The Porsche 718 Boxster S is the mid-level specification of the 718 Boxster 2-seater sports car. The Boxster S is powered by a 2.5L Turbo 4-cylinder engine that slots between the 2.0L 4-cylinder of the entry-level Boxster and Boxster T models and the flat 6-cylinder GTS and Boxster Spyder models.
When it comes to reliability, the 2.5L engine is slightly different than the other two, and the worst problem associated with the 2.5L turbo is the turbocharger. Other issues are related to the transmission, the A/C system, overheating issues, and issues with the equipment.
All in all, the Porsche 718 Boxster S is a fairly reliable car, but only if you maintain it well enough. It’s no surprise that Porsches tend to cost more money to maintain as opposed to other cars from this segment, but Porsches also retain value better than most other cars from this segment.
Either way, the 718 lineup has come a long way since it was first released. Earlier models were prone to various issues and were difficult to live with while newer models are much better in all regards.
Porsche 718 Boxster S – Turbocharger issues
The 2.5L engine found in the 718 Boxster S offers 350hp which is about 50hp more than in the entry-level Boxster and Boxster T models. This is mostly thanks to the large turbocharger which sadly sometimes tends to fail. More specifically, the turbo heat sink can fail and it results in the car going into limp mode.
This is a serious issue as it can make the car pretty much undrivable. Be sure to always inspect the turbocharger if you are interested in buying a 2nd hand Boxster/Cayman S model. It’s also worth mentioning that these issues are more common on older higher-mileage models as opposed to newer low-mileage models.
Porsche 718 Boxster S – Transmission issues
The 718 Boxster S is available with two different transmission options. A Porsche short-throw manual gearbox which is the preferred choice by many driving enthusiasts or a 7-speed dual-clutch PDK gearbox which many deem to be the best dual-clutch box there is. The manual transmission is delicate and if you are not careful with it, it can fail pretty miserably.
The PDK is much better, but some owners have reported the transmission being hesitant to shift, especially when it comes to downshifting. Either way, these issues are more prone with older 718 Boxster S models while newer models are much better and far less prone to these issues.
Porsche 718 Boxster S – A/C system issues
A/C issues are common across the 718 range which means that you can find them both on entry-level 718 models and higher-end 718 models. The most common A/C issues are related to the condenser which can fail and so can the condenser lines. As such, the A/C loses its ability to promptly cool down or heat up the car’s cabin.
If you are after a 2nd hand 718 model of any kind, be sure to take it to a trained and experienced Porsche specialist who will be able to diagnose and solve the issue in no time. These are typically cheap to repair, but if you need replacement parts, it could get a lot more expensive.
Porsche 718 Boxster S – Overheating issues
The entire 718 lineup is prone to overheating due to faulty water pumps and thermostats, but some models seem to be worse than others. The 718 S models are probably the worst out of them all because they have the highest reported number of overheating incidents out of all 718 models there are.
Some owners have also reported that a replacement water pump and thermostat aren’t always enough to fix the issue and that the car can develop leaks that can only be visible while the car is operating at high temperatures.
Porsche 718 Boxster S – Equipment issues
Various equipment issues and small niggles are also present with the 718 Boxster S and the most common one is associated with the rear spoiler which often fails to go down flush into the car’s body. This is an issue that isn’t immediately obvious to everyone and it’s not exactly the kind of issue people are going to be reporting.
Other equipment-related issues are more common on other 718 models and they usually consist of software-related problems.
Is the Porsche 718 Boxster S worth it?
The Porsche 718 Boxster S is a car designed for those who want to enjoy the excitement of a Porsche drop-top without paying obscene amounts of money. The 718 lineup is criticized due to its downsized engines which simply can’t match the emotion of a flat 6-cylinder, but no one can deny that the Boxster S isn’t a really capable car.
If you are a taller driver and you don’t like compact sports cars, the 718 Boxster S is not a car for you. The good news is that no matter if the car is for you or not, it is a Porsche and it retains its value better than the vast majority of cars from this segment.
Is the Porsche 718 Boxster S a women’s car?
Some cars like the Porsche Boxster, the Audi TT, and the BMW Z4 to name a few, are often viewed as feminine cars or hairdresser’s cars and many people aren’t willing to buy them for those very reasons. It’s justifiable to say that all of these notions are stupid and completely fail to portray the image of what these cars truly are.
They are great handling performance cars designed for the thrill of driving. They might be smaller than most cars and they do often have feminine design lines, but no car is strictly a woman’s or a man’s car.
What is the best Porsche 718 Boxster model?
The Porsche 718 Boxster Spyder is by far the best 718 model money can buy because it comes with a naturally aspirated flat 6-cylinder engine which sounds amazing. The Boxster Spyder also looks a lot cooler than most Boxster models due to a completely separate soft-top design.