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Old 11-03-2017, 05:15 PM   #1
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Which would you buy ?

2004 boxster s - 103k miles - 3 owner - all records - original IMS - clutch good but has 50k on it - tires newer, sport seats, sport exhaust, Carrera wheels - $10500

2002 boxster s - 70k miles - 2 owner - many records - original IMS - 2 minor accidents, new clutch, new top, good tires, good brakes- 56k msrp - $14000

2001 boxster base - 60k miles - 2 owner - many records - IMS fix, new brakes, needs rear tires, new battery, new alternator, new clutch - $11000

All things considered equal (assume cars are all good shape cosmetically), and PPI comes back equal. Which would you buy?


Last edited by pinksnyper; 11-03-2017 at 05:19 PM.
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Old 11-03-2017, 06:09 PM   #2
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If those are the only 3 choices... then probably number 1 with a strong desire to swap out the IMS. Not that I think IMSB's are as fragile as some claim, but I believe it's done a great job of getting that car to 100K and maybe it's time to retire it.

Number 1 seems like the biggest bang for the buck in this line up, but that's assuming they're all in decent condition.

I never buy a vehicle that has been in an accident and I think number 3 is a bit overpriced. If you can get at least $2-3K off of the asking price, then 3 would be back in the running.
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Old 11-04-2017, 02:06 AM   #3
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If those are the only 3 choices... then probably number 1 with a strong desire to swap out the IMS. Not that I think IMSB's are as fragile as some claim, but I believe it's done a great job of getting that car to 100K and maybe it's time to retire it.

Number 1 seems like the biggest bang for the buck in this line up, but that's assuming they're all in decent condition.

I never buy a vehicle that has been in an accident and I think number 3 is a bit overpriced. If you can get at least $2-3K off of the asking price, then 3 would be back in the running.
Should be noted that number 1 had the IMS seal.changed by Porsche at appx 50k ish. Not the bearing itself but....

In speaking to the mechanic of number 1 he told me a lot about the owner. A 70 year old man who only buys the best and really takes care of his cars. Has about 10 I'm told. That one has all the options I want, as it was heavily optioned.

Number 2 is overpriced in my opinion and those little accidents were very low speed but still, you're right.
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Old 11-04-2017, 02:06 AM   #4
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The 04, no question, and I'd quickly replace the clutch and IMS and go have some fun...
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Old 11-04-2017, 02:13 AM   #5
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The 04, no question, and I'd quickly replace the clutch and IMS and go have some fun...
How quickly if the clutch is still good and IMS seal replaced about 43k ago? What can I expect to pay from an Indy for the work, you think?
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Old 11-04-2017, 02:35 AM   #6
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There's also a fairly undocumented 05 boxster base with 47k miles for $13900 in great shape, but no records other than oil changes, and recently brake fluid flush, filters, plugs, and transaxle something or other.

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Old 11-04-2017, 03:53 AM   #7
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How quickly if the clutch is still good and IMS seal replaced about 43k ago? What can I expect to pay from an Indy for the work, you think?
it's piece of mind...how quickly do you want that?

3-4K depending on the shop and condition of the flywheel
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Old 11-04-2017, 04:06 AM   #8
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it's piece of mind...how quickly do you want that?

3-4K depending on the shop and condition of the flywheel
Thanks , I'll see what else the PPI comes back with and see if I can get the price down a bit.
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Old 11-04-2017, 04:25 AM   #9
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I would definitely go for the 2004 S.
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Old 11-04-2017, 05:21 AM   #10
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I would continue the search and if not then #1 2004S
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Old 11-04-2017, 05:26 AM   #11
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I would continue the search and if not then #1 2004S
Not particularly in a rush but trying to take advantage of "almost winter" pricing. What do you dislike?
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Old 11-04-2017, 05:47 AM   #12
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You'll regret not buying a non S versions so I would only look at an S. The 2002 and older have 5 chains with more ramps that wear. Did you mean the RMS seal was replaced 43K ago.
If it was the IMS seal that means whoever pulled the cap and replace 2 o"rings but not the bearing RUN FAST.
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Old 11-04-2017, 06:14 AM   #13
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You'll regret not buying a non S versions so I would only look at an S. The 2002 and older have 5 chains with more ramps that wear. Did you mean the RMS seal was replaced 43K ago.
If it was the IMS seal that means whoever pulled the cap and replace 2 o"rings but not the bearing RUN FAST.


RMS too but no I did mean IMS seal, and it was the Porsche dealership back in 2011

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Old 11-04-2017, 06:18 AM   #14
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Old 11-04-2017, 07:05 AM   #15
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+1 on buy the '04.

