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The 2011 Porsche Boxster is a rare sportscar--emotional and rational. All the numbers prove out its spectacular performance, but it's not until you get a hand on its wheel and a foot on its pedals that those those figures turn into a huge, never-fade grin.
It starts from the fenders, just like the ones you've seen in historic images of Porsches past. They're sculpted to bring up the past without using a dredger, and they're faired in with modern, elliptical headlamps and rhomboid taillamps that cap the shape's tidy, race-inspired surfaces. The more the Boxster ages, the more it gains in grace. You'll want the interior wrapped in leather, we think, as the base cabin's plastics are a little bit of a jolt once you step inside.
Twist the key to life, and the Boxster wakes up with Porsche's trademark sonorous growl. Six cylinders hammer away behind your head long enough and you might get restive--if you're lame. Every Boxster will drop a 0-60 mph run in less than 5.5 seconds, whether you choose the hefty six-speed manual or the definitive seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox. Cornering grip is abundant, natural-feeling steering lures drivers to every next corner, and the tightly suspended Boxster won't usually rattle their teeth, even with 19-inch wheels and tires.
Every Boxster has power features, Bluetooth and a CD player. A vast options list can bring in navigation, leather and aluminum trim, even ventilated seats. The Boxster Spyder goes in the opposite direction, pulling out the power top and elaborate seats and the air conditioning to deliver an even more direct driving experience. It hardly seems possible, or even necessary.
- Awe-inspiring handling
- Evocative styling
- Strong acceleration
- Total cover for man-machine bromance
Next: Interior / Exterior »
- Storage space is lacking
- Road and wind noise annoy some
- Sound systems are better, but button-riddled