2009 Porsche Boxster

Base RWD 2-Dr Convertible H6 man trans

Base RWD 2-Dr Convertible H6 man trans

2009 porsche boxster Reviews and News

0902 01 Pl+2009 Porsche Boxster+front Three Quarter View
0902 01 Z+2009 Porsche Boxster+front Three Quarter View
Symptoms of a split personality usually call for a visit to the shrink. But at Porsche, vacillating between mid-engine and rear-engine convictions has proven healthy for the soul.
Sixty years ago, when Dr. Ferdinand Porsche and his son Ferry collaborated on their first production model, the goal was to exploit lessons they had learned racing mid-engine Auto Unions. When that didn't pan out, the Porsche 356 arrived with a rear-engine layout that was subsequently passed on to the immortal 911. Then in 1953, Ferry was finally able to scratch his mid-engine itch in the 550 Spyder, Porsche's first racing car. That branch of the family tree still thrives in the RS Spyder that won last year's American Le Mans LMP2 championship.
For its roadgoing models, Porsche uses trickle-down technology to feed its schizo habit. The new engine and PDK (Porsche Doppelkupplungsgetriebe) dual-clutch transmission recently introduced for the 911 arrive wrapped in modestly face-lifted Boxsters and Caymans this March. As a preview of coming attractions, Porsche offered us a few hot laps in one Boxster S around Willow Springs Raceway's tight Streets of Willow course.
Consider this the second coming of the 987-series platform that Porsche introduced in 2005. While the body and the chassis are largely carryover, new lamps and fascias provide a fresh appearance and improved night visibility for the Boxster/Cayman quartet. Inside, the 911 dash and console upgrades play here nicely, albeit in a cost-conscious form.
There are power and tech upgrades galore. Larger front brake rotors and a six-speed manual transmission are now standard. The seven-speed PDK automatic, which costs an extra $3420, gives two-pedal owners better control, improved acceleration, higher cruising mileage, and a launch mode for smoking the rear tires.
The base Boxster and Cayman receive power and displacement bumps, while S-model engines clear the 300-hp hurdle for the first time thanks to direct fuel injection, a higher compression ratio, lighter moving parts, and reduced friction. The 3.4-liter flat six's redline has been raised to 7400 rpm.
Willow provided an excellent refresher about why we love Boxsters old and new. They're light on their feet, impeccably balanced, and easy to drive to and through the limits of adhesion. Compared with their big brothers (911s), the steering is more communicative and the tail is less likely to pass you by when control is relinquished to Sir Isaac Newton. A new limited-slip differential working in conjunction with revised suspension calibrations enables heavier corner-exit throttle tromping without wobble or wheel spin.
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The PDK box's track mode holds each gear to the redline, and downshifts entering bends are smoother and quicker than you can say "heel and toe." That's great, because maintaining a grip on the wheel and tapping the spoke-mounted shift buttons on cue is a challenge. When this shortcoming was voiced to R&D boss Wolfgang Durheimer, he confided that a fix - optional paddle shifters - is in the works. We are thrilled.
The $64 question is whether these Boxster/Cayman improvements will be enough to sway Porsche's die-hard rear-engine contingent in favor of the company's theoretically superior driveline configuration. We're guessing no. But as long as Porsche continues serving both camps, we have nothing to complain about.
0811 03 Pl+2009 Porsche Boxster+front Three Quarter View
0811 03 Z+2009 Porsche Boxster+front Three Quarter View
Trickle down can be a wonderful thing whether you're talking wealth, wisdom, power, or Porsches. Less than a year after the 911 received a major mechanical pick-me-up, Porsche engineers passed the lessons learned to the junior members of their sports car family. The 2009 Porsche Boxster benefits from more power, higher fuel efficiency, quicker acceleration, and the latest automatic transmission technology.
This is the second generation of Porsche's 987 platform introduced in 2005. While the unibody, suspension layout, and exterior metal is for the most part carryover, a host of alterations have been incorporated into the new editions of the Boxster, Boxster S, Cayman, and Cayman S.
Like the 911, these mid-engined models are all powered by a new third-generation water-cooled flat-six engine code-named 9A1. Ranging in displacement from 2.9-liters (Boxster and Cayman) to 3.8-liters (Carrera S), this engine uses the 118mm cylinder spacing common to all Porsche sixes dating back to the original 911 but with a host of updates, including a simpler cam drive and a two-piece cylinder block yielding lighter weight, reduced friction, and a higher (7400) redline. True to Porsche form, power and efficiency both rise.
0811 01 Z+2009 Porsche Boxster+rear View
Boxster and Cayman models are equipped with 2.9-liter versions of the new engine fed by port fuel injection and rated at 255 hp for the convertible and 265 hp in the coupe. That's a rise of 10 and 20 horsepower respectively over the 2008 models. Stepping up to the more expensive S models hikes the displacement to 3.4 liters and ups the power to 310 and 320 hp respectively, in no small part because the larger sixes benefit from direct fuel injection (straight into the combustion chamber rather than the intake port).
The other major powertrain news is a shift from Porsche's antiquated Tiptronic transmission to a new PDK (Porsche Doppelkupplungsgetriebe) 7-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission manufactured by ZF. Hang on for a long list of benefits: multiple shift modes, no interruption of power delivery during gear changes, a handy launch-control function, a 30-pound weight savings, quiet and efficient top-gear cruising, and a generally all-around pleasant disposition. What's not to like? PDK costs an extra $3420 and some of the hands-on driving fun is sacrificed to the gods of refinement and automation. Another issue is how you shift this automatic. The dual-slot console lever works fine but the buttons mounted in the steering wheel spokes do not. Pressing for a downshift and squeezing the back side of the spokes for an upshift, a throwback to Tiptronic, is counter-intuitive. Also, shuffling the wheel in the heat of cornering battle can result an accidental brush of a spoke button followed by an unintended shift.
