Porsche 718 Boxster (2016) Review

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Porsche 718 Boxster (2016) At A Glance

5/5

+Updated Boxster gets new name and switches to four-cylinder engines. Quicker yet more economical than previously. Beautifully balanced handling. Comfortable and easy to live with day to day.

-Engines lack the character and sound of the previous six-cylinder units.

On average it achieves 90% of the official MPG figure

The 718 Boxster sees Porsche rename its two-seater open-top sports car as part of a mid-life update. But there's more to this than merely a cosmetic nip and tuck. It may not look that different, but under the skin there are big changes with four-cylinder turbocharged engines replacing the six-cylinder units of the previous Boxster.

The purists will no doubt be up in arms but the change to smaller 2.0-litre and 2.5-litre turbo engines makes perfect sense. Both deliver more power - 35PS to be precise - along with more torque which means quicker 0-62mph times. Add in significant improvements in fuel economy and it's a no brainer.

With 350PS, the Boxster S is supremely quick with a 0-62mph time of just 4.6 seconds with the standard manual gearbox. We'd always recommend this as we think it's more involving, but the PDK automatic is also very good and provides faster acceleration with better official economy.

Inside there are minor changes, the most significant of which is a much improved touchscreen system which is far better than what Porsche had previously, both in its look and operation.

What's not so good with the 718 Boxster is the sound. Despite new exhausts, the flat-four engine can't replicate the same noise as the previous six-cylinder units. It doesn't have the same character either so while it's undoubtedly fast, it lacks that distinctive Porsche sound that's so recognisable.

That's not to say the 718 Boxster is disappointing. Far from it. Not only is it quicker but thanks to more torque and the fact the engines are now turbocharged, it pulls with even more gusto. Porsche has uprated the brakes to improve stopping power and the suspension has been tuned to make it even better through corners.

Like its predecessor, the 718 Boxster is a genuine sports car you can live with every day. It's comfortable and easy to drive, whether around town or on an open road, helped by an impressively forgiving ride and a light gearchange. Yet when you get it onto a more challenging road, it shows its natural qualities, with wonderful steering and huge amounts of grip instilling plenty of confidence. It forgives mistakes too and is no intimidating performance car, even when pushed.

The 718 Boxster, likes its predecessor, is the best two-seater performance convertible you can buy. It may not have the same character as before, but it makes up for that with sublime handling, strong performance and everyday comfort. 

Porsche Boxster 718 2019 Road Test

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Real MPG average for a Porsche 718 Boxster (2016)

RealMPG

Real MPG was created following thousands of readers telling us that their cars could not match the official figures.

Real MPG gives real world data from drivers like you to show how much fuel a vehicle really uses.

Average performance

90%

Real MPG

26–39 mpg

MPGs submitted

12

Diesel or petrol? If you're unsure whether to go for a petrol or diesel (or even an electric model if it's available), then you need our Petrol or Diesel? calculator. It does the maths on petrols, diesels and electric cars to show which is best suited to you.

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Ask Honest John

Can you recommend a reliable, good-looking, two-seater sports car?
"I have £30,000 cash to spend on a two-seater sports car. Now, hopefully, with better weather and improved prospects on the horizon, what would you advise to buy? The looks and street cred are important, preferably a classic look and I want something reliable. Performance is not a top priority. Don't want MG, Triumph or an MX-5. Any ideas? Many Thanks."
How about a Jaguar F-Type? It's a very stylish choice available as a coupe or convertible. A Porsche Boxster or Cayman could be a good alternative. None of these will be cheap to run, though. A Mazda MX-5 is unbeatable if that's what you're after.
Answered by Andrew Brady
Does sport mode increase fuel consumption?
"I've just changed my Porsche Boxster 981 for a 718. I've only had one automatic in 44 years, but the PDK is fantastic. Anyway, I know the sport button gives you sharper responses but does it affect fuel consumption at steady speeds when cruising?"
It delays upchanges, so yes, the car will use more fuel.
Answered by Honest John

What does a Porsche 718 Boxster (2016) cost?