face only a mother could love. I tend to stare more at my Box in the garage than I ever did at the BMW.

One important factor, I always felt confident that the BMW wouldnt break if I pushed it. I sometimes dont push the Porsche like I did with the BMW in fear that it will push back.

This posts timing is great... I have been trolling on Cars.com looking at 2001 through 2004 BMW M3 convertibles. I am seriously considering trading the Porsche in to pick up one of those.. I have seen at least a dozen low mileage cars with great options for 22 to 27k. I fell in love with the new M3 the first time I drove it at a Susan G. Komen drive. I am seduced by the power. I think at this point, I would move into the M3 ahead of a 996. We will see...

Anyway, I have no opinion on the new M roadster... I am not thrilled with the Z4 as a whole. I felt it didnt have that purest feel that I experienced in the M roadster.

Either car would be great!!

Best of luck!
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Old 12-13-2008, 04:08 PM   #14
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I have also owned both. Both are great cars, but they each have their own personality. The porsche is a more refined car and I find the quality of workmanship to be a little more solid. It holds well to the road and handles corners very tight without alot of sway. Both have a good performance engine. The Porsche is a more expensive vehicle to maintain. I found the Z4 to be more of an entry level roadster, while the Boxster seemed to be one step up (probably will go for 911 in a few years).

You need to test drive each car. You can't go wrong with either. I still have my Boxster S.

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Old 12-14-2008, 05:14 PM   #15
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Here is the Top Gear episode with Richard Hammond comparing the Z4 M to Boxster S.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4E2ooCkW4jI


Quote:
Originally Posted by Aron in Toronto
Here is a "Fifth Gear" comparison of the Z4 vs. the Boxster.
Looks like they’re both having a pretty good time.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YHxDYtXOVMM
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Old 12-14-2008, 06:22 PM   #16
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1) No way is it better looking than the Box
b) call me a wuss, but I think I'd rather go around the corner with my ass end firmly planted than sliding, squealing, and "thrilling" me.

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