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Old 06-09-2014, 06:49 PM   #1
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2008 Boxster S vs Base

I have wanted a Boxster for ever and have been looking and test driving 2008's for the past week. Can anyone help me with making the decision of an S vs the base model. Base seems to be about $3000 to $4000 less. I know the S has a bigger engine but is there something else I'm missing? Or will I have as much fun in either.

Thanks

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Old 06-09-2014, 07:32 PM   #2
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The S has more grunt in the low end. That's the most obvious thing about daily driving. I don't track either of my cars...so someone else needs to fill that in. From 4K+ I really can't tell much difference between my S and Base. I recently test drove an '06 CS, and '12 CR. The '06 CS was nice but nothing I would miss. The '12 CR was fantastic. A very very nice and fast car. Both my cars felt slow and heavy compared to the '12 CR.

If you can afford it....get the S. But, you'll have 98% of the same fun in the Base...so don't stress to much. Buy the nicer (condition/service records etc etc) car overall.
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Old 06-09-2014, 08:00 PM   #3
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there is a significant difference between the models not just the motor , which is worth the 3 to 4 grand alone . The S has way better brakes , 6 speed , upgraded suspension and are usually better optioned . 07 , 08 have the 3.4 which makes it the best performer of the mk1 987 cars. if you are going to do a base model go 09 or newer your just a hair below that price range anyway .
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Old 06-09-2014, 08:32 PM   #4
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And don't think you can buy a base and then mod it to open up the HP. These are not small block Chevies. Pretty much what you buy is what you get. If you're satisfied with the performance of the base, then fine. If you think you can buy a base and add headers, mufflers, intake plenums, etc and match an S, you'll easily spend $3-4K and gain maybe 15HP. You'll still be short of an S and spent the money to buy one.
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Old 06-10-2014, 07:20 AM   #5
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Keep saving for a 2009S. That puts you at the lowest entry cost for the 2nd newest generation of S model Boxsters.

Or if you plan to put lots of miles on the car, get a 986S with low miles (30-50K) and serviceable IMS bearing (2000-2004).
But if you plan to run it only a couple of times a month then all S model years should be fine.

S model cars have better resale and the extra oomph is very handy for highway merging and passing. These days regular cars have a lot more power and their drivers are a lot less civil then in the past. Some people say that motorists sometimes see a Porsche and want to try block it from passing or merging in front of them because they have some point to prove. Maybe they do that to all cars now, who knows.
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Old 06-10-2014, 12:44 PM   #6
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It always makes me wonder why they officially call it a 'Base'. Sorta like calling it 'Entry Level' or 'Bottom' or something. Maybe it was just lost in translation... But a good lesson in Marketing 101: Think thru your name.

I'm so glad I don't hang around with my buds and have to tell them I drive a Base...
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Old 06-10-2014, 01:15 PM   #7
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It always makes me wonder why they officially call it a 'Base'. Sorta like calling it 'Entry Level' or 'Bottom' or something. Maybe it was just lost in translation... But a good lesson in Marketing 101: Think thru your name.

I'm so glad I don't hang around with my buds and have to tell them I drive a Base...
Porsche are indeed the masters of getting people to adopt their marketing speak.

The best example is the Cayman. While the Carrera Cabriolet and the hard top Carrera are both still marketed as Carreras, Porsche decided to market the Boxster coupe (aka Cayman) as a different car and everyone went along with it without blinking an eye. When the car was laucned they marketed the Boxster coupe as a "stepping stone" car to upsell the Carrera. The irony is that on handling it's the reverse pecking order.

But I agree it should not be referred to as a base Boxster. It is the Boxster. Ditto for the Carrera.
Both of these are examples of Porsche trying to get the buyer to second guess his decision and reach deeper into the pocket. It would have been better to simply sell the Boxster with all of the S model options and offer the higher powered model with a unique badge like BMW do with the M badge.
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Old 06-10-2014, 02:23 PM   #8
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Exactly. Like calling it an Impala Base vs Impala SS. Or a million other examples.

