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Old 11-27-2014, 04:56 AM   #1
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2,5 or 3,2 for track day car?

Hi guys! I am George Papamihalis and i own a motorsport business in Greece.
We are renting formula cars in track days and i am looking to prepare 3 cars for track day use, putting a roll cage, racing seats, belts and extinguishing system.
I do not care about performance in order to avoid more expenses in functional and damages.
I just want these cars as educational and friendly to amateur drivers.

I was looking for 2,5 1999 - 2002 but a friend advice me strictly to prefer 3,2 2006 because it gives much much better driving percept with a better quality in production and it has better and adjustable shock absorbers.
In a few worlds he told me that is a totally different car.

I do not like his advice because 3,2 is:
  • more expensive to buy
  • more powerful so it will consume more tires and fuel
  • not so many cars in the local market

For my needs is it better 2,5 or 3.2?

What is your opinion?

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Old 11-27-2014, 07:46 AM   #2
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The 2.5 is going to be much cheaper and is still a great track car. The Boxster spec series uses the 2.5 for a reason. Good luck.
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Old 11-27-2014, 08:01 AM   #3
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the 3.2 is potentially more reliable. better oil cooler, additional radiator, larger brakes, forged pistons (2.5 has cast pistons). also, the 3.2 came later in the design cycle; earlier cars have failures not as often seen in the later cars - d-chunk failure, more prone to ims issues, etc.

the spec series does use the early 2.5 cars, but note that they incorporate many of the 3.2 improvements - additional radiator, larger oil cooler, ims retrofit. I would factor in the cost of these modifications when evaluating the cost of purchasing and maintaining an S vs non-S car.

also, the S has improved suspension geometry, but the shocks are still non-adjustable. and construction quality is the same with both, although trim levels may differ.
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Old 11-27-2014, 10:10 AM   #4
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For the purposes you need the 2.5 is more than enough, and for the price diffrence you can allocate more to upkeep.
S cars are little twice as expsensive as 2.5s sometimes and it simply isn't twice the car, at least when it comes to track use.
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Old 11-27-2014, 11:12 AM   #5
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brakes on 3.2 are bigger so less heat issues in the hands of inexperienced drivers. pads are $10 more per set. 3.2 six-speed is a much stronger transmission than the audi 5-speed. more parts interchangeable w/ the 996 - brakes, transmission, engine - so potentially better availability. stronger engine mechanically so should suffer abuse better. 3.2 needs a 17" tire because of the bigger brakes, but wear should be *about* the same - cars should be at same speed through and out of corners regardless of engine size.

cheaper to get into a 2.5 but a 3.2 is a stronger car. your $10 savings on brake pads might soon be offset by a dropped transmission. check some of the spec racing threads here if you want a heads-up on 2.5 engine durability and transmission longevity (most spec cars run coolers to keep the transmissions alive). and, as there is no spec boxster community in europe, I would suggest that your 3.2 would have better resale if you want to move on. full disclosure: I've never driven a 2.5, but the only time my 3.2 sees a public road is too/from the track and it has been a treat (knock on wood). but really, if you want an inexpensive school car, build some miatas - by far the best bang for buck you will ever spend, and comes with factory support (unlike Porsche).
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Old 11-27-2014, 01:02 PM   #6
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The cost of maintaining an older Porsche can be alarming! So I say focus on the newest cars possible. Also the tighter the track the less the motorsport improvements of an S matter. I've heard many times that the 2.5's sound the best. You can run 15" wheels on a base car and this may save $. Porsche made improvement to these cars every year- need I say more? Your idea sounds good and will probably sell Porsche's! Maybe you can work out something with THEM...like 3 spanking new base Caymans!
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Old 11-28-2014, 05:45 AM   #7
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Both are viable track cars. The 2.5L is used exclusively for the SPEC racing series and has proven to be both fun and pretty reliable. 3.2L cars have more motor, more gears, more heat, and more brakes. I might get one of each and price them differently. Let your customers decide which they prefer/will pay for. $300/day for a 2.5L or $400/day for the 3.2L??
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Old 11-28-2014, 07:02 AM   #8
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The idea of getting both seems smart, you could use the two cars as a sort of stepping stone. It would allow drivers to feel what a fairly similar car feels like with more power and see how it reacts differently.
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Old 11-29-2014, 12:35 PM   #9
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Start with 1 2.5L version, cheapest initial investment & starter Box for you & customers also.

You will learn what will be your next move.

IF everything goes perfectly your biggest expense will be tires & brake parts which are considerably cheaper for the 2.5L Box. Only plus for the 3.2 Box is stability control & more speed/power.

My wife is Greek & we are way past due for a trip there, I am a Boxster mechanic/engine builder, maybe we can help each other!

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Last edited by BYprodriver; 11-29-2014 at 12:37 PM. Reason: offer
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