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Old 12-20-2006, 05:03 PM   #1
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to "S" owners- how clunky should it be?

6 speed, that is.
I know there's a difference between the 5 and 6 speed trannies- I've driven both.
The 5 speed shifter is somewhat rubbery whereas the 6 is more metallic- feeling.
Mine's especially stiff and notchy when cold- better when it warms up but, quite frankly, it's none too refined.
Any comments? Is there some kind of additive I could add?
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Old 12-20-2006, 05:36 PM   #2
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The 6-speed in my 987 is very smooth and precise.
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Old 12-20-2006, 08:33 PM   #3
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I feel the same way wanna. My 6 speed is a little imprecise and not the best shifter I've tried. I tried the B&M but hated it so I went back to stock. I just live with it knowing it will never shift like a S2000 or some other nice shifting automobile.
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Old 12-21-2006, 12:03 AM   #4
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Yeap, pretty clunky.

I've noticed it's getting really annoying going from 2nd to 3rd. Partly is me being a little lazy in my throw I think, but it does want to catch a bit early on the divider. By the time I rethrow it correctly my revmatch is all off:P

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Old 12-21-2006, 03:16 AM   #5
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I agree complete wanna986. As the weather got colder shifting from second to third especially became more work. The dealer said it's normal with the cold weather along with a long technical explanation about Porsches and transmissions. But after driving for over 30 minutes hard it does smooth out completely.
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Old 12-21-2006, 04:06 AM   #6
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I have a 986S, Very difficult to shift in cold weather, and clunky in my opinion in any weather. In fact the only thing I miss about my Miata.
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Old 12-21-2006, 04:56 AM   #7
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My 3rd and 4th were balky, especially when cold. I changed my tranny oil to Redline MT90, and it helped a lot.
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Old 12-21-2006, 05:00 AM   #8
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I test drove the 987 (5sp) and 987S (6sp) in the same day, and couldn't notice any difference in shifting gears.
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Old 12-21-2006, 05:12 AM   #9
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I've never driven and S2000 and I'm glad I haven't. People rave about that manual transmission. They must require absolutely no skill to drive compared to the Porsche. For me the six speed on my 987s is extremely smooth and easy to shift. As the miles have worn on it's only goten better, I am at 5k now. It is stiff in the cold but not prohibitively so. My wife drive's it, my kids have driven it, friends and relatives ahve driven it and they all think it's a breeze, though my wife thinks pressing in the clutch is too hard. You want clunky try a VW. Maybe it's because I started with a stick over 30 years ago. I've driven manual Corollas, Land Cruisers, Fiat 128s, Mustangs, VWs, Chevy's and Hondas and the Porsche's is by far the easiest for me. I just don't see why people grumble about the stick in the 987s. To miss third from second is a huge miss if you're hitting 5th. If you go from 2nd to 1st or 4th to 1st man o man you must have had a brain freeze. 1st to 2nd is sraight as an arrow as is 3rd to 4th. Sure I can feel the shifts and even hear them when I'm making sure I'm in 1st at a light but there's nothing difficult about shifting. Anyway my 2@s.
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Old 12-21-2006, 06:17 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JackG
My 3rd and 4th were balky, especially when cold. I changed my tranny oil to Redline MT90, and it helped a lot.
+10000000000

Anyone dissatisfied with the shift action of their car, ANY car, should switch to redline. It's especially impressive in the improvement in cold operation. Incredible stuff.
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Old 12-21-2006, 06:51 AM   #11
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1JB, I think clunky is a relative term, driving a Miata for 15 yrs and then switching to the 986 leaves a lot to be desired...it's still a Porsche and I still love it. In fact of all the cars I have driven the Miata would beat most cars in the "feel" of the shifter department. I wouldn't trade my Porsche in a second though....especially for an S2000.
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Old 12-21-2006, 07:03 AM   #12
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Hi,

IIRC, Porsche switched from the German-sourced Getrag-ZF Manual Transmission to a Japanese-sourced unit produced by Aisin AI in 2005 (not 100% certain of the Model Year switch, but the 987 is definitely the Japanese unit). This could explain the noticed differences in Shifter feel from the earlier cars to the latest ones.

The Tiptronic unit continues to be produced by Getrag-ZF in Germany...

Happy Motoring!... Jim'99

Last edited by MNBoxster; 12-21-2006 at 08:12 AM.
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Old 12-21-2006, 08:51 AM   #13
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Japanese tranny? So the Subie engine swap might not even need an adapter plate...

