By on December 10, 2015

2016 Porsche Boxster Spyder 01

Porsche announced Wednesday that it would change the model names for 2016 of its Boxster and Cayman models to “718 Boxster” and “718 Cayman” because there was once a race car in the 1950s and 1960s that had four cylinders and competed in a bunch of races, I guess. Either that, or Porsche is really into the Queens area code.

Oh yeah, and the company confirmed what we heard in September: the mid-engined Stuttgart machines will get a turbo fours instead of flat sixes from here on out. (Maybe GT4 models will retain the 3.8-liter six. Maybe.)

The name change seems, well, odd. Despite the loose association with a 60-year-old car, the switch to 718 Boxster and 718 Cayman seems to add a level of unnecessary naming convention for a German company that counts the ounces of its seatbelts for chrissakes.

What’s unclear is how the name change would impact the rest of the automaker’s lineup.

Will the next-generation Panamera become the 989 Panamera? (That concept was rear-engined, I know.) Will the Cayenne and Macan follow suit with another digit? What does this all mean?

According to Porsche, the Cayman and Boxster will grow closer together visually and in terms of price. The Cayman will cost less than the Boxster next year — right now the droptop is $500 cheaper than the coupe — and both cars will sport turbo fours planted midships.

Porsche didn’t provide specifics on the engines for the new cars, but it’s likely that the base 718s will get a 2-liter turbo four that makes 240 horsepower and 718 S models could get 2.5-liter fours that make 300 horsepower. Stay tuned for more details on that.

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32 Comments on “Call Me 718: Porsche Changes Names of Boxster, Cayman For Some Reason...”

  • avatar

    Why not just make everything a 9 something? You know, like you used to?

  • avatar

    I was about the make the same Queens comment when I saw the headline.

    But it’s not un-apt: given how much money the Chinese are parking across the Pacific (impacting real estate prices in Vancouver, California, Seattle, and even in NYC), Porsche’s might be marketing to their type. Wasn’t that the same rationale for the Panamera?

    • 0 avatar

      718 is not just covering Queens. Brooklyn and Staten Island are also covered by it.

      I’ll give up my 212 number when I’m dead and it’s pried out of my still-working, rotary-dial Western Electric TrimLine (TM) phone’s cold, silent wiring.

      • 0 avatar

        It’s been 13.5 years since I’ve lived in NYC, but I don’t forsee myself giving up that 917 cell number anytime soon. The T-Mobile family plan would be about $30 cheaper, but it’d force me off my old number to, god-forbid, a 614 number.

        • 0 avatar

          I have a T-Mobile family plan with three numbers from three different area codes in very different places. To my knowledge only AT&T requires that family plans have numbers within the same region.

          • 0 avatar

            In my case, my sister (who runs our T-Mob family plan) is on a ’00s-vintage plan with minutes and text restrictions. I am on the Something Something Unlimited plan—a “new” plan.

            Since the grandfather plans are less profitable for T-Mobile, they’ve declared that if she were to bring me onto the family plan, she would have to upgrade to a “new” minutes unlimited plan. My 917 number would be lost in the process.

            As my father’s true daughter, she is loath to give up the appearance of saving money, even though she’s recently taken to texting a great deal.

      • 0 avatar

        Regarding the 212 number…

      • 0 avatar

        Fortunately, you won’t get all the wrong numbers you used to get when people tried calling Los Angeles area code 213 on their rotary dial and didn’t quite get their finger to the finger stop. They’d dial 212 instead, and those 9:30 PM west coast calls were after midnight in NY. All the new area codes in L.A. cut those calls down, and touch tone eliminated them.

  • avatar
    Jeff Waingrow

    They sound more like addresses.

  • avatar

    Hopefully this isn’t some sort of Garth Brooks/Chris Gaines nonsense.

  • avatar

    Maybe this is reminiscent of the old Volvo 7xx/9xx naming conventions where the larger numbers mean a premium model. Can we expect 918 Pananmeras in the near future?

  • avatar

    So I’m guessing 711 had some copyright issues…

  • avatar

    While we’re all talking about the name change, isn’t the big news the engine? Also, I predict that everyone will keep calling them the Cayman and Boxster. Too bad about the Boxter/Cayman relative prices getting straightened out; I assume my Cayman will take a hit.

  • avatar
    White Shadow

    I love it! They should drop the Boxster and Cayman names altogether and call then them the 718 coupe and convertible (or maybe even Spyder)

  • avatar

    Ha. 2liter engine sport car. Here’s a novel idea. I wish them well convincing people to dole out money for a car with same size engine like a Civic.

    • 0 avatar

      They sell to people who read car magazines and -sites.

      Not bad cars by any means, but given the sheer amount of hype, I have to admit they are about the most disappointing cars I’ve ever driven. For people who track their DD, they probably make much more sense. I don’t, so I’d either spend 50% extra and get a 911, or (more likely) 50% less and get a mint S2000 or late NSX.

    • 0 avatar

      I am sure there is an 8.0L pickup truck you can buy for less, since displacement per dollar is the only metric that matters.

      • 0 avatar

        @sportyaccordy: that was uncalled for. What are you, a teenager drooling over posters with Porsches while driving your Accord? I am sure the talent hunters from Porsche are taking notice.

  • avatar

    The big news is I’m from the 518! So this car is more mine than yours…

    Not that I really want it though..

    I’d take the suv that has become very popular in my area of hills in upstate my.

  • avatar

    The 989 prototype was front engined, it was planned to use a newly develped V8 engine.

  • avatar

    I’m fine with the change. Porsche had an open cockpit racer in the late 50’s-early 60’s that was the 718. I believe it raced in lemans. I like to see the race lineage.

  • avatar

    The naming decision totally makes sense. Boxster, 911, Cayman. Do you see any coherence here? Probably not. What about 911, 944, 958? Seems like a coherence, doesn’t it? It seems like Porsche is returning to its naming roots.

  • avatar

    Chevy will sell you a Malibu with a 2.0 turbo 4 cyl that makes almost 260 hp, so I guess we’re done trying to make the engines special in a Porsche? I haven’t lusted over a Porsche since the mid 90’s so I’m clearly not in the target demographic.

    • 0 avatar
      heavy handle

      On top of that, Volvo sells a 2.0 with over 300 hp, and Merc sells one with over 350 hp.
      We’ll have to wait for the official announcement, but I don’t think 240 hp will cut it in this market.

    • 0 avatar

      Wait a second. Are you actually trying to compare a Malibu to a Boxster? The current base level Boxster run a 0-60 in 5.5, that Malibu is what mid 7’s with the turbo-4? The current Boxster S runs mid to low 4’s. The new base turbo version, I believe, is supposed to get to the low 5’s. That’s just the base model.

      By the way, the Merc turbo-4 (CLA AMG) runs 0-60 in 4.2, which is the same ballpark as the new Boxster (718) S turbo at 4.1. The Boxster is also about 600 pounds lighter than that CLA.

      Output numbers have never been a Porsche theme. They are notoriously underestimated and in the end, you buy a Boxster for handling, fun, and driver engagement. If you just want numbers on paper, this isn’t your car.

  • avatar

    I’m mad the obvious title wasn’t chosen…. 1-718-PORSCHE

  • avatar

    Riffing off the coincidence of the 718 area code, which was Brooklyn back in the 80s, maybe Porsche should start making regional editions. 914 and 203 for suburbanites, 310 for LA, 206 for Microsofties, etc.

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