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Old 12-17-2012, 04:40 PM   #1
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Help me choose a Boxster - which would you choose?

So I'm in the process of choosing a Boxster. I want something clean, and in good shape. I've almost bought 1-2 but they fell through.

Here are my options, all manual of course:

1.) 2001 Boxster with 54,000 miles. It's in great shape, but the back plastic window has a 1 inch gash on it. Can that be stitched up or repaired, or do I have to replace the plastic?

Asking price is about $13,300.

2.) Boxster S 2001, with 85k miles. Also in good condition, asking price $13,000. Only issue is that it's about 300 miles away from me. It has more miles than the other Boxster, but it is an S.

Any idea if its worth it to go 300 miles and get the S, or is the lower mileage on the other base one best?

I guess biggest question: The low miles Boxster has only 54k, but does this mean it could be more susceptible to the IMS or other engine failures? While the other Boxster is up to 85k already.


Responses appreciated!

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Old 12-17-2012, 04:53 PM   #2
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IMHO, get a PPI on each of them and the answer may be easier.
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Old 12-17-2012, 06:06 PM   #3
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Have you driven a base and an S? That may help you answer your question. Some people are OK with a base with less HP, some people aren't. If you buy a base, you're pretty much stuck with that HP. You won't be able to reasonably bump the HP with garden variety mods. There are loads of threads from owners who buy a base and then are disappointed with the power and think it's a small block Chevy that will open up with a set of headers and free flowing exhaust. Not happenin here. You can spend $5K in mods and pick up 20 HP tops. It's cheaper to buy an S. IIRC, an 01 base has 210 HP while the S has 245. There is a difference.
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Old 12-17-2012, 08:03 PM   #4
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IMS failure is unpredictable. Either car could have an immediate failure or either car could go to 200,000 miles trouble free. No way to know.

Rear plastic window will have to be replaced. $250-$400.

The miles difference between the two cars isn't huge, so I'd recommend driving the base and drive the S to see which model you like best. Then get a PPI on the car that you like best and go from there.
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Old 12-17-2012, 08:50 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by rondocap View Post
1.) 2001 boxster with 54,000 miles. It's in great shape, but the back plastic window has a 1 inch gash on it.
typical for a car of this age in the northeast. Close your top when its below 50 and you get a crack.



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Originally Posted by rondocap View Post
2.) boxster s 2001, with 85k miles. Only issue is that it's about 300 miles away from me.
distance is a show stopper. You can't get a proper ppi.
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Old 12-17-2012, 09:35 PM   #6
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typical for a car of this age in the northeast. Close your top when its below 50 and you get a crack.
I use my [plastic windowed] top all the time in the low 40s...it's a non issue for me.
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Old 12-18-2012, 04:20 AM   #7
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Keep looking. On into winter there will be lots of deals jump up. Hold out for an S with a glass back window and lower milage. They are out there, even if you have to pay more. If you don't need or want the extra HP it will sell better when you get rid of it.
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Old 12-18-2012, 05:38 AM   #8
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I use my [plastic windowed] top all the time in the low 40s...it's a non issue for me.
Agreed. Me too. Just gotta remember to do the "chop" so the vinyl doesn't form sharp points as it folds in on itself.
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Old 12-18-2012, 06:57 AM   #9
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If you buy an S you will never have S envy and certainly will not regret it when its time to sell.

The 3.2L engine is also more robust in that it has thicker cylinders from what I have read. The newer generation engine just seems to fair better overall.

Of course its essential that you get a PPI to avoid any surprises and the cost of the PPI can be recovered by negotiating the results to adjust the buying price.

The IMS problem effect 5% of the cars so if there is any oil leaks at all for any reason I'd go find another.

Be Patient as there are plenty of Boxsters out there and coming up for sale constantly so hold out for mileage, condition and your color preferences.
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Old 12-18-2012, 08:48 AM   #10
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Be Patient as there are plenty of Boxsters out there and coming up for sale constantly so hold out for mileage, condition and your color preferences.
This. It really is a buyers market. $13K is too much for the base Boxster with a cracked rear window. I just bought, last month, a 2001 base for $12,5K in excellent condition, with records. I'm pleased with the all around performace of the base Boxster. Not saying you would not like/want and S, but the base has plenty of performance at 217 HP.
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Old 12-18-2012, 09:34 AM   #11
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No base units, you want like them. S has the 3.2 liter with 255HP engine. I prefer the TIP, you get both of both worlds...auto to manual. I am thinking about selling mine. Go here to review if interested.

http://986forum.com/forums/boxsters-sale-wanted/37720-boxster-2000s.html
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Old 12-18-2012, 10:08 AM   #12
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at this weight imho a roadster greatly benefits from at least 240 HP. Less and you have to do a lot more of the work. More than about 300 HP and the car gets a little to easy to drive.
The extra power makes the platform come alive off braking and out of slow turns. There's an extra kick there that changes the experience. In real world settings the extra power is very very nice when highway merging or passing someone who is hogging up the fast lane. Standard commutter sedans have a lot more power these days. An accord V6 has as much power as a late 90's BMW M3.