Sorry, couldn't resist.
Ouch! Just took a lightning bolt from the Porsche gods...

fwiw - the shifting on my 2001 2.7/5 speed was great. A little notchy at startup, sure, but the feel was perfect (for me) once warm. On the track it was flawless, never thought about the shifting at all. Maybe the desired shifter feel is a personal preference thing? Never drove an S2000 so can't comment.
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Old 12-21-2006, 10:02 AM   #14
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I drove an S2000 for a year before buying a 986 S. The initial impression from just about anyone regarding the S2000 tranny is that it's the best thing since sliced bread, except for perhaps the miata. The long term impression for many is quite different, me included. It is a very light effort unit, like the miata, and a lot of that comes from the fact that it doesn't have to handle much torque. The less torque the engine produces, the lighter the effort will tend to be because everything in the tranny can be smaller and lighter duty. So, one would expect something like a Boxster S to require more effort to shift. The flip side of that is that the S2000 tranny feels fragile, and it is. Troll around on s2ki.com for a while and read about the high wear rate of the synchros... the crunching into 2nd gear due to light-duty synchros... the recommendation not to do 3rd-to-6th gear changes because of the splines on the shafts rounding off... all of this increasing shift effort over time and causing one to have to be very careful about shifting too quickly and getting the "crunch." Many S2000s that are not new have the "dreaded 1-2 crunch."

So IMO, the S2000 tranny is harder to use properly than the Boxster unit, by a mile.

Personally, after worrying about that for a year, I am very happy with the feel of the Boxster unit, because it feels substantial, rugged and easy to use.

Ken
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Old 12-21-2006, 02:02 PM   #15
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Well the 986S gear box was not intended to be coupled with tbe Boxster engine.
Kind of an after thought, let's take the Carrera six speed gearbox and stick in the Boxster. I think the differing and wide ranging opinions on the B&M short shifter bolster this opinon as nearly every Carrera owner sees an immediate improvement with a short shifter while BoxsterS owners seemed very mixed.
It's crunchy and noisy but I much prefer it to only having 5 gears.

THere's no comparing anything to the S2000, like a precise bolt action rifle.
But you're paying for it. An S2000 is now creeping over $35K and they still look
like...well an s2000. Compare that to the 1993 Boxster concept car which still looks great today.


I had a miata and I wouldn't trade that gear box for my clunking 6 speed for even a day. That darn thing was notchy as hell. I played with all flavors of Redline fluid and sometimes it was smooth (when the it got hot) and sometimes it was like
cracking walnuts. The best improvement came when I replaced the shift boot, snick, snick, snick. Too bad I sold the car the next day.
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Old 12-21-2006, 03:29 PM   #16
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I dont mind mine so much.. it is a little notchy when cold but otherwise pretty nice. My prior BMW M roadsters gear box was definately better. I drive S2000s all the time as I work at a Honda Collision Center and typically dont like the cold feeling aluminum shift nob. It doesnt feel very connective with the car. The shifter is short and accurate though.

By the way Perfectlap, I would have bought that concept design in a heartbeat!
That thing is awesome looking!
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Old 12-21-2006, 05:45 PM   #17
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So the consensus is, "yeah, it's not the best but...redline will help!"
Good enough for me, I just wanted to be reassured there wasn't anything "wrong". I never thought I'd call my fox body Mustang's 5 speed smooth, though.
Thanks, all.
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Old 12-22-2006, 04:32 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MNBoxster
Hi,

IIRC, Porsche switched from the German-sourced Getrag-ZF Manual Transmission to a Japanese-sourced unit produced by Aisin AI in 2005 (not 100% certain of the Model Year switch, but the 987 is definitely the Japanese unit). This could explain the noticed differences in Shifter feel from the earlier cars to the latest ones.

The Tiptronic unit continues to be produced by Getrag-ZF in Germany...

Happy Motoring!... Jim'99
Actually the Boxster still has the Getrag as of the 06. I asked this question while at the factory. They showed me the Getrag transmissions ready to ship to Finland. All others including the Turbo are Porsche design made in Japan.
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Old 12-22-2006, 06:59 PM   #19
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Purchased my 6 speed in Sept - and noticed a huge difference when we hit a cold spell. Once I got her up to temp, it was back to normal. Asked my fellas at the dealership, and they concur. She likes to be nice and warm for smooth shifting.
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Old 12-22-2006, 07:40 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C5150
Purchased my 6 speed in Sept - and noticed a huge difference when we hit a cold spell. Once I got her up to temp, it was back to normal. Asked my fellas at the dealership, and they concur. She likes to be nice and warm for smooth shifting.
Hope Santa brings us summer soon (Couldn't resist; saw your "no rain" post.)
Happy shifting!
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