For 2017, the Porsche Boxster gets a mild mid-cycle refresh, which includes two new turbocharged flat-four engines, redesigned body panels, and a numerical designation. The 718 nomenclature is a homage to the mid-engine Porsche race cars that won numerous races in the 1950s and 1960s. It is also expected that the Boxster’s hardtop cousin, the Cayman, will also inherit the 718 badge.
Outside, the 2017 Porsche 718 Boxster and Boxster S feature all-new body panels. The only carryover components from the old Boxster are the cargo compartment lids, the powered soft top, and the windshield.
Inside, the cabin features a new dashboard layout and comes with the latest version of Porsche Communication Management, which is controlled via a new standard touchscreen head unit, and is also fitted with a new instrument cluster. However, navigation is still an optional feature on both the 718 Boxster and Boxster S.
When compared to the previous Porsche Boxster, the exterior design of the new 718 Boxster is very similar, but the new convertible features larger front air intakes, new and more sculpted side sills, bigger air inlets, and a redesigned rear spoiler that emphasizes the car’s width. The 2017 Porsche 718 Boxster and Boxster S also include new LED taillights with four-point brake lights.
Optional features on the new Porsche 718 Boxster include Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM) that lowers the car’s ride height by 10 mm with standard suspension or 20 mm with the optional sport suspension. The active suspension has been reworked to offer a wider range of adjustments, like extra damping for long distance driving to extra stiffness for track driving.
The optional Sport Chrono package now includes an Individual mode, which gives the driver more ways to configure the vehicle to their preferences. 2017 Porsche 718 Boxster and Boxster S models equipped with PDK and Sport Chrono also feature a Sport Response button which sharpens the engine and the transmission.
For 2017, the Porsche Boxster ditches its two naturally-aspirated flat-six engines in favor of a more powerful and fuel efficient turbocharged flat-four.
The “base” Porsche 718 Boxster is powered by a turbocharged 2.0 L flat-four engine which produces a healthy 300 horsepower and 280 lb.ft. torque (an increase of 35 horsepower and 74 lb.ft. torque compared to the old 2.7 L flat-six).
The more powerful 718 Boxster S is motivated by a turbocharged 2.5 L flat-four motor which produces 350 horsepower and 309 lb.ft. torque (an increase of 35 horsepower and 43 lb.ft. torque compared to the old Boxster S). Despite the bump in the power outputs, Porsche engineers claim that both engines are 14% more fuel efficient than the old pair of flat-sixes they replace.
Transmission choices carryover from the old Boxster and consist of the standard six-speed manual or the optional seven-speed PDK twin-clutch unit.
Porsche claims that the 718 Boxster with a six-speed manual will hit 60 mph in 4.9 seconds. While PDK equipped models will do the deed in 4.7 seconds or in 4.5 seconds when equipped with the Sport Chrono package. The more powerful 718 Boxster S is expected to reach 60 mph in 4.4 seconds when equipped with the standard six-speed manual transmission. PDK equipped models will hit 60 mph in 4.2 seconds or four seconds flat with the Sport Chrono package.
In addition to the new engines, the 2017 Porsche 718 Boxster and Boxster S also receive re-tuned suspensions, a more responsive and direct electric power steering system, and upgraded brakes. The PDK dual-clutch transmission has also been reprogrammed with virtual gears to conserve fuel.
The 2017 Porsche 718 Boxster starts at $57,050 and includes destination charges. The more powerful 718 Boxster S starts at $69,090. Both models will go on sale in the U.S. in June.
*Rahul Raman is the Founder of CARS 360 Mke, an automotive news outlet. He is a regular contributor to Automoblog.net and the author of our First Look series.