As for the cars your considering. Keep looking. Ideally you want a car that is NOT close to home. One that is kept in year round warm weather. And one that is driven frequently but not far.
A cold weather car with mileage over 70-80K better have some major maintenace work done already like shocks, clutch/ims/rms. Otherwise you'll be paying for that and those repairs can easily run $5K. Winter-driven cars just take a much harder beating thus require much more work by the original owner if they are considered to be a good deal. Case in point I often hear of Southern California cars with mileage over 100K that barely need any work.
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Old 12-18-2012, 07:17 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Perfectlap View Post
at this weight imho a roadster greatly benefits from at least 240 HP. Less and you have to do a lot more of the work. More than about 300 HP and the car gets a little to easy to drive.
The extra power makes the platform come alive off braking and out of slow turns. There's an extra kick there that changes the experience. In real world settings the extra power is very very nice when highway merging or passing someone who is hogging up the fast lane. Standard commutter sedans have a lot more power these days. An accord V6 has as much power as a late 90's BMW M3.

As for the cars your considering. Keep looking. Ideally you want a car that is NOT close to home. One that is kept in year round warm weather. And one that is driven frequently but not far.
A cold weather car with mileage over 70-80K better have some major maintenace work done already like shocks, clutch/ims/rms. Otherwise you'll be paying for that and those repairs can easily run $5K. Winter-driven cars just take a much harder beating thus require much more work by the original owner if they are considered to be a good deal. Case in point I often hear of Southern California cars with mileage over 100K that barely need any work.
+++1

Rondocap -
Have you also watched the classifieds on this forum for a while. Members do sell their cars and often they are some of the best kept cars out there. I think of the thousands I put into my car and it is almost bullet proof but we can't get our money back since folks really aren't willing to pay too much more for that type of care...you however will benefit. Some are even sold after replacement IMS bearings are installed.
Good luck!
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Old 12-18-2012, 07:32 PM   #14
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I actually ended up getting the 2001 with 54k miles, manual. I was able to get them to discount the price a bit.

The car is really in amazing condition, the only issue is that back window, but that's normal.

Drives great - although the rollover bar is rattling a bit as well.
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Old 12-18-2012, 07:57 PM   #15
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need pictures !
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Old 12-19-2012, 06:19 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Chuck W. View Post
IMHO, get a PPI on each of them and the answer may be easier.
I agree'

I bought a 2000S a year ago, it had 65K miles on it, 2 owners- first put 30k on it in 2 years, next one 35k in 10 years. looked like new. - owner was 6 hours away from me, I had PPI done at local independant place in Birminham AL, then reviewed all maintainence records, - owner agreed to meet half way, i brought funds with, after a test drive i bought it and brought it home!
- also i purchased it for about 3k less than asking price(-pd 12k) - i looked at 5, had 2 other ppi's done cost about $100 each but worth spending to save other problems. you can arrange this from a distance, - find your car, i know guys that have flown and drove home to get the car they want.

but 300 miles is what, a 5 hour drive? no big deal- you could even go be there at the PPI.

good luck! let us know how that works out.

pw.

- just read the whole thread saw you bought - good luck , probably a good choice- let us know how that works

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Old 12-19-2012, 06:31 AM   #17
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I'm loving it so far - everything about this car is a special event. Walking up to it, turning it on, and that engine!

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Old 12-19-2012, 07:18 AM   #18
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Hey looks great - Love that Blue with the dark roof (just like mine)
You say the rollover bar rattles? you sure its not the plastic trim on it thats lose
somewhere... might want to go for a ride and have a passenger put pressure
on a few spots to see if it goes away before that drives you nuts :-)
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Old 12-19-2012, 07:18 AM   #19
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although the rollover bar is rattling a bit as well.
Probably the plastic wind deflector. Remove for winter.




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Old 12-19-2012, 07:32 AM   #20
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Rules i've learned here:

1) Washiing and waxing strokes in the direction of the airflow....no circular wiping please. Never take it through ANY kind of automatic car wash...hand wash only!

2) Regular Oil changes and examine the oil/filter for ferrous particles with a magnet or even send it in for analysis if you suspect something.

3) Drive it regularly to keep it working properly and for the sheer enjoyment. No garage queens please, we want to pull up next to you on the road, admire your car and flash a thumbs up.

Highly Recommended:

1) Take the car to a PCA Performance Driving School, you will be amazed at how you can learn to handle your own car in adverse conditions and when you want to go racing to be confident to ride it right to the edge of its performance envelope.

1b) Do one Auto-X just for fun, its highly addictive, lots of fun, you will make new friends and have an even bigger smile than you have already. Its competitive for standard stock cars as well, nothing extra required. Get the full Porsche experience! Our San Diego meets typically have over 90 Porsches, lots of pretty cars and excitement and you'll love all those engine sounds.

2) Learn to wrench on your own car. Many things are easy like Oil Changes, Brake Fluid Flushing, Brake Pads, Rotors, Serpentine Belt. Plus, you will save a bundle over taking it to a Porsche dealer for service and none of these things take more than an hour.

3) Take pictures and post them here, we love looking at Porsches.

Congratulations and enjoy!

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