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Old 12-22-2015, 10:02 AM   #1
alankitchener
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choosing my first boxter

Hi, just joined this site .
I would like to give up my harley and get a boxter. The problem i have is that i look into things too much, and it appears that a boxter before 2009 could be a time bomb in the engine department waiting to go off with regards to IMS. and Bore issues.
i would like some advice on choosing the most risk free years of production of the boxter, for a budget of less than 14K.
I know the 2006 model has an internal ims bearing that cant be upgraded, and the dual bearings of the earlier boxters are better than the single row bearings of later models, but i like them all , especially 2004 onwards with bigger side vents and small headlights.
Ideally i think i need one that has had the IMS upgraded, ANY FOR SALE ?

HELP!!! many thanks alan

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Old 12-22-2015, 10:35 AM   #2
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You may incur the wrath of the forum for mis-spelling boxSter.
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Old 12-22-2015, 11:02 AM   #3
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You may incur the wrath of the forum for mis-spelling boxSter.
Or..

I had been searching "boxster" on CL for a couple months, and not finding anything I liked. I searched just "Porsche" one day, and came across a guards red 986s. Had been posted for a month. I wondered how the hell I could have missed it for so long, then I saw the title: "2002 Porsche Boxter S"
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Old 12-22-2015, 12:29 PM   #4
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Alan, you seem to be more worried about the IMS than you should be. Remember, only unhappy Porsche owners blather on and on about stuff that breaks with their cars on forums for the most part. The IMS issue can be addressed on most any Boxster you find after purchase when you swap out your clutch plate. It's not the ticking time bomb you think it might be.

Purchase the youngest boxster you can find with a previous owner who took care of the car and did the maintenance and repaired things when they broke or wore out or got close to wearing out. He should be able to provide a thick folder with all his notes and receipts.

Additionally, I would pass on any boxster in the model years 1997-2002 because the build quality and the interior and the top's plastic window are really annoying. Get a 2003S with the bigger motor in it and a glass rear window. No one ever said "I wish I had bought a Porsche with the smaller motor in it" and trust me when I say that plastic window is a pain in the arse to chop in half every time you drop the top (to keep it from cracking or folding wrong).

If you find a car you like but it's 17,000 or more dollars, just save more. Don't do what I did and settle for something in your current price range. Save more money and buy a younger S model.

Now to your "low risk Porsche" comment. There are none unless you purchase a CPO car from a dealership with a maintenance contract. The car will cost you roughly $750 a year to operate if nothing goes wrong with it and you drive it daily. Boxsters eat rear tires in 10-12k miles. Oil changes are $150. And any 10-15 year old car you buy will need stuff repaired on it that will not be cheap. Parts are expensive.
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Last edited by RandallNeighbour; 12-22-2015 at 12:35 PM.
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Old 12-22-2015, 01:23 PM   #5
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Randall's advice is solid! IF you can do some of the work yourself you can sve a few buck but parts are still expensive and don't cheap out on proper service and low budget oil. It's costlier in the long run.
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Old 12-22-2015, 01:36 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alankitchener View Post
Hi, just joined this site .
I would like to give up my harley and get a boxter. The problem i have is that i look into things too much, and it appears that a boxter before 2009 could be a time bomb in the engine department waiting to go off with regards to IMS. and Bore issues.
i would like some advice on choosing the most risk free years of production of the boxter, for a budget of less than 14K.
I know the 2006 model has an internal ims bearing that cant be upgraded, and the dual bearings of the earlier boxters are better than the single row bearings of later models, but i like them all , especially 2004 onwards with bigger side vents and small headlights.
Ideally i think i need one that has had the IMS upgraded, ANY FOR SALE ?

HELP!!! many thanks alan
Hello Alan
You have chosen a very good site to join, welcome. I'm in the UK as well and look at this site every day.
When I started looking for a sports car, I had 4 different makes in mind BMW Z3, Nissan Z350, Merc SLK and Porsche Boxster. I chose the Boxster, I did in depth research knowing full well about the IMS and other weaknesses. This is a mid engined sports car in the end.
I am hands on, so was not to concerned about doing work on the car when needed. I have posted a couple of things I have done on here and on the Pelican site. They are quite easy to work on as regards servicing etc.
My car is a 2002 Boxster S with 78,000 miles on it when I bought it 5 years ago, its a single row IMS bearing I think. Its got 93,500 miles on it to date. It is my daily driver but for just 6 months of the year. I cant remember ever thinking about the IMS while driving. It goes to the red line every day many times over the 6 month period, these engines just love revs.
Every year before I lay it up for the winter I change the oil, so it has nice fresh oil to bathe in over winter. I never start it again until its time to hit the road 6 months later. The battery tender is put on as well.
Some people cannot help but worry about things that can go wrong with cars. I certainly wouldnt buy one of these in this year range if I was like that, but I am not. I made a considered choice and up to now its been very good indeed. I cant wait for next summer.
Original IMS, no problems up to now only general maintenance.
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Old 12-22-2015, 04:15 PM   #7
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Every car ever built has some design weaknesses.

You know so much about the Boxster because we love them and obsess over them because they are such great cars and fun to drive.

I've read/written on forums and blogged over the years about the IMS. I knew about the IMS when I bought a '01S.

My previous Boxster was a '99 2.5 and I actually liked driving it more because it had a smaller motor and it was more about the driver and not just a big engine I could seldom use all of. I could put my foot down harder and longer and still keep my license.

No car that cost the equivalent of what the Boxster cost new is going to have a $25 engine you can swap in in a couple of hours like a Model A. Everything is more complex. And IF you have big engine problems in a Boxster, it won't be cheap.

My 2 Boxsters were more economical year for year and mile for mile than my Honda and Acura of the same model years. And the Boxsters were bought used as third owner where the Honda and Acura were bought new.

IMHO the ideal car is a '04S whose clutch, brakes, IMS, RMS, water pump and AOS have just been done with quality parts by the best Porsche water-cooled specialist mechanic in town. But few sell those kind of cars, they are maintained by people who intend to keep them forever. The next best is one where the best mechanic in town went over the car for 2-3 hours (PPI) and told you and the seller exactly what it needed to put it in a state of highest probability of future reliability. And the PPI helped you pay a fair price, fair to you and the seller.

There is no guarantee.
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Old 12-22-2015, 05:12 PM   #8
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Welcome Alan!

I'm assuming your 14K budget is Pounds not dollars, so that would be approx. $21K. That should get you into the 987 range (or 2004 and newer in Britain). The 987 had an IMS change roughly in 2006 that was a bigger IMS that barely failed. But it's a design that cannot be changed w/o tearing the engine apart. Any Boxster from 1999 - 2005 (in British yrs) would have an IMS that can be replaced by just removing the trans but leaving the engine in place.

I own 2 987s and I don't worry about IMS. I even DE one of them and some ppl say that's not good either. Who knows? I do know I enjoy both every day. Find one that's been well maintained and you'll be glad you did.

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