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Old 04-05-2009, 06:52 AM   #1
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Teen Driver and Boxster

Does anyone have any wisdom to share about letting their teenager drive their Boxster?

My initial thinking on it is "no way" - the insurance rates would probably be astronomical. Also, I looked forward to buying my first Porsche since I was a teenager and the reward was that much sweeter for all the years of waiting.

After some reflection, I can see some arguments in favor of a teen driver. (1) For a relatively small car, the Boxster seems extremely safe from both design and handling/braking perspectives. (2) It would be less expensive - on a replacement cost basis - than buying a new economy car. (3) Why not let them have fun while they are young?

Still, it does seem kind of insane to let a teenager drive a car that can reach over 140 mph.

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Old 04-05-2009, 07:12 AM   #2
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This is what happens when you let teenagers drive a Porsche.

http://www.autoblog.com/tag/circuit+city+porsche+damage/

Ok ok I admit I did some stupid things too when I was in my teens, but nothing this bad.
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Old 04-05-2009, 07:12 AM   #3
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While you sound like a cool parent, it sounds like a bad idea to me.
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Old 04-05-2009, 07:17 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KevinH1990
Does anyone have any wisdom to share about letting their teenager drive their Boxster?

My initial thinking on it is "no way" - the insurance rates would probably be astronomical. Also, I looked forward to buying my first Porsche since I was a teenager and the reward was that much sweeter for all the years of waiting.

After some reflection, I can see some arguments in favor of a teen driver. (1) For a relatively small car, the Boxster seems extremely safe from both design and handling/braking perspectives. (2) It would be less expensive - on a replacement cost basis - than buying a new economy car. (3) Why not let them have fun while they are young?

Still, it does seem kind of insane to let a teenager drive a car that can reach over 140 mph.
Yeah, it's not a great idea. They are great handling cars, but they do bite. Much harder than a Tercel or Corolla. Kids are kids, a kid with a Porsche is going to test it's and his limits, no matter how responsible.

I grew up with sports cars, my first car was a Mazda Rx-7 at 16 1/2 and my dad let me drive his MR2 Turbo every once in a while at the same time. I was a good student and a responsible kid, but looking back, I'm pretty lucky I didn't kill myself or someone else.

That's not to say the kid should never drive the car. If you're shotgun, it will be a good learning experience for him/her. Some DE time would also be a really good idea. But if you're talking about handing the keys over, I'd be wary as a parent and upset as a driver sharing the road with that kid.
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Old 04-05-2009, 07:36 AM   #5
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I really don't think we can help you with this decision since we don't know the kid. All kids have tendancies to do certain things when the parents aren't around but all kids are different.

I just bought my first Porsche and I plan on it being the vehicle my kids learn to drive in and I anticipate giving it to the oldest at that time and replacing it with a newer model for myself.

Base your decision upon your kid, you either trust them or you don't. They have given you reason to trust them or they haven't.

Best of luck either way.
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Old 04-05-2009, 08:46 AM   #6
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Well, speaking from my experiences as a teenager, here's the important things to remember about male teens, and driving cars:

They will always test out the top speed limits of the car, at least once a month, if not every time they get behind the wheel. I know I did in my '81 Pontiac Grand Prix. I'm just glad it had the Buick 231 V-6, and not either the Pontiac 301 V-8, or the Chevy 305 V-8.

They will test out the handling if there is even a single twisty road to drive on nearby.
This means pushing the car harder and harder around the corners until they lose control.
Boxster's don't suffer fools at the wheel, and this could lead to a very bad thing.
I grew up in NYC, and with the GP, there really wasn't anyplace I could go fast enough to lose control of that car, without either really trying, or just plain doing something completely stupid.

Next up are friends, and that's going to be the worst factor that you won't have ANY control over. Everyone has that one friend, that can push your kid's buttons at just the wrong times, and convince your kid that doing something truly stupid right now is the best thing in the world. Or better yet, he will let that moron friend drive the car, and that's when BSHs (Bad S*** Happens). You won't ever be able to prevent this from happening. It will happen.

The truly best thing you can do is this:

Go driving with your kid every weekend.
Spend a couple hours out on the road with him, and swap seats several times during the drive.
Find some great roads to go play on, make sure you do a couple passes in both directions in order to make sure the road is clean and safe, and have some fun, wringing the car out a bit.

If you and your son can bond together over the car, then he will respect you and the car that much more, and will most likely do less stupid stuff if you give him the car on his own.

Oh, and get him a good radar detector.
At least let him learn that there is a time and place for speeding, and that he should learn where the hot spots are fairly safely, and early on.

