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987 Boxster S over Boxster Base and everything else in the world by US petrolhead on 04/21/2010. Trim: 2005 Porsche Boxster Base, Owned 5 years.
Pros: The engine noise and the smile you get the first time you take the engine over 5000 RPM, comfortable seats, very useful storage with two boots, can get 2 sets of golf clubs in the back trunk with a little planning, top up and down while driving under 30 mph, great MPG, amazing steering feedback (can feel the imperfections in the road), low wind noise with top down even at highway speeds, PCA membership discounts and events, cup holders, arm rests, side impact airbags, can put a kid in the front if you have to, predictable handling, and the most fun I've every had of on back-roads.
Cons: Expensive dealer oriented product, expensive maintenance, expensive oil changes (also a bid of work to do it yourself), expensive tires (liked the Michelin's better), expensive alignments (can't do it at Schwab's or Firestone), expensive parts, horn broke, seat part broke, worried about blowing up the engine (highly recommend buying a extended warranty to cover engine, started thinking about where I parked, socioeconomic pro's/con's, disliked tailpipe and wished it was the 986 boxster S one. Drove the 987 Boxster S and loved it. I chose to save some green and get the base. Every day I wished I had the Boxster S over the base. Spend the extra and get the S.
Overall review: Better than a Z4 because of engine note, ride, and steering feedback. Better than a Miata because of comfort, practicality, way more power, and way more exciting to drive. Better than a S2000 because of comfort, practicality, engine characteristics (Honda seemed to just make a ton of noise but not really go that fast), and more torque. Better than Nissan because of better window height for knuckle dragging, more storage, more comfortable, and arguably much better looking. Better than a Corvette because of reliability, ride not painful, build quality, transmission, and safety. Bottom line is buy the 987 Boxster S if you can afford it and maybe even if you can't afford it. I would gladly eat brown bag lunches and pinch some pennies to own one. Your biggest mistake would be to not test drive one.
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