- Capable, confident handling
- Classic styling
- Strong acceleration
- Perfect tactile experience
- Lack of storage spaces
- Wind and road noise
- Sound systems
The 2010 Porsche Boxster is a fun, attractive, and capable roadster-everything you want it to be.
TheCarConnection.com has researched a wide range of reviews from enthusiast and consumer sites around the Web to bring you a comprehensive Full Review of the 2010 Porsche Boxster. TheCarConnection.com's editors have also driven the Boxster and included their own driving opinions in this Bottom Line to help you make the most informed buying decision possible.
Classic styling and a simple interior show the 2010 Porsche Boxster's strong connections to its sports car heritage. Clean lines and flowing curves look like they have sprung to life from the designer's table. An all-new model, the Boxster Spyder, ups the performance ante this year, as a more hardcore, lightweight performance version above the Boxster S, and it gets an appearance package including unique graphics to distinguish it at first sight.
Though it's Porsche's least expensive car, the Boxster is anything but cheap or cheaply made. Its base engine, a 255-horsepower 2.9-liter flat-six-cylinder, can be paired with either a six-speed manual transmission, or the high-tech seven-speed Porsche Doppelkupplungsgetriebe (PDK) dual-clutch automatic transmission. Acceleration with either is brisk, with Porsche quoting 5.8-second 0-60 mph runs for the manual and 5.5 seconds with the PDK. An optional Sport Plus package trims the PDK's time down to a mere 5.3 seconds.
The Boxster S is propelled by a larger, 310-horsepower, 3.4-liter six-cylinder available with the same transmissions as the standard Boxster. It accelerates to 60 mph with the manual is just 5.0 seconds; with the PDK, it takes 4.9 seconds, and with the Sport Plus package, that's shaved to a scant 4.7 seconds.
The all-new Boxster Spyder gets another bump in output to match the hardtop Cayman S at 320 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque. Weight for this highest-performance Boxster variant is trimmed to just 2,811 pounds, 176 pounds lighter than the Boxster S it's based on. That's enough to clip 0.2 second off the 0-60 mph times. A standard limited-slip differential and 20 mm lower sport suspension make the Spyder even more responsive. To get the weight savings, though, Porsche offers some concessions to comfort; the air conditioning is removed, and lightweight seats replace the comfortable but heavy standard-issue items. External weight-saving changes include the removal of daytime running lights and fog lamps, and the electric-powered soft top is swapped out for a manual version.
No matter which version you choose, the 2010 Porsche Boxster has brilliant road manners. Whether you're attacking a twisty back road or cruising the boulevard, the steering is natural, brakes strong and intuitive, and the manual transmission shifts with ease. Fuel economy is 19/27 mpg city and highway for the base Boxster with the manual, or 20/29 mpg with the PDK. The Boxster S scores 19/26 mpg with the manual and 20/29 with the PDK. The all-new Spyder hasn't yet been rated by the EPA.
You'll love the work environment of the 2010 Boxster, too. In all but the Spyder, the power convertible top is easy to use, the seats are well-bolstered with available sport seat upgrades, and the low front hood hides a decent amount of cargo space. Easy-to-use controls are placed conveniently at hand, and though the audio system leaves a bit to be desired and offers too many buttons to manage it, the experience isn't spoiled. In typical Porsche style, the Boxster's interior can be tweaked and tuned to fit almost any individual's style. A wide range of finishes, materials, trims, and themes can be chosen or designed by the buyer.
The list of standard equipment is extensive, exceeded only by the options available. Air conditioning is standard on all but the Spyder, as is a CD stereo, rear spoiler, partial-leather upholstery, heated washer nozzles, and locking alloy wheels.
Safety equipment is abundant, too, with standard anti-lock brakes and stability control, plus front, side, and head-protecting side-impact airbags mounted in the door window sills.
The Boxster hasn't been subjected to crash testing by either the IIHS or NHTSA, but fatality and injury statistics from accident data show Porsche drivers have historically fared well in accidents or managed to avoid them altogether.