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... If it was the IMS seal that means whoever pulled the cap and replace 2 o"rings but not the bearing RUN FAST.
No need to RUN FAST.
As discussed here, standard procedure for a dealership service dept at that time:
http://986forum.com/forums/boxster-general-discussions/69795-service-records-porsche-ims-fix.html

It wouldn't worry me, but when I had a leaking IMS flange seal, I opted to have an independent shop replace the bearing since they were there anyway. I doubt that the owner of the '04 was presented this as an option.
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Old 11-04-2017, 01:51 PM   #16
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You'll regret not buying a non S versions so I would only look at an S. The 2002 and older have 5 chains with more ramps that wear. Did you mean the RMS seal was replaced 43K ago.
If it was the IMS seal that means whoever pulled the cap and replace 2 o"rings but not the bearing RUN FAST.
My personal feeling is this. If you want a weekend warrior, I would tell the buyer to look for an S model.

However, if you want a daily driver, you will be happy with either. Both have enough power to satisfy and both can be comparably equipped as far as creature comforts. And, depending on the year, the base will have more power than the S models in the listings.

That said, there are some cool options that make the S a bit better in my opinion. And all things being equal, I'd definitely pay a bit more for the S. The better brakes and improved suspension can mean a lot to some buyers, and the interior touches, like the white gauges (IMO), may be a draw as well.

I had a large amount of models to choose from and wound up buying a fully loaded manual 2005 base model. It didn't hurt that it also came with an adjustable custom after market suspension and exhaust. And since it is in pristine condition, I am very proud to show and sound it off. As a daily driver, it is an amazingly fun ride and I have had zero regrets.


But as far as the IMS seal goes, that wouldn't scare me off. Though I would have to change out the IMS on that particular model and factor that into the total purchase price (which, in my opinion, still makes the 2004S a good purchase).

100K on an original IMS is good, but I think at some point, you're just pressing your luck on what should be considered a wearable item.
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Old 11-04-2017, 02:48 PM   #17
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Looks like the seal was done but not the bearing.

Owned both a base and an S (and my base was "only" a 2.5). Difference in enjoyment: Not much at all. I am not a racer. It was a 20 miles to work daily car with some joyrides on the twisties but no DE or race or stop light contests. Some 250 mile one way trips too.
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Old 11-04-2017, 02:58 PM   #18
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My personal feeling is this. If you want a weekend warrior, I would tell the buyer to look for an S model.

However, if you want a daily driver, you will be happy with either. Both have enough power to satisfy and both can be comparably equipped as far as creature comforts. And, depending on the year, the base will have more power than the S models in the listings.

That said, there are some cool options that make the S a bit better in my opinion. And all things being equal, I'd definitely pay a bit more for the S. The better brakes and improved suspension can mean a lot to some buyers, and the interior touches, like the white gauges (IMO), may be a draw as well.

I had a large amount of models to choose from and wound up buying a fully loaded manual 2005 base model. It didn't hurt that it also came with an adjustable custom after market suspension and exhaust. And since it is in pristine condition, I am very proud to show and sound it off. As a daily driver, it is an amazingly fun ride and I have had zero regrets.


But as far as the IMS seal goes, that wouldn't scare me off. Though I would have to change out the IMS on that particular model and factor that into the total purchase price (which, in my opinion, still makes the 2004S a good purchase).

100K on an original IMS is good, but I think at some point, you're just pressing your luck on what should be considered a wearable item.
Great insight ! Question: does having the IMS seal change at 53k prolong the life of the bearing itself in theory? For example of the clutch has like another bit of life in it, I wouldn't want to jump on changing it all so quickly.
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Old 11-04-2017, 03:36 PM   #19
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At what price does the 02 S become the better choice?
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Old 11-05-2017, 01:22 PM   #20
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Great insight ! Question: does having the IMS seal change at 53k prolong the life of the bearing itself in theory? For example of the clutch has like another bit of life in it, I wouldn't want to jump on changing it all so quickly.
There are some who would argue the seal should simply be removed, since the bearing itself is likely to get oil soaked (and therefore loose any grease it's packed with). the thought here is, without a seal, the IMSB would get far more lubrication. So, depending on who you ask, the seal being replaced can be either a good thing or a bad one. Regardless, the IMS bearing is still the original and while you may get another 100K out of it, you may not. It all comes down to how much you wish to gamble.

I'm willing to take my original IMS to the 100K mark or until the clutch needs to be replaced; whichever condition occurs first. If the IMS detonates on my car before then, I'll simply replace the engine since the rest of the car is in such good condition. And that's the gamble I'm willing to take.


As far as your follow-up question on the '02, I would like to see a drop of 4K or more before I would ever consider a car that's been in two accidents and then I would joy ride the hell out of it first to feel the car out. Even minor accidents can impact the overall handling. I've never, ever, been happy with the handling of any of my previous cars after they've been repaired following a collision.


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