Five Things We Dislike About The 2016 Porsche Boxster Spyder

As thrilled as we are about getting a bright new Spyder from Stuttgart, the 2016 Porsche Boxster Spyder does have its shortcomings. Here are the top attributes that make our list of objections:

1. By Default, No Audio system Is Installed

The fanatical attention to vehicle lightweighting in the 2016 Porsche Boxster Spyder is one of its most prized, desirable attributes. That said, we have to question the automaker’s decision to delete the audio system by default, as a head unit and some speakers really don’t threaten the car’s diet much at all.

Now, a basic audio package can be added to the new Porsche Boxster Spyder as a no-cost option, with the entire range of Boxster audio systems available at a price. But looking at what the Chevrolet Camaro Z/28 accomplished with a simple head unit and a single speaker, we feel something along those lines might have served the Porsche Boxster Spyder better, with an optional delete.

2. Six-Speed Transmissions Are Quickly Becoming Basic

The 2016 Porsche Boxster Spyder comes exclusively with a 6-speed manual transmission. While a case could certainly be made that the PDK dual-clutch should be an available option, it could also be argued that an automated trans has no place in a purist’s car such as this.

We feel that a more valid complaint might be that the manual transmission only has 6 forward gears, which was already the standard some 20 years ago on Porsche’s accessible 968. It’s not out of a concern for fuel economy that we’d wish for more gears in this new Spyder, but rather, we feel as though the 3.8-liter engine is far too potent for so few available ratios.

3. The Alfa Romeo 4C Matches Its Performance, For Less Money

The US-spec Alfa Romeo 4C is a superb car for the money. It bases at just over $55k, makes due with a humble 237 HP 1.7-liter turbo, and yet, makes the run up to 60 mph in just 4.3 seconds – the same as the Porsche Boxster Spyder.

Kind of makes this top-spec Boxster a little less special, no?

4. The Porsche Boxster Spyder Has Torque-Vectoring And Stability Management

Okay, okay; we know that torque-vectoring and stability control are objectively useful things that allow for a faster passage through the corners. But so does a PDK, and that didn’t stop the sportscar-maker from making that unavailable.

As crazy as it sounds, we feel as though the 2016 Porsche Boxster Spyder – a car whose very name is supposed to be indicative of a pure and holistic driving experience, whose name is a throwback to the good old days of simple mechanical sportscars with no frills, whose convertible top and transmission are both manual, forcing direct driver engagement – should be left as oldschool as possible.

But of course, you may be of a different opinion.

5. You Probably Won’t Be Able To Afford It

The 2016 Porsche Cayman GT4 costs nearly $85k, and given that the 2016 Porsche Boxster Spyder has essentially the same engine and handling, it’s no surprise that it’s close, at a tad over $82k. Meanwhile, the base 2016 Boxster is listed at just over $51k, and the previously top-tier Boxster GTS is around $74.

Basically, all that’s to say that those in-need of an open-top Porsche roadster have plenty of other, cheaper options available, none of which are exactly lacking in the performance department. Once again, you’re paying more money for less car – and sure, part of the reduction comes from pricier, more advanced lightweight materials.

Nevertheless, for the majority of buyers, the 2016 Porsche Boxster Spyder simply isn’t worth the sky-high price of entry.

Aaron Birch is an automotive enthusiast and writer/filmmaker from Detroit, MI. As a rule, he only buys cars older than himself.


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