A Tale of Two Porsches: Can the New Boxster Give the New 911 a Run for its Money?


Up until now, the Boxster hasn't been able, even in top S guise, to threaten the base 911. Understandably, Porsche has been careful to keep its rear-engine icon always a step or two ahead of the popular roadster model.

However, Car&Driver magazine thinks that with the new 991 and 981, i.e. the seventh generation 911 and the third generation Boxster, the scales might have tipped in favor of the latter.

Both cars are powered by the same 3.4-liter flat-six and feature a new electric steering, which has caused some criticism. The 911, though, has its engine hung out in the back, as it has done for the past four decades, while the Boxster sports a mid-engine layout.

To make up for the 911’s 35HP power advantage, Jethro Bovingdon, who in his spare time from Evo moonlights as a contributor to C&D's Abroad Features, pitted a bog standard Carrera 2 against a Boxster S equipped with the electronically controlled PASM suspension and torque vectoring rear differential.

The two siblings fought against each other both on track and on the Santa Pod speedway. On paper, performance is practically identical: the Boxster S posts a 0-60 mph time of 4.8 seconds versus the 911’s 4.6 and its 173 mph top speed is an insignificant 6 mph lower.

Its US$60,900 base price, though, is a steal compared to the US$82,100 Porsche North America asks for a no-frills 911.

You can watch the video that follows after the jump to find out the outcome of this sibling rivalry.

By Andrew Tsaousis



Ricardo E Callado said... »October 05, 2012

Do both cars have the same tires? I am pretty sure porshe   detuned the boxter engine  on purpose. The boxter with those extra 35hp and better tires would have  give it a run for its money

wrong wrong said... »October 05, 2012

The bottom line is that the boxster is a compromised car because it simply has to be slower, and not as good as a 911 same with the cayman which frankly is the real star of the stable. If the Cayman had the same power as the 911 it would readily out perform it, its midengine coupe layout is ideal for a performance car versus the compromises that come with it forcing the rear engine layout that has proven time and time again not a good laayout for a sports car. If the cayman was built to be the best sports car could be it would make the 911 obsolete and move it more into the gt segment

dumblikeyou2 said... »October 05, 2012

I can't understand what this guy's saying in this video. He speaks like a mythical character from a Harry Potter movie.

r.burns said... »October 06, 2012

911 wouldn't have been a legend without this rear engine layout : a special and unique driving feel that you can't find on any other cars, even though it is a little less performant

People want a driving feeling, not a lap time

aaronbbrown said... »October 06, 2012

 Notice he says  “it just turns in like a mid-engine car” and this is the key to Porsches development of the 911, making a rear engine car handle like a mid-engine car. They've spent decades perfecting this.

 Purely from an engineering standpoint, the Boxster is superior, but since the Boxster is Kind of reverse engineered, taking everything designed around a rear engine car, and building a mid-engine car with it, it's been handicapped.  It doesn't require all that compromised nor all the electronic gadgetry that keeps the 911 from spinning like a top around that rear mounted engine.  If Porsche were serious about developing the Boxster it would defeat the 911 on the track every time, but they aren't serious.   they'd rather put their development into the 911, that's the only reason it makes a superior track car, that and the extra power.  Same goes for the Cayman, as someone mentioned here, superior design being intentionally handicapped.

 I look forward to the day that Porsche pulls its head out of its ass, sometime around the mid 21st century I'd say, though you never know, now that Ferdinand is gone,  more practical heads may finally prevail.  I think the 911 should always exist, but other designs should be allowed to compete more fairly under the Porsche name.

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