0811 02 Z+2009 Porsche Boxster+front Three Quarter View
While to PDK or not will be the subject of endless bar debates, virtually every other 2009 mid-engined Porsche upgrade is a clear win. The new headlamp, taillamp, and fascia designs sharpen the exterior's visual sword while providing superior illumination and additional air flow to coolers and brakes. The center dash and console layout handed down from the 911 houses an optional 6.5-inch touch-sensitive navigation screen and a full range of Bluetooth, voice command, USB, and iPod connectivity functions. Base-model front brakes are larger, a limited-slip differential has been added to the options list, and creature comforts such as power-ventilated seats and an electrically heated steering wheel are now available. The six-speed manual-shift gear box also benefits from a light polish. Another benefit for 2009 models is the six-speed manual finds its way into the base Cayman and Boxster.
To provide an early taste test of its newest model range, Porsche offered one Boxster S equipped with the PDK automatic and half a day lapping the tight Streets of Willow road course. The first warm-up stint revealed a new snarl in the exhaust note and added hustle in this mid-engine Porsche's step. The combination of plus power and torque with a few pounds less weight and the new automatic transmission trims a couple of tenths off the run to sixty mph (a feat accomplished in 4.9 seconds according to Porsche). With the throttle indulged, the new engine swings its tach needle to the 7400 rpm redline with happy abandon. While the seven gear ratios are more widely spaced than in the manual box, there's plenty of energy available to pull strongly from well below the 4750 torque peak to well past the 7200 rpm maximum power point.
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Turn in is crisp and quick with only trace evidence of understeer. Thanks to the added weight carried by the front tires (versus the 911 clan), there's a satisfying level of communication from the road, through the steering, and into the driver's hands. Punching the Sport Plus button sharpens shift action and engages tight damper settings. Body roll is minimal, the seats do an excellent job of restraining the driver's torso during high-g maneuvers, and the chassis is calibrated to extract maximum force from all four tires. Aggressive use of the steering and throttle can induce hints of tail wag but the rotation rate is so deliberate that the drift never really threatens to venture past the point of no return. A brief throttle pressure modulation or a touch of countersteer gathers up the slide and resets the car's attitude. This is a sports car that not only makes novice drivers look cool and competent, it's also a willing partner for the track hound intent on polishing his or her skills.
The last bit of good news is surprisingly modest price increases. When they arrive in dealerships next March, the Boxster is expected to cost $47,550 (including destination) while the Boxster S should start at $57,650. That's a lot of Porsche for the money and about the best deal we've seen since premium gas dropped below $2 per gallon.
0908 01 Z+2009 Porsche Boxster S+front Three Quarter View
It's tough to think of a better way to celebrate 80-degree July weather than with one of Zuffenhausen's finest roadsters. The Porsche Boxster S is simply one of the most enjoyable ways to travel your favorite roads. Sure you can bomb along at 120 mph without much warning (aside from the howling wind), but the Boxster also rewards a responsible driver in a way that few fast cars can. Even at nearly legal speeds, the car's impeccable balance, grip, and road feel are a joy.
0908 01 Z+2009 Porsche Boxster S+front Three Quarter View
The Porsche Boxster has always been near perfection and this 2009 Boxter S is no exception. Although I must admit, I was disappointed to see that it was equipped with the PDK transmission instead of a traditional manual. Mechanically, PDK is a great transmission but, like Phil, I found the user-interface - especially the steering-wheel-mounted buttons - more awkward and difficult to use than paddles. So, as with most automated manuals, I played with it for a while but got frustrated and stayed in auto mode for the rest of my time in the car.
0908 03 Z+2009 Porsche Boxster S+front Three Quarter View
You could blindfold me, throw me in a car, fire up the engine, and I'll tell you if it's a Porsche or not. The distinct sound of a Porsche boxer six is one of the most recognizable sounds in the automotive world; it never gets old, and most importantly, it never disappoints. When the chance to drive a Porsche Boxster S for an evening arose, I jumped to the occasion. Then I giggled all the way to the parking garage with keys in hand.
0908 02 Z+2009 Porsche Boxster S+rear Three Quarter View
The Boxster's sterling reputation for balance, capability, and forgivingness is well earned. These traits pay off whether you're driving flat out or just cruising empty back roads. Anyone can feel like a great driver in this car by grabbing a lower gear, stepping on the accelerator, and rocketing through a corner.
0908 03 Z+2009 Porsche Boxster S+front Three Quarter View
2009 Porsche Boxster S
0908 01 Z+2009 Porsche Boxster S+front Three Quarter View
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0905 01 Z+2009 Porsche Boxster S+side View
0905 02 Z+1950 Porsche 356 Speedster+front Three Quarter View
0905 06 Z+2009 Porsche Boxster S+interior View
0905 04 Z+2009 Porsche Boxster S+wheel
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0905 09 Z+2009 Porsche Boxster S+rear Three Quarter View

