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Old 12-24-2015, 04:32 AM   #1
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Is there such a thing as a cheap Porsche?

OK, I did exactly what you not supposed to do in buying my first real Porsche. I have been looking for a car to buy for several weeks. I had initially been looking at a 99 911, but it had a tick in the passenger side of the engine and everyone said to walk away from it.

Upon some more research, I just decided that I could not play in the 911 arena comfortably at this point. So I started looking into and learning about Boxsters. I looked at and drove a few, my budget being about $10K.

And then yesterday I saw a posting for a salvage title, burgandy 99 with a hard top. I went and drove the car and looked it over, my main concern being the engine. The engine sounds really good, no startup chain rattle, no ticks, no "rocks in a can" from underneath..... It does have some paint issues, hood, trunk and drivers door. Not bad but I will need to get them painted for it to look right. The interior is good except the drivers seat is trashed. It has heated seats, traction control, cruise, a hard top and better wheels than I had seen on other 99s.

The car drives good, pulls strong, runs straight and stops straight. Suspension seems a little stiff, a bit jarring going over small bumps. Several rattles in the cab to chase down, but overall, seems OK.

Long story short, I bought a Porsche with no PPI and no records for $4,700! Only time will tell if that was stupid or brilliant.



I do most of my own wrenching and have started compiling the list of things I will be doing to it mechanically:

Oil change, check filter and drop sump for inspection
Spin on oil adapter and filter mag
Replace water pump, thermostat and flush
Drive belt
Fuel and air filters
I will buy the Durametric setup next week. (anyone have one they want to sell?)

I will have it looked over by a mechanic pretty soon, probably after the oil change to see what he thinks I need to do.

After I am more comfortable with the mechanicals, I will start working on the cosmetics.

I will add more to this as I learn more about the car.

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Old 12-24-2015, 04:39 AM   #2
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No issues with your insurance company or State (registration) with the salvaged title?

As long as you can do a lot of the work yourself, you MIGHT be ok. Get an alignment done, too. Hope your frame is straight. Enjoy!
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Old 12-24-2015, 04:40 AM   #3
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There are deals to be had out there! Looks like a decent car for the money. Interesting wheels, I assume they are aftermarket? Heck the hardtop alone is probably worth about $1000 or better.

I think you did fine. Even if the motor is toast you have a few dollars left over to get a used motor and throw it in. Address all the mechanicals before going after cosmetics, never know what it may need.

Otherwise drive it like you stole it, which at $4,700 you almost did!
Merry Christmas!
J
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Old 12-24-2015, 05:00 AM   #4
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That's a great price no matter what the history. I'm suspicious about why they let it go so cheap though. How many miles and why does it have a salvage title? It's not the end of the world because a car has a salvage title. I've seen insurance companies total a vehicle because the bumper cover got ripped off. Heck, I've bought two vehicles from the insurance auctions that were written off for flood damage but I couldn't find an once of damage on them.
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Old 12-24-2015, 05:07 AM   #5
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I forgot to put this in the post, 87K miles.
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Old 12-24-2015, 05:29 AM   #6
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While there are risks with any purchase, and a few red flags, I'd say you got yourself a great deal!

You'll likely put a few thousand into it to get it up to snuff and still have yourself a below-market car. Of course, like any of our cars, there will be recurring costs to keep her purring. This was once a $40k car and even though you got it for a song, the parts cost are still exorbitant in many instances. I'd say all of us here consider it worth it to drive these wonderful, wonderful cars.

Not a bad present to find under your tree. And welcome to the board!
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Old 12-24-2015, 06:02 AM   #7
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Sounds like you got one of those insurance salvage cars with no real issues.

Honestly at that price and doing your own wrenching I don't see how you could loose, even with the worst case scenario.

If it runs nice and no CEL lights you are off to a good start.

Put a magnetic drain plug in after you change the oil.

If it were me and I didn't know the reason for salvage, I'd drop the oil pan and check for debris and metal. Best to get that stuff out of the engine asap and see what accumulates by the next oil change.

I'd also leave the spin-on filter off for the next 2 oil changes so you can take the existing filters apart a few times to check for debris.