Now that I have spent time around Boxsters - I would not hesitate to buy a primo comdition Base model.
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Old 06-10-2014, 06:51 PM   #9
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Thanks everyone for the feedback. I modified my search: 2008 Boxster S and two 2010 Boxster base (one Tiptronic). The S does have a deeper sound to the engine. Variety is.....

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Old 06-11-2014, 05:10 AM   #10
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Base vs S

I have a 2003 "base" Boxster.
It has 17 inch wheels and ABS
And cruise control that's it.
I think the option was called
The sports package on the order form.
I recently enjoyed a Car Control Clinic.
The car really surprised me in
A very good way. I am not sure what
The S could have added to the fun I had
Doing the event.

Bill and Jinx
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Old 06-11-2014, 09:08 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Wantsasportscar View Post
Thanks everyone for the feedback. I modified my search: 2008 Boxster S and two 2010 Boxster base (one Tiptronic). The S does have a deeper sound to the engine. Variety is.....
bear in mind that if you are looking at holding the Boxster long term, and the mileage is already high, 2005-2008 Boxsters have an IMS bearing that can not replaced without removing the engine. While Porsche used a far, far less problematic IMS bearing in these cars, no sealed bearing was meant for indefinite service. It hasn't been an issue up to now, but then again only a small % of those cars have reached high mileage so far. If you put light mileage on these cars, and they are low mileage, not an issue at all. All depends on how you intend to use the car and for how long.
But the bigger point is that unless the market is offering a STEEP discount for 2005-2008 Boxsters (and Carreras) over a 2009 with similar mileage, then the 9A1 engine in the 2009 is the better option net.
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Old 06-11-2014, 10:31 AM   #12
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mid 2009 S is what I'd keep saving for if I were you, OP.

Why? they redesigned the motor in mid 2009 and it doesn't have an IMS in it, and it also has direct injection.

Plus, if you don't want to row through gears, the mid 2009's got the PDK upgraded transmission which is amazing from what I hear.
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Old 06-11-2014, 12:04 PM   #13
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I concur with the suggestion of the S model over the plain model. If you are concerned with speed the S is the answer but the anecdotal data reveal that the speed factor is negated by the size of the speeding ticket and restrictive speeds everywhere in this country. The brakes is another issue that will trump the speed factor. IN my S the brakes stop on a dime and it sure nice to use them and know of the great job they do. Any kind ot modification you do in a Boxster costs plenty of $$$$$$$$$$$$ so the answer is opt for the S model since it will cost you a tidy fortune to upgrade the base to the S specs. In any event I am sure you will enjoy whchever you decide to buy. Good luck!!!!
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Old 06-12-2014, 06:22 PM   #14
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Thanks to all of you for your input . With your feedback and my driving desires I have a list of what I want:

Boxster - 2009 or newer; S package, PDK, and if it has a Chrono Package all the better. Now the fun part - finding one.

Thanks again
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Old 06-12-2014, 06:26 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Pilot2519j View Post
I concur with the suggestion of the S model over the plain model. If you are concerned with speed the S is the answer but the anecdotal data reveal that the speed factor is negated by the size of the speeding ticket and restrictive speeds everywhere in this country. The brakes is another issue that will trump the speed factor. IN my S the brakes stop on a dime and it sure nice to use them and know of the great job they do. Any kind ot modification you do in a Boxster costs plenty of $$$$$$$$$$$$ so the answer is opt for the S model since it will cost you a tidy fortune to upgrade the base to the S specs. In any event I am sure you will enjoy whchever you decide to buy. Good luck!!!!

What's with your username?
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Old 06-24-2014, 09:10 AM   #16
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Smile

After a fun few weeks I found the car. What I found in my search: Manual is the way to go; check everything - PPI, etc. as new as I could afford and stuck to my budget; compromise is good when it all works out.

New owner of a 2009 Boxster with less than 10,000 miles.

Time for some summer driving!
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Old 06-24-2014, 09:22 AM   #17
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That's sounds great congrats! This require a picture though.

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