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2009 Porsche Boxster
2009 Porsche Boxster
Base RWD 2-Dr Convertible H6
19 MPG City | 27 MPG Hwy
Top Ranking Vehicles - MPG
2009 Porsche Boxster
2009 Porsche Boxster
Base RWD 2-Dr Convertible H6
19 MPG City | 27 MPG Hwy
2009 Porsche Boxster
2009 Porsche Boxster
Base RWD 2-Dr Convertible H6
Top Ranking Vehicles - Price

2009 Porsche Boxster Specifications

Quick Glance:
2.9L H6Engine
Fuel economy City:
19 MPG
Fuel economy Highway:
27 MPG
255 hp @ 6400rpm
214 ft lb of torque @ 4400rpm
  • Air Conditioning
  • Power Windows
  • Power Locks
  • Power Seats
  • Steering Wheel Tilt
  • Cruise Control
  • Sunroof (optional)
  • ABS
  • Stabilizer Front
  • Stabilizer RearABS
  • Electronic Traction Control
  • Electronic Stability Control
  • Locking Differential (optional)
  • Limited Slip Differential (optional)
  • Airbag Driver
  • Airbag Passenger
  • Airbag Side Front
  • Airbag Side Rear (optional)
  • Radio
  • CD Player
  • CD Changer (optional)
  • DVD (optional)
  • Navigation (optional)
50,000 miles / 48 months
50,000 miles / 48 months
Unlimited miles / 120 months
50,000 miles / 48 months
NHTSA Rating Front Driver
Not Tested
NHTSA Rating Front Passenger
Not Tested
NHTSA Rating Front Side
Not Tested
NHTSA Rating Rear Side
Not Tested
NHTSA Rating Rollover
Not Tested
IIHS Front Moderate Overlap
IIHS Overall Side Crash
IIHS Rear Crash
NHTSA Rating Overall
Not Applicable
IIHS Roof Strength
IIHS Best Pick

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