Porsche Working Hard on Six-cylinder Versions of 718 Boxster, Cayman

porsche working hard on six cylinder versions of 718 boxster cayman

There was a time when all of Porsche’s mid-engined offerings came with the distinctive growl of a six-cylinder engine. However, with the 718 opting for a more economical turbocharged four-cylinder, some enthusiasts complain there’s something missing in the noise department.

While we already knew that the company is working on a new 4.0-liter flat-six for the returning GT4, rumors arose that the engine could make its way into less-hardcore variants of the 718 after a basic-looking Boxster was spotted during cold weather testing earlier this year. Porsche has apparently kept at it, as another 4.0-liter Boxster test mule was spotted at the Nürburgring along with a non-GT4 Cayman, according to autoevolution.

If the displacement sounds familiar, its because it’s already available in the 911 GT3. Porsche is simply planning on making it available inside the 718, albeit detuned, to get that sexy sound and linear oomph. Reports suggest that the naturally aspirated 4.0-liter engine in the GT4 will produce somewhere around 425 horsepower. Lesser 718 models, which are expected to roped into a “Touring” trim, are expected to get by with fewer than 400 horses — with four-cylinder models remaining available.

While this author doesn’t have a problem with a gently muffled four-banger, so long as there is plenty of turbo spool and intake noise, adding a more attainable six-cylinder seems like a smart move. Purists will be pleased and Porsche will probably be able raise its margins on the — hypothetical and presumably more popular — Touring models.

Porsche is expected to make an official announcement regarding the vehicles later this year.

[Images: Porsche]

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  • SunnyvaleCA SunnyvaleCA on May 10, 2019

    Maybe Porsche could change the gearing and lightly retune the engine to make the base 4-cylinder reasonably fuel efficient? There are plenty of buyers who are buying for the looks and status and have no intention of driving it with vigor. This goes double for the Boxster.

  • Speedlaw Speedlaw on May 12, 2019

    I'm not a porsche geek or expert. I've driven a few, and the wail from the six is the whole point of the car, that, and it's basically a go kart where you sit in the middle and the engine is behind you. I preferred a Cayman because it got the Porsche front steering right but the engine wasn't a counterweight.

  • DenverMike When was it ever a mystery? The Fairmont maybe, but only the 4-door "Futura" trim, that was distinctively upscale. The Citation and Volare didn't have competing trims, nor was there a base stripper Maxima at the time, if ever, crank windows, vinyl seats, 2-doors, etc. So it wasn't a "massacre", not even in spirit, just different market segments. It could be that the Maxima was intended to compete with those, but everything coming from Japan at the time had to take it up a notch, if not two.Thanks to the Japanese "voluntary" trade restriction, everything had extra options, if not hard loaded. The restriction limited how many vehicles were shipped, not what they retailed at. So Japanese automakers naturally raised the "price" (or stakes) without raising MSRP. What the dealers charged (gouged) was a different story.Realistically, the Maxima was going up against entry luxury sedans (except Cimarron lol), especially Euro/German, same as the Cressida. It definitely worked in Japanese automaker's favor, not to mention inspiring Lexus, Acura and Infiniti.
  • Ronnie Schreiber Hydrocarbon based fuels have become unreliable? More expensive at the moment but I haven't seen any lines gathering around gas stations lately, have you? I'm old enough to remember actual gasoline shortages in 1973 and 1979 (of course, since then there have been many recoverable oil deposits discovered around the world plus the introduction of fracking). Consumers Power is still supplying me with natural gas. I recently went camping and had no problem buying propane.Texas had grid problems last winter because they replaced fossil fueled power plants with wind and solar, which didn't work in the cold weather. That's the definition of unreliable.I'm an "all of the above" guy when it comes to energy: fossil fuels, hydro, wind (where it makes sense), nuclear (including funding for fusion research), and possibly solar.Environmental activists, it seems to me, have no interest in energy diversity. Based on what's happened in Sri Lanka and the push against agriculture in Europe and Canada, I think it's safe to say that some folks want most of us to live like medieval peasants to save the planet for their own private jets.
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  • MaintenanceCosts There's no mystery anymore about how the Japanese took over the prestige spot in the US mass market (especially on the west coast) when you realize that this thing was up against the likes of the Fairmont, Citation, and Volaré. A massacre.