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Old 11-22-2010, 07:34 PM   #1
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2011 Box S & Panamera Hot Laps

We had a performance driving event last weekend at the historic Pomona Fairplex race track. PCNA came out to play with us sporting a 2011 Box S PDK, a Base Panamera PDK and a pair of Grand Am professional race car drivers. What a Hoot! I got a ride last June in the Panamera S and Boxster Spyder so I was interested in the comparisons.

I really liked the Box S a lot. It is a giant leap in technology compared with my 12 yr old 2.5L 5spd. The PDK is flawless, 300ish HP is exactly right for this car, and the suspension is very sophisticated. Performance is really very close to the Box Spyder in every way. I love the look of the Spyder but reality requires me to have a real top. The track we ran is pretty wide open allowing a driver to use all of their HP. My car with R-comp tires still has higher ultimate grip but the 2011 Box S with Grand Am driver easily drove around me twice. Would I own one ? Yes I would.

The Panamera is pretty amazing too once you are inside. A luxury 4 door with outstanding performance. It too had 300 hp, flawless PDK, and excellent driving dynamics. The down side? Standing next to it I am forced to avert my eyesight. This is not a beautiful car. I have no artistic eye but there is just something wrong with the way it looks. Not the car for me.

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Old 11-22-2010, 08:03 PM   #2
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Great review on your take on the Boxster S! I've heard them drive by on the street and they sound sweet. The Panamera is nice too, it has a quirkiness I like. It's not too pretty but it performs so well and it's 'different' like a a Golf or Jetta is different.
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Originally Posted by Topless
I love the look of the Spyder but reality requires me to have a real top.
I've read alot of people say that and if you're fortunate to have the newer 03-04 glass top or even a GAHH top I can see your point but I still have my original '00 plastic top and I find that it takes a good 3-4 minutes, atleast, to put the top down. First I need to stop, open the trunk and get my towel out, get back in, unlatch the top, open the top halfway, get out and do the 'chop', lay the towel across the window, get back in and open the top the rest of the way while neatly folding and tucking the canvas carefully. I could probably operate the Spyder manual top in about the same time. If I could afford to blow $72,000 right now on a car I'd consider the Spyder within my top three and the manual top would not be an issue.
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Old 11-23-2010, 04:33 AM   #3
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I'm sure that Box Spyder is sweet, if there is money in my future I'm unaware of I'd strongly consider picking up a used one in a couple years. The reality is, I have no where to enjoy something any faster than what I have. The way I see it, if the Box Spyder is among the best of the best in handling, how far down that list can a older Boxster be?
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Old 11-23-2010, 06:32 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by eightsandaces
I have no where to enjoy something any faster than what I have.
The SCCA is all over the US. You can auto-x with them any time. And Watkins Glenn is just 130 miles away. You really should take your car to a HST there.


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The way I see it, if the Box Spyder is among the best of the best in handling, how far down that list can a older Boxster be?
This is so true. I could buy a $10,000 boxster put an additional $10,000 in suspension and engine upgrades and smoke a $60,000 spyder on almost any track.
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Old 11-23-2010, 07:45 AM   #5
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[/Quote] This is so true. I could buy a $10,000 boxster put an additional $10,000 in suspension and engine upgrades and smoke a $60,000 spyder on almost any track.[/QUOTE]

I am not so sure. You would probably need the 10K just to get an equivalent motor in there. The PDK is the closest thing yet to a Cup car synchronous gearbox, and the modern PASM sport suspension is very sophisticated. A well sorted 3.6L motor into my car with GT3 arms, JRZ shocks, tarett sways would be closer to $30k total, and you still have a 12 year old car. If the two cars were the same weight on the same tires it would be a very close race. The new Boxster S PDK really is that good.
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Old 11-23-2010, 09:01 AM   #6
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This is so true. I could buy a $10,000 boxster put an additional $10,000 in suspension and engine upgrades and smoke a $60,000 spyder on almost any track.[/QUOTE]

