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Old 08-23-2012, 09:16 AM   #1
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Thinking of getting a 911 and selling the box...

I'm torn, I love my 2000 Boxster. I had it for almost 6 years... but my dream has always been a 911. I'm seeing 2000-2003 911's in the low $20k area.
What do you guys think?
I dont worry about the IMS, but I know thats an issue with the 911's too. My Boxster has been perfect for 72k miles so far! Part of me wants to keep it... but it's kind of now or never on the 911...
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Old 08-23-2012, 09:29 AM   #2
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I'm torn, I love my 2000 Boxster. I had it for almost 6 years... but my dream has always been a 911. I'm seeing 2000-2003 911's in the low $20k area.
What do you guys think?
I dont worry about the IMS, but I know thats an issue with the 911's too. My Boxster has been perfect for 72k miles so far! Part of me wants to keep it... but it's kind of now or never on the 911...
Why is it now or never? I too am contemplating a 996; 2002 Cab C4 W 37,000. I do not expect these cars to appreciate in value and I don't think they've hit bottom. They have all of the same weaknesses as the 986, but the engines are even pricier to replace. That being said, if you think your base is fun to drive, you will enjoy the significant extra go. The 02 Cab C4 I drove is not that much quicker than my 2002 986 S and the box handles better by measurable margin.


There will still be plenty of 996s on the market when you're ready.
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Old 08-23-2012, 09:51 AM   #3
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My thinking as far as "now or never" is based on getting a 911 with enough time to pay it off before my kids go to college. I still have time though, they are in grade school still, but time will go by quickly. I'm giving myself a year to decide I take a long time buying cars... I like to be comfortable with my purchase. I don't think 911's have bottomed out $ either, so taking my time will only benefit me I think!
My reasoning for wanting the 911 is purely styling! I've always loved the designs of the 911 the most! Performance is secondary really
I would only have one requirement... Proof of an ims upgrade! That means my options will be slim... Less I do it myself. Not sure I want to do that right off the bat when I purchase!
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Old 08-23-2012, 09:55 AM   #4
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I'd like a 911. But to tell you the truth over the years the thought of driving a rear-engined car and losing a mid-engine one has pushed me to put off the switch year after year.

Now I'm at that point that I would just prefer for the MY 2009-2011 997's (no IMS issues) to come down in price. From what the track guys say the 997.2 Carreras are a massive improvement over the whole 996 range. I also found it interesting that Walter Rohrl's "best 911's" list failed to include a single 996. That's quiet a long stretch of Carreras to snub entirely.

my thinking now is to go water-cooled (but not 993, too mushy for me) or 997. Anything in between (GT/2/3 and TT's excluded of course) I would see as a lateral move on handling, power and reliability from a Boxster S.
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Old 08-23-2012, 10:19 AM   #5
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I love the 993's as well... But yes, too much $$! And the newer improved 997's without the ims issue (didn't the eliminate it?) are still way up in price... If I were to buy in the near future it would have to be a 996... Although I would entertain an 84-87 ish! But most of those are $20+ now anyway!
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Old 08-23-2012, 10:34 AM   #6
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on second thought I would rather wait for a Boxster Spyder to come down in price than wait for a 997 to come down. Hopefully someone will come up with an aftermarket solution to that ridiculuously impractical top. Meanwhile, You have your whole life to drive a bloated rear-engined car.

I could see owning an 87 911 for a year. But I know myself to well. I have a hard time selling something that is working well. Your luck is bound to run out sooner or later if you keep switching cars.
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Old 08-23-2012, 10:41 AM   #7
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The top is fine, it only takes a few times to perfect it.
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Old 08-23-2012, 11:05 AM   #8
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There is a 2000 911 Carrera Base manual transmission Lapis Blue w/tan leather interior for sale for $13,000 with 126,000 miles in Philadelphia. But it needs a new engine. Other than that, everything else is in great condition. Very clean car.
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Old 08-23-2012, 11:22 AM   #9
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I have both, a 996 C4 and an 04 and an 08 boxster S. The only time the C4 gets driven is in winter because I like the way the boxsters handle better.
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Old 08-23-2012, 11:30 AM   #10
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The top is fine, it only takes a few times to perfect it.
but how many times can you do this a day? and doesn't it sound like you're in cargo plane when you hit the highway?

I get desire to want to cut weight, but surely a manually operated Miata style top with ultra light materials on a silky smooth ball bearing track could have been designed.
I thought Germans were all about simplfying functionality. That's a head-scratcher.
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Old 08-23-2012, 11:47 AM   #11
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If you prefer the appearance etc. of the 996 then you should go for one. Personally, I prefer the looks of the 986 Boxster to the 996 and, since I prefer having a roadster over a hardtop (for what is essentially a summer car in my climate), I consider the difference in appearance even greater - i.e., IMO the 996, while uninspired and even dull compared to the 986, at least looks more balanced than the 996 Cab.

I also prefer the inherent handling balance in the 986 over the 996. Yes, while there is no question that Porsche had by the 996 made great strides towards overcoming the inherent problems associated with having the engine in the rear - i.e., poor weight distribution at the limit, nevertheless there is a reason that all pure race cars are now mid, rather than rear engined.

Interiors? Since the dash/interior facia layout in the 986 is, apart from the two additional gauges, identical to the 996, it is not as if one is getting vastly superior quality or ergonomics with the increased price tag.