Based on what you find (Takes photos for us) we will be able to tell you what the debris in your filter comes from. (Chain Ramps - plastic bits, Aluminum - journals or chain rubbing casting, Magnetic bits - IMS bearing)

The Durametric will help you diagnose other stuff. Again the forum members/enthusiasts are a treasure trove of valuable info and always glad to help.
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Old 12-24-2015, 06:26 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by ksjohn View Post
Long story short, I bought a Porsche with no PPI and no records ....
Nice looking car -I love the color and wheels! But I sure wish that you had got a PPI.

I would say that there are no cheap Porsche's - and this is coming from a guy who bought a 99 996 for $10K and a 78 911SC for $15K - both substantially below market price.

There are three rules for buying a used Porsche;
Rule #1 - No one gives away a Porsche. If its cheap, there is a reason. Or many reasons. Or many, many, many reasons.
Rule #2 - Never trust what the seller says. Never. Ever. Assume everything they say is a lie and you won't be disappointed.
Rule #3 - Get a PPI. It will be the best $300 that you ever spend in your life.

Based on my experience, with 87K miles and 17 years, in the first year or so you'll need to fix the obvious and not so obvious problems at $1K, perform a major service to get a maintenance starting point at $500, the suspension surely needs a $1.5K refresh, and the tires will likely need replacement within a year at $750 because there is no way to drive this car slow so you're are going to wear out tires.

Its amazing how fast one can spend $3,750 on a used Porsche.

Now, do you HAVE to do all of that? Of course not - you can just drive it and hope for the best. But most Porsche owners will start down a path of catching up on the deferred maintenance and overall rejuvenation which will lead to the costs outlined above. Its just what happens.

Just don't take it to the track...
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Old 12-24-2015, 06:40 AM   #9
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Not bad with the hard top.

I bought a clear titled, 2 owner 98 with 117K miles in 2011 for $4,800. It had a bad rear window and top had quit going up/down. Owner told be AC would work most of the time, as did the stereo.

After changing all the fluids, filters and plugs (tubes and o-rings. too). I sourced a used top/frame for $400 and got the top going with a new (used) top relay. Also replaced motor mount.

The AC and stereo? Bad ignition switch.

I sold the car to a coworker and he's still enjoying it. In his 4 years of ownership, his only failure has been a fuel pump relay.

Enjoy the car! At the end of the day, you don't have big money in it and if it looks like you bit off more than you can chew, dump it!

Merry Christmas.
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Old 12-24-2015, 07:02 AM   #10
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Hard top is nice, but does the cabriolet top work? Have holes/leaks/cracked rear window??
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Old 12-24-2015, 08:37 AM   #11
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Congratulations on your new adventure! Can I ask, where in KS did you find this car?
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Old 12-24-2015, 12:21 PM   #12
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Good catch. I've been watching it on Kansas City Craigslist all week - it's the perfect starting point for a Spec Boxster. If it wasn't Christmas week, it would be sitting at my house instead of yours!

Check your option list - it's underneath the front trunk - I'd be interested in seeing what all options the car has. With your description of the suspension, I wouldn't be surprised to see the car has the M030 Sport Suspension option. The wheels are called "Dyno wheels" - they are factory option wheels from 98-00.

Welcome to the Boxster Club. There are a lot of very friendly, smart guys here that know these cars inside out. Don't be afraid to ask questions - you'll get the answer you need. Keep us informed of your progress bringing it up to speed.

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Old 12-24-2015, 01:25 PM   #13
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I sold a black 2000 base with stick and 84K miles for $5,000 a few weeks back. It didn't have a salvage title and everything was good. The top needed to be adjusted because it was finicky when the guy look at it. I also included new uninstalled interior and headlights. There just isn't much of a market in Los Angeles right now. I tried to sell it for over 6 months and only 2 people came to look at it even though I had tons of calls saying they would. There are many good deals to be had. It is a great time to pick up a nice boxster for unbelievable prices.

