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Old 10-08-2006, 02:28 PM   #1
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What do you think?

I have been a porsche fan for as long as I can remember, and now am faced with an interesting situation... I currently drive an Acura TSX 6 speed, and while it is a great car I am ready for change, and in spring will sell it and be getting a replacement vehicle, I have narrowed it to a few choices. My complaints about the TSX, interior quality(love the styling, just not the highest quality materials used) and speed/performance(I knew it was a slow car when I got it, but I didn't think it would be a big deal... but now I am ready for something quicker). I am looking at the new infiniti G35(maybe named the G37), a new RL(returning as an Acura customer I will get a great trade in and a heavily discounted price on the RL) or a low mileage, few year old Boxster S.

All will cost about the same amount and I think its fair to compare the RL and the infiniti, but the boxster is the odd duck, in that its a two seater convertable, and not brand new. I am a fairly successful guy in his mid-20's, no serious gf, no kids, no real resposibilities in life, and a lot of my older friends are telling me "you only live once, you can do it now(get the porsche) do it". While part of me agree's with that, my practical side says a new car will be less potential problems, a sedan makes life a touch easier, but the new cars will cost more to own(residual value on the RL is horrible, and the infiniti is merely average based on the current model) , so the porsche will probably be a cheaper car to own and maintain. I live just south of Albany New York, and this will be my daily driver, but with a set of snow tires I am not too concerned about winter driving. My work load will be changing soon and I will be able to work primarly from home, so even if it is nasty out, I may not need to go out, or have the ability to delay until things are cleared up a bit.

I know I will get some bias input from a boxster forum, but if you were in my shoes, what would you do?

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Old 10-08-2006, 02:33 PM   #2
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The part where you say the Porsche will be cheaper to own and maintain may not be accurate. This is an expensive car to maintain even for the DIY guy. I love my car until it has to be fixed or the oil needs changed. Good luck, Im sure you will love the Boxster. Get a warranty if you get the Porsche. My .02
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Old 10-08-2006, 02:52 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by ohioboxster
The part where you say the Porsche will be cheaper to own and maintain may not be accurate. This is an expensive car to maintain even for the DIY guy. I love my car until it has to be fixed or the oil needs changed. Good luck, Im sure you will love the Boxster. Get a warranty if you get the Porsche. My .02
The cheaper to own statement was made based on residual value, the other cars, while costing the same will depreciate much faster then the porsche.

The oil change interval is around 10k miles, the others will be at 5k... the oil and filter do not cost twice as much as the other cars, so basic PM maintance will also be less.

I forgot to mention, of the two businesses I own, one is a high volume auto repair/tire shop, so working on the car is not an issue.
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Old 10-08-2006, 03:19 PM   #4
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I dont know how much oil changes are on the other cars. I do however know that my car holds almost 10 qts at $5.79 a qt and the filter is around $18.00 its not cheap was my point. If you research this site you will find that most of our cars have the same maintenance issues. Examples are MAF , 02 sensors, ignition switches and you pray daily that the RMS issues will leave you alone. Its a good thing you own an auto repair shop because the Boxster will be in one of the bays quite often. Im not trying to talk you out of the Porsche by any means. I wish I would have researched more before I bought mine.
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Old 10-08-2006, 04:09 PM   #5
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I got a 99 boxster specificaly because its the year pre 2.7 engine. That way there are things that I can get for my car that 2.7's have a harder time (and vice versa). So far I have had no problems other than a dirty MAF, but with an aftermarket warranty (paid an ass load) I only have to pay a $100 deductible for any work besides brakes and oil changes etc... So if I ever get an rms or engine failure I get a new engine and labor for $100. Get the boxster because even if you only keep it for a couple monthes you could probably sell it for more than you paid if you get a good deal.
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Old 10-08-2006, 04:26 PM   #6
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If you have a repair shop, buy a boxster! I sure would if I had a repair shop. That would make owning my old, needs everything boxster a lot more fun. Just make sure the guy working on it is familiar with Boxsters and their typical issues.