Reliability, or the lack thereof? Again, no appreciable difference (and sadly, as you point out, both can fall prey to the dreaded IMS bearing failure). Mileage? When I was looking for my Boxster, I noticed that most 996's had higher mileage than the 986's of the same vintage. It may be that due to the hard-top, more 996's are used as year-round daily drivers. This, of course, may not be the case in areas such as Southern Florida, New Mexico, Utah and Southern Cal.

Performance? To me, a sports car is all about handling, braking, toss-ability and responsiveness. Top-down motoring is a real plus (having owned both roadsters and hardtop sports cars in the past). And IMO while acceleration and top speed are nice, they are nowhere near as important in a sports car as they are for the owners of muscle cars. Frankly, my 2000 2.7 has more than enough power to get me into trouble, if I am foolish, and can exceed our legal top speed of 100 kph in second gear The power/top speed and acceleration are also significantly better than in my previous sports cars: a 1970 Fiat 850 Spider, a 1962 Porsche 356 B Normal, a 1974 Fiat X/19, a 1974 Datsun 260 Z (euro spec), and a 1986 Porsche 944 (all before taking a hiatus from sports cars due to a child).

What about engine sounds - the incredible aural contribution that they can make to the experience of driving a sports car? Frankly, from the driver's seat with the driver's window down, the sounds through the air-intake in the flanks near the driver's ear of the 986 are much nicer than the sounds one gets driving a 996 with the driver's window down (I will confess, I have not driven a 996 Cab with the top down). Both make superbly sweet sounds as they accelerate up through the rev range, but in my experience, the sounds are just a little more accessible in the 986 Boxster.

Is the 986 as much of a status symbol as a 996 (or any 911, for that matter)? No, although that is of no importance to me. It certainly out-performs, in every respect, the non-turbocharged 911's prior to the 993. Will the 986 have the same kind of resale value down the road as a 911, even those with less performance? Undoubtedly not. Although it is my expectation that they will be significantly less expensive to keep on the road, even in the case of serious damage: due to larger production numbers and a greater tendancy to scrap them, used doors, trunk lids, fenders, interior components etc. should be not only readily available for years to come, but cheaper. So too various components such as the transaxle (from VW), or even used engines (since there are many more 986's than 996's on the road and both are subject to IMS failure, etc., there are bound to be more used engines available as well).

For some the styling of the 911 - any 911, creates an emotional response that no other car can replicate. If you are one of those people, then obviously there is no substitute - regardless of cost. For the rest of us, there is a great deal to commend the 986 over the 996.

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Old 08-23-2012, 11:59 AM   #12
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Brad, you make some great points! I guess I owe it to myself, before upgrading, to at least test drive a 987! Or wait 4 more years for the non-ims p-car!
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Old 08-23-2012, 12:12 PM   #13
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Are you involved wit the local Porsche Club?
You might find someone there willing to swap cars with you for a driving tour. That'd be a nice way to experience the 996 drive and make the comparison.
The PCA is also a great source of above-average-kept cars for sale (though the prices often reflect this)
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Old 08-23-2012, 12:29 PM   #14
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I'm not an active PCA member, but I do attend some of their track days locally and know a couple members! That is definitely a great source!
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Old 08-23-2012, 01:04 PM   #15
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Obviously the grass is looking greener on the other side of the fence for you so you'd better take a test drive before you switch to a 911.

Go to the 911 forums and search for Boxsters.

You will find that some folks regret switching and if they had taken a test drive first they would not have sold their Boxster.

Also google 911 spins on youtube if you care about ever pushing the 911 to its limits on the road or track.

In the end its about what you like, but going in informed will avoid regrets and surprises later on.
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Old 08-23-2012, 03:58 PM   #16
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but how many times can you do this a day? and doesn't it sound like you're in cargo plane when you hit the highway?

I get desire to want to cut weight, but surely a manually operated Miata style top with ultra light materials on a silky smooth ball bearing track could have been designed.
I thought Germans were all about simplfying functionality. That's a head-scratcher.

It will end up bothering you about as much as an audible burp from a smokin hot woman, the rest of the car will make you forget about the top.
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Old 08-23-2012, 04:23 PM   #17
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If you were Jay Leno you would have a collection. That is encouraged if you can afford it. Lots of good suggestions here. You don't know what u have got till it is gone. Old air cooled 911 fun, early water cooled 911 no soul and truck like compared to the Boxster. Boxster is small, good a/c, cheaper to run than a 911. Talk to me in another 5 years and I may have a.......?
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Old 08-23-2012, 05:28 PM   #18
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Buy a 996 TT and keep the Boxster. That said I prefer my 3.6 Boxster over my TT on twisty back roads.
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Old 08-23-2012, 06:30 PM   #19
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I'm considering keeping the Boxster and getting an older 911 (or highe mileage 996) That would be the best of both worlds! I only have a three car garage though, so if I go that route my daily driver (Audi A4) will have to sit in the drive all winter my wifes Audi A4 would take the third spot in the garage so that's something to think about too!
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Old 08-23-2012, 07:33 PM   #20
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Buy a 996 TT and keep the Boxster. That said I prefer my 3.6 Boxster over my TT on twisty back roads.
I'm torn between a 997 S and a 996 TT.

The IMS is not an issue with the TT but a small concern with the 997 S.

I test drove a 2002 TT and was grinning for the rest of the day. Now I need to test drive a 997 S.
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