BC.
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Old 04-05-2009, 09:27 AM   #7
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I got my 944 when I was 16. I had driven a toyota for less than a year at that point including permit time. With the 944 my parents told me that I was responsible for maintenance and repairs. Also if I got a single speeding ticket, they would take the keys away permanently.

7 years later I still have the 944 with 100K miles more on the odo as well as a boxster. But I was always a good kid though. People have handed me keys to really nice cars for as long as I can remember, and I have never let them down.

But then again, I never let just anyone drive my cars.... and yesterday was the first time I let one of my cars (the boxster) out of my sight in the hands of another.

So it depends on the kid's personality, but instilling some responsibility along with the privilege might help if you think he/she is mature and responsible enough not to do something TOOOO stupid. Oh and learning how to drive at driving schools/HPDE/Auto-x is also really good at a young age.
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Old 04-05-2009, 09:44 AM   #8
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We dont know anything about your teen and how responsible they are, but I can say this, I was raised in a great home, with loving parents who are still together after 49 years and even though I was very responsible growing up, I still remember my friend and I (17 years old) pushing his moms Honda Prelude to 138 mph. If we had access to a Porsche, I'm sure we would have tried to push it to its limits and probably killed ourselves or others. My two cents, their too young to drive a car with that much speed by himself or with a friend. But it would be great fun for a father and son to take turns at the wheel together!


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Old 04-05-2009, 10:51 AM   #9
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If I had a kid, I'd do what my father did with me.

The weekend of my 16th b'day, I got my license...and... my dad brought me, along with his 356 to an auto-x.

Learning the limits of the car, as well as my own, in a controlled environment, really taught me to play nice on the street.

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Old 04-05-2009, 11:03 AM   #10
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Well, for one, my father never had a Porsche. If he did, I doubt I would have been allowed to drive it. Lets face it, at 16 we were idiots behind the wheel. Totally indestructable and fearless. Only with age have we accumulated wisdom and tolerance.... and economic means to afford our toys.

Besides, I think if my Dad saw the way I drive my Boxster, he would take away my keys.... and I'm 43.
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Old 04-05-2009, 11:49 AM   #11
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My dad is crazy behind the wheel, he's worse than most 16 year old's. I think that's why I was more responsible, when we rode with him we all thought we were going to die.

it also helps to have a slower car, like the 944. With 130hp I got it up to 130 once... and that took miles and miles. After 100 drag took over and it didn't want to go any faster. Maybe we should have restored the 356 super-90.

Sleeved to 1790cc it might have been as fast as the 944 with crappier brakes and 4" tires.... second thought that might not have been so good.
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Old 04-05-2009, 03:13 PM   #12
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I am letting my son, now 16, learn to drive the Boxster. The pounding the clutch is taking is probably going to mean a new clutch a little sooner......but that is also part of the master plan....

I will than go to my wife and say...wow! our son toasted the clutch and now I need a new one. That means LWFW, Spec I or II Clutch, RMS and IMS updates.

Oh, and when he gets proficient enough, we are going to do a DE together.
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Old 04-05-2009, 03:23 PM   #13
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I had a 944 when I was 16. I treated that car like gold, but I also bought it myself with a loan from my grandmother and had to work to pay it back so I knew the value of it. I also had to pay all the repairs, etc. I think it depends on the kid. Some would tear it up like my friend who used to have a BMW and ruined the transmission because he was listening to classical music on the highway and at a certain point in the music he'd shift from high gear all the way into 1st or 2nd to make the car go "wheeeeee" with the music.
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Old 04-05-2009, 08:26 PM   #14
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I think some of you guys are being a bit stereotypical. While most teens would probably go nuts if they drove a Porsche, there are a few that would respect what it is, and treat it perfectly. Although I think a defensive driving class would be appropriate as well.

And the concern over a fast performance far for a teen is unwarranted in my opinion. Teens can make stupid decisions liking pulling out in front of someone at a bad moment, but if you have the HP, you can speed up and avoid an accident. Having an agile and fast car is a great thing if you happen to make a mistake.
Just my opinion!
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Old 04-05-2009, 09:12 PM   #15
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I don't think that most teenagers (including me when I was a kid) realize how a reckless driving conviction or (god forbid) a serious accident can affect the future. The Boxster is a serious machine to put in the hands of a teenager. It's also an attention magnet for other kids who will all want to race "that kid with the Porsche."

My first car was a Mazda B2000 pickup, which accelerated too slowly for me to successfully kill myself and was too underpowered to break the rear wheels loose. The Boxster, on the other hand, can be a dicey car for a skilled driver when thrown into a corner under throttle...

