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Discussion Starter #1
I know the instinct is to always get the fastest version of whatever car I am buying that I can afford and I have always followed this inclination whether it was a Camaro (Z/28) Golf (Golf R) Audi (S4) etc. These cars have also always been faster than the vast majority of cars around them.

However, after spending 2 1/2 years with my ND Miata, I am starting to question whether my desire for a Boxster S or GTS is misguided as opposed to getting the Base model. My Miata is not much faster than a GTI, yet it feels faster than the Audi S4 that I had (even though I know it is not, by a long shot). I attribute this feeling to the weight difference and rawness of the Miata. You feel like you are going twice as fast as you are actually going.

This brings me to my Boxster purchase dilemma. Setting aside the cost differences, I was gravitating towards the GTS trim simply because it is the highest performing trim. But knowing that I will only be driving on the street, and also given that I really enjoy winding a car out whenever possible, I am wondering if getting the GTS might be a mistake from a driving enjoyment standpoint. For the same reason I have decided against something like a Corvette (among other reasons), would an S/GTS be simply too much car to drive hard on the streets without constantly risking a ticket and would a Base trim actually be more enjoyable for me due to the ability to enjoy more of the straight line performance of the car more often?

The Base trim seems to be about as fast as my old S4 was (~13 second quarter mile time), which is certainly plenty fast for a street car, but would I regret not going for the faster versions?

Equipment-wise, I would build the Base trim with all the GTS performance goodies (PASM, Sport Chrono, 20" wheels). So aside from slightly smaller brakes, the only real functional difference is in straight line speed.

I am not really asking anyone to decide for me, but rather I would like to just get some feedback from everyone's combined experience and opinions.

Thanks!
 

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I know you'll get lots of good insight from both perspectives, let me just point out a few things I think are important.

The 2.5 gains displacement in bore, not stroke, so is more over-square and has larger valves (all dimensions shared with the 3.8 911 Turbo/S/GT2). Coupled with the VTG technology, this effects how power is delivered, not just peak torque and hp. Some have suggested it accounts for the S/GTS feeling less lag -- I think you'd have to A/B both engines back-to-back to tell if it's something you notice.

If you are a manual driver, you might consider if Sport Chrono lends more of its value-add to PDK -- in fact if you want to do your own throttle blips on downshift (in Sport mode) then SC is actually problematic as that feature cannot be switched-off.

My advice is get as much driving time as possible and go by how it feels. Off the track I tend to doubt whether you'd even notice any of the GTS package of handling options, whereas more power is always felt (and appreciated) even if you don't run it to redline. Many people (including me, initially) say the 2.0 is more than enough power for public roads and that is true as an abstraction, but having ended-up with an S there is a visceral feeling of power that adds to the driving experience at any speed.

Finally -- and this is entirely an intangible -- in my view the VTG technology is *the* single most advanced and differentiated bit of hardware kit deployed in the entire 9A2 line of turbo Porsches.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I know you'll get lots of good insight from both perspectives, let me just point out a few things I think are important.

The 2.5 gains displacement in bore, not stroke, so is more over-square and has larger valves (all dimensions shared with the 3.8 911 Turbo/S/GT2). Coupled with the VTG technology, this effects how power is delivered, not just peak torque and hp. Some have suggested it accounts for the S/GTS feeling less lag -- I think you'd have to A/B both engines back-to-back to tell if it's something you notice.

If you are a manual driver, you might consider if Sport Chrono lends more of its value-add to PDK -- in fact if you want to do your own throttle blips on downshift (in Sport mode) then SC is actually problematic as that feature cannot be switched-off.

My advice is get as much driving time as possible and go by how it feels. Off the track I tend to doubt whether you'd even notice any of the GTS package of handling options, whereas more power is always felt (and appreciated) even if you don't run it to redline.
Great information, especially about the larger bore, thanks!
 

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You cant get Pasm/Spasm on the base model, so you know.
And in my opinion thats a must, also ptv is nice to have.


Sport chrono, i think its overrated also you need connect+ Navi to enable all the SC stuff.
The car does not go faster with SC.....


I can break down more if you want to.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
You cant get Pasm/Spasm on the base model, so you know.
And in my opinion thats a must, also ptv is nice to have.


Sport chrono, i think its overrated also you need connect+ Navi to enable all the SC stuff.
The car does not go faster with SC.....


I can break down more if you want to.
In the US it appears you can get PASM on the base model:

 

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I just posted on another thread that the handling options like PTV, LSD and PASM are for me probably more important than more power in the light of the handling transformation over standard

more power is always good - I went for the CGTS as I could afford it and thought might be a little better on residuals - and I just plain liked the look of the thing

I think a base model with all the handling toys would be a great car and still plenty fast for the road - I just fear when you come to sell that all the handling parts might not interest the average pre owned base Boxster buyer

Tim
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I just posted on another thread that the handling options like PTV, LSD and PASM are for me probably more important than more power in the light of the handling transformation over standard

more power is always good - I went for the CGTS as I could afford it and thought might be a little better on residuals - and I just plain liked the look of the thing

I think a base model with all the handling toys would be a great car and still plenty fast for the road - I just fear when you come to sell that all the handling parts might not interest the average pre owned base Boxster buyer

Tim
It is funny that you bring that up because there is always that consideration of whether you build the car for yourself or for the next buyer (resale value). If you are leasing, it doesn't matter, but if you are buying, it very well could be an expensive proposition to consider.