I tell you what though, the maintenance goes well beyond the oil changes. Boxsters seem to eat tires faster than most other cars and need suspension parts replaced far earlier than other makes, etc. Even if you can get the labor comp'd through your company, you still have to pay for the parts. I just bought a control arm and at 10% over cost, it was 270.00.
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Old 10-08-2006, 04:29 PM   #7
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That was the point I was trying to make. I didnt mean dont buy a Boxster because oil is expensive. They are just a repair shops dream car.
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Old 10-08-2006, 05:17 PM   #8
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You might also want to rethink that depreciation assumption also.
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Old 10-08-2006, 05:18 PM   #9
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You only live once...I bought my first Porsche in my forties; wish I had a time machine to buy one my twenties...
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Old 10-08-2006, 06:21 PM   #10
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Go for the Porsche....you only live once. I am a young guy (early thirties) and the advice I give is: buy a house, max out your retirement, and have 3-6 months of paycheck in a SAVINGS ACCOUNT...if you can afford the Porsche after that...GO FOR IT. Be ready to beat the chicks off with a stick though...unfortunately the ones that hit on me are usually the hefty ones at the drive through. My wife justs laughs at me...and laughs and laughs.
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Old 10-08-2006, 07:21 PM   #11
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You guys are starting to make me scared... I have a friend with a 00 986 he bought it used with 21k on the clock, it currently has 39k and he has done nothing other then oil changes and a battery. I have a number of boxsters that come in, along with 993's, 996's and a small handful of 997's and they all seem fairly trouble free.... or maybe the owners are hiding it from me.


I had a new caddy a number of years ago and owning that car was like joint custody with the dealership, which is why I went japanese and now I am spoiled with the reliability. If constant problems are part of owning the car then its not for me, I just like a car that is fun to drive and works. I know the S2000 seems like another possible choice, but to me it seems less practical then the boxster and I really want a car with more torque(my main complaint with the Acura).

I'll remain open minded about this, but honestly based on the replies so far I am not interested in getting a car if its going to be problems... in this day and age that seems like a very foolish thing to do, image is not that important to me.
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Old 10-08-2006, 07:25 PM   #12
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boxlover,
Buy whatever gets your heart racing the fastest. (There's a whole world of difference between RL and the Box). Personally, if I were you, I'd go for an 05 987 S. Next spring they will be 2+ yrs old, off lease. Catch a nice, low mileage one for low $40k (or less) and enjoy the 2 remaining yrs of waranty, or a CPO one even better. That Box S will definitely depreciate less than your other choices. It's also a totally different animal from the others. "Driving" means something else when in a Box. There's no substitute, seriously. You can always get an RL when you're 45, married, with 2 kids -- there will be plenty RLs waiting for you in the showroom.

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Old 10-08-2006, 07:31 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brucelee
You might also want to rethink that depreciation assumption also.

I don't think there is any need for that.

Look at how hard the RL gets hit, it will lose 20k in value in 3 years, the boxster will lose a lot less, the big hit has already been taken buying one used... but based on the replies I really don't think I am interested in getting involved with vehicle that has a lot of known problems.

The G35/37 will probably be the car for me, japanese reliability, great engine, torque, new car waranty and won't cost much more to own for a few years then the boxster, by that point I should be in a position to purchase a new 997, which is what I really want. I just thought that boxster would be a fun interm vehicle and a possible nice introduction to owning a porsche.

Thanks for the honest feedback, it makes this choice a lot easier.
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Old 10-09-2006, 09:44 AM   #14
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"...by that point I should be in a position to purchase a new 997, which is what I really want."

So you'd be willing to spend $30k more for a 997 which has the same "issues" as 987 and 986? You are rightly forewarned that Porsche will cost more to maintain than a Nissan, but the same can be said about Ferrari, Aston Martin, and every other high-performance, high-precision car. Even regular maintenance will indeed cost more. Fixing a problem, indeed even more so.

Personally, I think Porsches are designed to lure their drivers into driving them hard. My Box rpm needle resides in the 4k+ area much more often then the needle in my Maxima. Still, there are no 30 year old Maxima's doing hard track laps at DE events (not that I've seen).

Nothing bad with playing it safe. But more often than not, it's only by taking some risk that you get an extraordinary reward.
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Old 10-09-2006, 10:05 AM   #15
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I'd go for the Infiniti now and trade up to a Porsche later. Also, as cars continue to get better and better, I'm not sure your next choice will be limited to a Porsche. As I read all of the stories about Porsche's spotty dealer service, problems such as RMS and other kinds of engine failures, and the secretiveness of the manufacturer, I'm not sure MY next car will be a Porsche. The problems seem to be pretty widespread for a manufacturer with such limited production. If you took all of these stories and replaced the brand with "Cadillac," you'd probably say, "Well, what do you expect from GM?" But when you're spending $60k from a manufacturer with a mythical reputation for engineering and you end up with a low-mileage engine failure (as I've read about here and on other boards a number of times), you have to think twice about Porsche.