I am not so sure. You would probably need the 10K just to get an equivalent motor in there. The PDK is the closest thing yet to a Cup car synchronous gearbox, and the modern PASM sport suspension is very sophisticated. A well sorted 3.6L motor into my car with GT3 arms, JRZ shocks, tarett sways would be closer to $30k total, and you still have a 12 year old car. If the two cars were the same weight on the same tires it would be a very close race. The new Boxster S PDK really is that good.[/QUOTE]

Yes all this is true but that is not what I am saying. Most guys who buy a porsche never drive it anywhere near its limit. All of us on these forums know that most porsche (or any expensive sports car) owners never drive their car to it's full potential. I have passed some really fast cars at Hallett in my Beetle Why? Because I drive the hell out of my car, where as someone with a new porsche in most cases are reluctant to push it. Just look at harry's video of him leaving a 997 at Sebring. Now I'm sure if you put him in the 997 it would be faster. So what I am saying is you can have alot of fun and go really fast in an older car.

PS. I have passed numerous mustangs and Z1 corvettes at Hallett but I have also been passed by spec miatas who can't lose me in the straights but walk all over my beetle in the corners. There is just no way to balance the NB without destroying it as a daily driver, and even then it would be hard if not impossible. That is why I am buying a boxster, I want the balance.
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Old 11-23-2010, 10:50 AM   #7
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I can somewhat relate to this........




We were invited to the Porsche driving event!!

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Oh man, that was fun!!

My wife and I participated Monday morning in the Porsche driving event out at the Miller Motorsports Park in Toelle/Utah, 30 mins outside Salt Lake City.

It was a blast!

Porsche invited us, lucky us, met at the dealership (Dave Strong, SLC) and took a bus out there. The race track has really nice facilities, I was there many times watching ALMS and other events.

We were met by at least 12 Porsche people, breakfast was served, short intro, then they divided us in 3 groups with 9 persons in each group. The average age of the group was approx. 55, I was one of the younger guys.....

First up was taking a new Cayenne Turbo off road
We tested hill descend function (kind of wired to let the vehicle do the braking, no feet on the pedals!) and some pretty extreme angels, people were actually screaming! We all had the chance to drive ourselves.

Next was track driving, we used the west course. An instructor took the lead and we followed in various cars which were a 6 cyl. RWD Panamera, a Cayenne S, and a C4S. It was "spirited" driving. Make no mistake, tires were squealing in each corner! Most surprising was the Panamera, the 8-speed gearbox makes the car! Pretty fast, too! With the C4S I wish we could go faster.

The third part was taking a Boxster S, a Cayenne Turbo and, wait for it, a Boxster Spyder around an autocross track. All of us were driving with an instructor sitting next to us giving us advice. THAT was great!! They totally succeeded to wet my appetite for more! Even my wife was completly taken and wants more, she even indicated that we should mod our Boxster to match the Spyder!

The S was very nice, too, nothing special in terms of options, regular shocks etc but with PDK. I was surprised by the effect the "sport plus" button has, changes the car a lot.

The Spyder was a blast, I can see this as the best handling car around these days!

The Cayenne Turbo is simply scary! SO much power!

The instructors gave me some good advice and I am proud to report that I did not drive over any cones

Last was a blast around the race track with the instructors driving the Panamera and Cayenne S, well, was ok but I'd rather drive myself!

So, thank you Porsche! It was a really nice Monday morning and hopefully we can do this again one day!

Later,
Andy
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Old 11-23-2010, 11:07 AM   #8
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Andy, that sounds like it was a great time! I bought my Boxster from Dave Strong also and got the invite but I'm living in MD now. Bummer, but thanks for sharing your experience.
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Old 11-24-2010, 10:34 AM   #9
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Too bad JTP!!!

Well, at least we are connected vie this forum...

Happy T-Day!

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