Porsche Boxster S 3.4 PDK Review
Home Improvement

Story and photos by Raymond Lai
25 Jun 2012

With the latest generation model, the Porsche Boxster enters its third incarnation. Raymond Lai discovers that the new model is infinitely better than before.

Introduction, styling

Since the 914 of 1969, Porsche has always offered an entry-level sports car model sitting underneath the 911 range in its line-up. The 914 was a mid-engined, targa top two-seater sports car and together with the 550 Spyder, can be considered to be the spiritual forebears of the modern day Boxster. The 914 lasted till 1976 when it was replaced by the 924, which evolved into the 944 and 968 models later on.

The 968 was offered until 1995, with the Boxster replacing it as Porsche’s entry-level model a year later. Since 1996, the Boxster has been a great success for Porsche – it was even the brand’s biggest volume seller for the first seven years of its life till the Cayenne came onto the scene in 2003.  

This year sees the Boxster entering its third incarnation. Dubbed internally as the 981, the Boxster is once again available as a base 2.7-litre model and a more powerful 3.4-litre Boxster S variant. The new model features a completely new lightweight body and revamped chassis that should enhance its driving dynamics and performance among other factors.

Outwardly, the new Boxster looks markedly different from its seven-year old predecessor thanks to its shorter overhangs, 60mm longer wheelbase and wider tracks, 40mm at the front, 18mm at the rear, which in turn give the new car a sleeker silhouette and flatter, lower profile. In addition, the windscreen is flatter and is positioned 100mm further forward, resulting in the Boxster being up to 13mm lower overall.

Up front, the new model features a nose that is inspired by the latest generation 911’s as well as the iconic Carrera GT supercar. The flanks feature larger side intakes with distinctive indentations on the door to guide air into these inlets to cool the flat-six motor sitting behind the driver. Once again, the design of these intakes seem to draw inspiration from the Carrera GT’s. 19-inch wheels are fitted as standard on the Boxster S, with 20s fitted optional like on the car tested here. The new Boxster looks at its most distinctive at the rear where the active rear spoiler’s edges extending on either side to become part of the tail lamps. As previously, the Boxster S is recognized by its twin exhaust pipes while the base Boxster features a single oval-shaped pipe. 

Thanks to design details inspired by the Carrera GT and its more muscular stance, the Boxster makes for a sensational looking roadster that looks significantly more purposeful than any of the previous generation models.

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Engine Capacity 3436cc
Engine Type Flat 6
Compression Ratio 12.5:1
Power 315bhp @ 6700rpm
Torque 360Nm @ 4500rpm
Power to Weight 233.3 bhp per ton


Acceleration 4.8s (0-100 km/h)
Top Speed 277 km/h
Fuel Consumption (combined) 12.5 km/L

Misc Technical Data

Transmission 7 -speed Porsche Doppelkupplung (PDK)
Drive Type MR


Body Type Cabriolet
(L x W x H)
(4374 x 1801 x 1281) mm
Wheelbase 247 mm
Kerb Weight 1350 kg
Fuel Tank Capacity 64 L


Brakes (Front) Ventilated Discs
Brakes (Rear) Ventilated Discs