As Porsche continues to expand its product line, while ignoring both manufacturing defects and its customers, other brands will start to look better. If I had my druthers today, I'd seriously consider a BMW 330i. The sticker is over $16K less than my '05 987S and you appear to get an awful lot more for your money, including free routine service (as opposed to Porsche's $250 oil changes). If BMW would produce a Z4M that had a higher quality interior and wasn't so weird looking, it, too, would be a much better value than a 987S.

My point is that you should go for the reliability and performance of the Infiniti, work your way up in the world and by the time you're ready for a Porsche, there will be many other choices.
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Old 10-09-2006, 10:21 AM   #16
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Its a good time to be Boxster buyer. I see you are in New York. Try and hire a car broker that is familiar with th Pennsylvania (Manheim) Porsche auctions. Try and find as low a mileage 2000 or newer BoxsterS. If you buy a 2nd hand boxster from dealer odds are he picked up his Boxster he's selling you as a trade in or at one of these auctions.
Tons of 03 and 04 Boxsters are coming back form leases so they send them to these auctions for Non-porsche dealers. I have lots of friends who lease their sports cars to reduce the deprecitation although either way they are putting out allot of money they won't be getting back. Meanwhile the dealer sells that well maintained lease returned sports car for a nice price to the 2nd owner. win win for them. Get your Boxster wholesale if you can, well worth the effort.
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Old 10-09-2006, 11:16 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boxlover
I know I will get some bias input from a boxster forum, but if you were in my shoes, what would you do?
i have an '04 G35 with a 6-speed, 18" wheels, brembo package, and zero lift package. i also have a '99 boxster w/ M030 sport suspension & 18" wheels.

the G35 is a great car. i love the way it looks, it's reliable, comfortable, and fun to drive. that having been said, it has 30,000 miles on it and the boxster has 103,000.

the boxster is such a joy to drive. every day i fall in love with it again. even though it lacks the low end 'punch' of the G35, everything works so well together; it more than makes up for the power differential. the balance is perfect, the grip is endless. it's very light on its feet. the seats are FAR more comfortable than the G's in my opinion. also, believe it or not, the box has quite a bit more usable trunk space. the G35's trunk is barely larger than the boxster's rear trunk, BUT....it has two trunks. and the sound from the intake is so sweet....

the G35 is fairly agile for its size, but it feels big. the box is much easier to drive fast; it constantly communicates to the driver in a way that makes the G feel a bit dead. the G's steering is a bit light just off center; it feels a little sloppy until you push it a bit. also, the traction / yaw control in the G35 steps in WAY early and WAY too aggressively. it's scary when it kicks in. also, there's not much headroom in the G35 for taller drivers. i'm 6'0" and my head hits the roof in my preferred driving position. i have to lean the seat back further than i'd like to. also, the door sills are kind of high for my taste. it can feel a little claustrophobic. i also like to rest my arm on the door sill when the windows are down. in the G, this cuts off the blood supply to my arm. the stereo is pretty good. the shifter is VERY sweet indeed.

the box does require a bit of maintenance. it's usually little stuff, but it adds up. it's also got a serious appetite for tires, but much of that is due to my driving style. i've never gotten more than 7K out of a set of rear tires. conversely, on the G35 i've just replaced the rears for the first time (32K miles on Pilot Sports). some will say that the G35 is more practical. it DOES have back seats, and they CAN fit adults, but i haven't ever used them for anything other than a briefcase, coat, etc. the trunk is very shallow and rather small. the seats do fold down, though. when you add up the size of the boxster's two trunks, there's really quite a bit of space. i actually fit a night stand for my bedroom in the front trunk standing upright! (spare tire removed).

all in all, they're very different cars. both are wonderful in their own rights, but for me, the boxster is so much more the driver's car that there really is no comparison. when i get in the G35 after driving the boxster, it always feels like something's off. it really feels like a sport sedan more than a sports car. when i get back in the box after driving the G, it's like putting on your favorite pair of shoes. you wear it more than drive it. and it's convertible!!
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Old 10-09-2006, 11:32 AM   #18
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"when i get back in the box after driving the G, it's like putting on your favorite pair of shoes. you wear it more than drive it."

Very well said.
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Old 08-02-2008, 07:33 PM   #19
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and also:

If you go to the dealership at critical times, you may be able to get a good deal on your oil change. At Pacific Porsche, the oil change costs usually run about, what, $269, members? I paid $99 for my last oil change there. I have found that you have to play the game when dealing with dealerships...sometimes you win!

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