But, at the end of the day, I do want to build the car to my liking.

Then again, I can't imagine what kind of a hit the previous owner of this unit suffered:



Not so much the color, but the painted vents.
 

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In the US it appears you can get PASM on the base model:
About time!
I checked the configurator and your right :)
Must be pretty new, or i mix it up with something else (dont think so)


I just posted on another thread that the handling options like PTV, LSD and PASM are for me probably more important than more power in the light of the handling transformation over standard

more power is always good - I went for the CGTS as I could afford it and thought might be a little better on residuals - and I just plain liked the look of the thing

I think a base model with all the handling toys would be a great car and still plenty fast for the road - I just fear when you come to sell that all the handling parts might not interest the average pre owned base Boxster buyer

Tim

Thums up on that one!
I must say that Spasm have a better feel then then Pasm.
 

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We changed from the 981 to the 718 and the model we chose was spec'd to a very high standard.

This then caused me to argue that I could have a reasonable spec'd S or a 3 year old 911 SC2. The dealership had each of those mentioned. The dealer stated that the 911 was old technology and that the 718 was ample. The S was great, but that we didn't need it, that the basic 718 PDK Sport Chrono was as much as you will ever need.

Six months down the line I cannot argument and I still smile when we get it out of the garage...
 

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My dealer told me exactly what kevjohn's did--and like kevjohn my base Boxster still gives me smiles every day. I've never been close (OK, maybe once or twice when I knew the road was clear of traffic and police) to the car's limits in 18,000 Km. I still haven't squealed the tyres on a corner though in street driving.)

Check the stats from Car and Driver's detailed test sheets and see how much performance you need/want.
 

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I know you'll get lots of good insight from both perspectives, let me just point out a few things I think are important.

The 2.5 gains displacement in bore, not stroke, so is more over-square and has larger valves (all dimensions shared with the 3.8 911 Turbo/S/GT2). Coupled with the VTG technology, this effects how power is delivered, not just peak torque and hp. Some have suggested it accounts for the S/GTS feeling less lag -- I think you'd have to A/B both engines back-to-back to tell if it's something you notice.

If you are a manual driver, you might consider if Sport Chrono lends more of its value-add to PDK -- in fact if you want to do your own throttle blips on downshift (in Sport mode) then SC is actually problematic as that feature cannot be switched-off.
The step up to the 2.5 provides the largest gulf in character between the models. The smaller motor needs to be caned a bit before it comes into its own. The VTG + 2.5 simply allows more flexibility to putter around or put the hammer down. Most everything else comes down to personal taste. I went in thinking I'd order a base with pasm/ptv/sc with a few amenities and very rapidly came to the conclusion that I simply had to have the 2.5.

As for the Sport Chrono on the 6MT, its a bit of a double edged sword and more than a little annoying in terms of decision making. ZuffenHouseRules is either 100% correct or 50% depending on how you view things. In two of the four driving modes, sport and sport+ throttle blips are mandatory. So if the first thing you do is get in the car and select S, its 100% true. However, and as ass backwards as it might seem, in the normal mode, throttle blips are not and cannot be enabled. In individual mode, among other things, you can elect to turn on or off the blips which is why I typically I drive in I.

So whats the problem? Well, unfortunately the more interesting parameters of Sport+, dynamic engine mounts and PTV Sport modes are, AFAICT, not configurable for individual unless you preselect sport+ which forces rev matching. So if you want the max attack configuration, but no rev matching, you effectively are out of luck. OTOH if you dont spec SC, you don't get the mounts and more importantly, at least for me, you don't get the PSM hooligan setting.

So its a more than a bit annoying that you can't independently defeat rev matching in all modes, but in my view SC is still a must for the other things it brings to the table. No doubt others might see it differently.
 

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I ordered my base 718 Boxster with MT and only the Sport Exhaust as a paid option. I am more than happy with the car and the Sport Exhaust. I traded a MT 2012 Boxster (987.2) and was told it would be worth more if it had an automatic transmission. Like wise, the dealer wanted to sell me a PDK equipped 718 but at my age I was determined to purchase what I wanted. The 718 is superior in every way to the 987.2 so I felt that an S model was unnecessary. That, of course, is a personal decision.
 

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When i finally decided my next toy was going to be a Cayman i did all the homework i could. YouTube videos, test drives, went all of NC looking at different versions with different options and ended up buying a car out of state. I didn't drive the base as in the past when i bought a base car - i regretted it. Only for resale value and lack of motor, etc. I drove a few S and only 1 GTS. There isn't much difference between the S and GTS HP and Torque...not really noticeable...but I believe the resale value will be more on the GTS (rarer, etc). I was lucky. I found THE CAR i was searching for and had narrowed down to... a one owner (only had 150 miles on it and he didn't like the size of the car - rich people...geesh) - GT silver, 6MT, leather seats (i am not a fan of the GTS Alcantara) etc. I got it (because it was titled) for a SIGNIFICANT discount - less than many of the Cayman S I was seeing where they added all the extras (wheels, exhaust, etc).