IMO, a 4-cylinder FWD econoimport is a much better choice than a RWD sports car for a newer driver. I've been licensed for 23 years and am fully aware that my Boxster is more capable than I am... when I was 16 I would have had no such understanding.

Consider it this way: Are there other temptations would you not present a young adult with? Even the most well-intentioned kid will make poor decisions from time to time - that's part of getting older. However, keeping the kid out of situations that may tempt him to make decisions that may have lasting consequences is your job as a parent.

You can always garage the Boxster for a few years. It would make a ********************in' graduation present from high school or college...

P.S. Rather than buying a new economy car, pick up a used Hyundai Elantra or Accent with a few years of warranty left. They're reliable, incredibly cheap, and safe.

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Old 04-05-2009, 11:03 PM   #16
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Wow, Im sorry but I must jump in here... wow there seems to be soooo much negativity towards a teen and a porsche.

Let me get this out there: I OWN A 1997 BOXSTER.. I TURN 19 THIS WED. APRIL 8th.
IVE HAD THE CAR SINCE I TURNED 16!!!

So speaking from this experience, I know what its like to be a teen with a Porsche.
I believe it is the best decision I ever made.

When some of you say youre afraid of letting them get behind the wheel of a 200hp sports car.. where I have friends behind the wheel of a 6.0 05 Pontica GTO, or a BMW 550I, hell some even have Subaru STIs and Imprezas.

Talk about 350hp, 400hp, and some of the modded STIs over 600 and 700...


As we get older, we tend to become more conservative and stereotype more often. I have 40 year old family members that drive more reckless than I do. Just because your older doesnt mean anything. Albeit a teen driver is less experienced, but learning to drive the boxster and especially driving for my first winter driving here in Chicago on it.. whew.. talk about a fast driving education.

Its my personal opinion as a teen that it's 100% ok to have one and personally, it has a lot more perks than any other "teen" car. On that note, what is a "teen" car? Is that not a stereotype? Is a Minivan a "soccer moms car"? If you all know who Dwayne Johnson is. .... ( The Rock) .. He drives a red Mini Van. I see men driving VW Beatles.. a "chick car" ... So who is to say what car a teen should and should not have??? There are two ways of looking at the matter, the practicality and the enjoyment. Some people just want a car that will get them from Point A to Point B. Others believe a car should be chosen because they ENJOY IT .. To ENJOY the TIME BETWEEN Point A and Point B.

I feel somewhat ashamed and disappointed to see all the closed mindedness and negativity on this forum. "Porsche, there is no substitute."

WHO ARE YOU TO JUDGE SOMEONE ELSE? WHAT GIVES YOU THE RIGHT?

Just my .02 , Sorry if I offended anyone. It isnt intention to do so. I just speak my mind and the truth as I see it.

Adam

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Old 04-06-2009, 12:12 AM   #17
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Mostly how I feel has been covered with prior posts. Teen responsibility runs all over the place, but I think that in most cases (especially with males) a sports car at 16 is a bad idea. Not just because of the temptation to drive fast / aggressively, but mainly because of plain old inexperience. When you up the ante by introducing a sports car with higher power and handling limits, you also up the ramifications for mistakes. Also remember that you as a parent could be held responsible for your kid's driving mishaps, especially if the car is in your name. I drive a newer GTO as a daily driver, it is my second one. About a year and a half back a 16 year old pulled directly out in front of me while on his cell phone, I had nowhere to go but directly into the side of his parents newer Explorer. Luckily noone got hurt, after talking to him I got the impression he was a pretty good kid, just wasn't thinking for a split second and the end result was 2 totalled cars. He had his license for all of 4 days.


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Old 04-06-2009, 02:40 AM   #18
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If I were to allow a teenager to drive my car:

First, I would pull out the radio,
Second, I would turn off their cell phone.

That would remove two of the biggest distractions for modern teens.
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Old 04-06-2009, 04:58 AM   #19
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If I wanted to kill my teenage son, I would give him any fast car. If I wanted to spend tens of thousands of dollars in the body shop I would give my teenage daughter an expensive car.

Teenage drivers should be given safe but cheap used cars. Period. They will wreck or beat up anything you give them so give them something that's safe and cheap.

Giving a teenager a Porsche is like giving psychotic a bottle of Quaaludes, a bag of pot and an Uzi.
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Old 04-06-2009, 06:37 AM   #20
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Thanks for sharing your views. I have a year and and a half to think this over.

My brother buys Mercury Grand Marquis's for his boys. They hate driving them, but they are all still alive.

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