You do have to be careful though. They guy I sold it to is trying to flip it and he is saying it has a new top and IMS bearing which it doesn't. The best part, he is calling it a Millennium edition!
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Old 12-24-2015, 01:34 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by apswater View Post
I sold a black 2000 base with stick and 84K miles for $5,000 a few weeks back. It didn't have a salvage title and everything was good. The top needed to be adjusted because it was finicky when the guy look at it. I also included new uninstalled interior and headlights. There just isn't much of a market in Los Angeles right now. I tried to sell it for over 6 months and only 2 people came to look at it even though I had tons of calls saying they would. There are many good deals to be had. It is a great time to pick up a nice boxster for unbelievable prices.

You do have to be careful though. They guy I sold it to is trying to flip it and is saying it has a new top and IMS bearing which it doesn't. The best part, he is calling it a Millennium edition!
I heard it had a new Flux Capacitor as well. You don't want those to go out at 88mph.
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Old 12-24-2015, 01:47 PM   #15
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Here is his ad 2000 Porsche Boxster 84k miles Stick shift Millennium sport package convertible.

You will also notice the pictures of the interior are not for that car. I had a black shift boot, carpet and parking brake. In fact you will notice the interior pictures are for a blue car and not a black car.

I did add the PORSCHE on the trunk.

So be careful out there. Always have a mechanic look at it before you buy it. There are lots of scam artists out there.
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Old 12-24-2015, 01:58 PM   #16
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Don't overlook the IMS

Hopefully by now you have read and did research regarding the "potential" IMS Bearing Failure, you will hear both sides of the argument, replace your oil with the highest quality synthetic every 3,000miles, cut your oil filter and look for fragments, drive it like you stole it (should do that anyway) and given it is a 99 like mine with the dual row bearing (very low failure rate) don't worry about it OR do all the above and also find a good Porsche mechanic/shop that will drop the transmission and inspect it and then replace with LN Engineering Retrofit which I did and then not have to worry about it, re-check it every 50kmiles after........"IF" you become a victim of the "rare" IMS failure with the 99, $4700 will be a down payment for a new engine......
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Old 12-24-2015, 07:30 PM   #17
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Thanks for the comments and advise. I took it out for a fast drive on a country road this morning, nobody on the roads, was able to wind it up a bit.

No oil leaks that I can see. Have not seen the soft top yet, maybe I will pull the hard top Sunday and take a look. I expect it to be either very bad or very good. I prefer a hard top anyway. My plan is to get a zeintop. Purchase price gives me more room to pursue this sooner than planned.

I will check out the options list and post a pick of the soft top in a few days.

Thanks
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Old 12-25-2015, 04:58 AM   #18
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You prefer the hard top?!?! The whole point of the Box is it's a convertible! Why didn't you get a Cayman then? Would be much more rigid with the permanent roof.
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Old 12-25-2015, 05:51 AM   #19
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You prefer the hard top?!?! The whole point of the Box is it's a convertible! Why didn't you get a Cayman then? Would be much more rigid with the permanent roof.
I too prefer the hardtop. The whole point of a Boxster to me was a beautiful, great handling, lightweight German sports car, not because it was a convertible. In Wyoming, the hardtop is much more comfortable (and warm and quiet) in winter, and in summer, the high altitude sun fries you with the top down. The Cayman wasn't built before 2005, thus they are more expensive, and with the removable hardtop, the Boxster gives more options, should I really want a noisy, wind blasted sun baked spin (which I sometimes do) .

You got a beautiful car for a great price and it sounds like you know how to maintain it. Enjoy !


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Old 12-25-2015, 06:03 PM   #20
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I too prefer the hardtop. The whole point of a Boxster to me was a beautiful, great handling, lightweight German sports car, not because it was a convertible. In Wyoming, the hardtop is much more comfortable (and warm and quiet) in winter, and in summer, the high altitude sun fries you with the top down. The Cayman wasn't built before 2005, thus they are more expensive, and with the removable hardtop, the Boxster gives more options, should I really want a noisy, wind blasted sun baked spin (which I sometimes do) .

You got a beautiful car for a great price and it sounds like you know how to maintain it. Enjoy !


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