No way i could have went wrong either way, but for me - i am in the same boat - buy the best one that you can afford. The GTS fit in that category. I got a used car with less miles than most new cars that are being test driven off the lot. Brand new condition...the freaking manuals were still sealed in the plastic LOL.

I love these cars. I love this GTS. I love that it is just a little more rare than an S. You can't go wrong either way.
 

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Base is too fast for the street so that argument is silly.

I felt that the S/GTS had a lot less turbo lag than the base model and that alone was worth the upgrade. Then I spec'd the S and GTS to how I wanted it and the GTS was about $1,000 cheaper. Had the GTS been more than $1,000 more than the S I wanted then I probably would have stayed with the S.
 

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My two cents. I am about to take delivery of my 5th Cayman. I have owned 08 CS, 2012 Cayman R, 2014 Base, 2016 Base and 2019 delivering next week assuming ship hits Jacksonville as scheduled tomorrow. The 08 CS was 295 HP, the R was 330 HP, the 14 and 16 Base 275hp. The 2019 300HP and, importantly, 280Lb-Ft of torque at 1950RPM. If you take a look at the 718 Base performance 0-60, it is only rated as one tenth of a second slower than the 981 S and actually has 7 more pounds of torque than the 981 S at much lower RPM. I have been quite happy with the 981 Base (both) so, 'only getting the 2.0L' is no problem.
 

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I think it’s easy to forget that the new base is on par performance wise with the outgoing S. I also think the base 2.0 is somewhat underrated as far as power output is concerned. I have no regrets with our base model, it handles beautifully, the interior is identical to the more expensive models. Being lighter than the S/GTS also narrows the difference the HP increase makes in the larger displacement motors. It is slower than both my 135is and Stingray but that’s not the point. It turns better than both of them.
 

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I am a Cayman guy. My 2016 981 series Cayman was my first Porsche. I ordered a base model with no options and I love it. At the time, I was new to the brand and I was intimidated by the cost of the Cayman S, even though I preferred the sound and the acceleration. I decided to "start small and work my way up".

Since then I have learned a lot about driving and owning a Porsche, including attending a two day sport driving school at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham Alabama. It was phenomenal and I want to go do it again. You only go around once in life.......!

Now I want more mid-range torque. The 718 base and the S model are both great cars. We drove both models in Birmingham. They make power very differently than the 981. I decided to step up to the S model, this time. It is a still a little bit hard for me to justify the additional cost but I am looking forward to the added performance. You can't go wrong either way. And you can always trade.

I am looking forward to having maybe too much power and not being able to use it all rather than wondering if I should have gotten the S model to begin with.
 

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The step up to the 2.5 provides the largest gulf in character between the models. The smaller motor needs to be caned a bit before it comes into its own. The VTG + 2.5 simply allows more flexibility to putter around or put the hammer down. Most everything else comes down to personal taste. I went in thinking I'd order a base with pasm/ptv/sc with a few amenities and very rapidly came to the conclusion that I simply had to have the 2.5.

As for the Sport Chrono on the 6MT, its a bit of a double edged sword and more than a little annoying in terms of decision making. ZuffenHouseRules is either 100% correct or 50% depending on how you view things. In two of the four driving modes, sport and sport+ throttle blips are mandatory. So if the first thing you do is get in the car and select S, its 100% true. However, and as ass backwards as it might seem, in the normal mode, throttle blips are not and cannot be enabled. In individual mode, among other things, you can elect to turn on or off the blips which is why I typically I drive in I.

So whats the problem? Well, unfortunately the more interesting parameters of Sport+, dynamic engine mounts and PTV Sport modes are, AFAICT, not configurable for individual unless you preselect sport+ which forces rev matching. So if you want the max attack configuration, but no rev matching, you effectively are out of luck. OTOH if you dont spec SC, you don't get the mounts and more importantly, at least for me, you don't get the PSM hooligan setting.

So its a more than a bit annoying that you can't independently defeat rev matching in all modes, but in my view SC is still a must for the other things it brings to the table. No doubt others might see it differently.

I agree. Not being able to turn off rev matching would be a deal killer for me for Sport Chrono. Sports cars should have the ability to turn off all driving aids and nannies.
 

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I was in the same position, wondering if a base was enough, or whether to spend the extra and get the S. Being fiscally conservative by nature (I think my wife calls it cheap), the base was appealing, but I didn't want to buy a base and regret it. First, I realized that no matter what car one has, one can almost always get more power by spending more money- whether its a more powerful model, aftermarket parts and tunes or a completely different car. I think the key is getting a car that meets your needs and is within your budget. For me, my Cayman was going to be primarily a road car, with occasional longer road trips. To see if the base was "enough" for me, I went to the PEC and drove a base, considering it an extended test drive. In that venue, I had the opportunity to experience all the performance that car could deliver. I came away being pleasantly satisfied that a base engine was plenty for my needs and placed my order. After five months of ownership, I'm convinced I made the right choice for me.
 
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