Published in the May 2010 issue of “Die Porsche Kassette”
Two brand-new, 2010 Boxster Spyders were sent by Porsche Cars North America (PCNA) to Gold Coast Region’s Homestead-Miami DE event on the first Sunday of May.
There had been a previous announcement from Porsche that these cars were being sent with a PCNA support team, including Porsche Professional Drivers and that they would be giving hot-lap rides for anyone who requested them. South Florida would be the 2nd stop on their Tour, as they had started in Georgia (Road Atlanta) the previous weekend.
Being the Boxster fanatic that I am, I would not be left out.
So, even though I wasn’t signed up to drive at the Homestead-Miami DE (because I was doing Sebring the following Saturday) I showed up bright and early at Homestead.
So early, in fact, that the Spyders hadn’t yet arrived.
I had only seen photos of the Spyders, so I was anxiously waiting for them.
Finally, they arrived.... WOW!!!!! A white one and a silver one, so I went and parked my own ’97-built right in between them for a photo op: “The first and latest Boxsters”.
For those of you who may not be up to speed on the new Boxster Spyder, it is a Special Edition 2010 Boxster which Porsche has just released with some very nice features, not available in other Boxsters or even in other P-Cars, period.
The concept of the Spyder takes the roadster back to the basics, evocating the famous but tiny Porsche 550 Spyder of the mid 50s which conquered so many tracks and “killed so many giants”. In order to produce the Spyder, Porsche put the 2010 Boxster S on a diet, reduced it’s weight by means of lighter materials and by deleting some creature comforts, but they also upped the performance.
Out went the electrically operated soft top, replaced by a simple, manual canvas cover over the cockpit, so went the A/C, door pulls and the audio system. The integrated decklid which incorporates the Spyder humps is all aluminum as are the door skins (straight off the Turbo). Lightweight 19” wheels are used and even the gas tank’s volume was reduced by a few gallons, all in the name of saving weight.
All of the weight savings add up to 176 lbs shaved off the Boxster S, but here’s still better news. By fine-tuning the engine management system, the intake and the exhaust, Porsche extracted another 10 HP and an additional 7 ft.lb. of torque to bring the performance numbers of this new 3.4 liter flat six wasserboxer to a respectable 320 HP at 7,200 RPM and 266 ft.lb of torque at 4,750 RPM.
But, back to Homestead.
I was the first one on the track because I figured that by being first I’d get more laps in than anyone else (and I was right!). Before they could be run all-out, they would have to warm up the cars and tires and the Pro drivers would have to familiarize themselves with the track. So I got a good 10 laps in, each one progressively faster than the previous one.
The experience was fantastic. I still have “permagrin” on my face from those laps.
The brakes are outstanding, the handling superb and the GT2 carbon fibre bucket seats supported my frame perfectly.
Because the two Spyders are being driven to many of the venues in Porsche’s Spyder Tour, they were outfitted with some creature-comfort options (not standard) such as A/C, Audio System, Navigation, etc. which adds weight back to the car. Also, both of the cars had the Doppelkupplung (PDK) transmission which although shifts faster than any human being could shift a manual transmission, it also adds another 50 lbs of weight over the 6-speed manual tranny.
Even though this car is more powerful, the acceleration was not that much more than a scantily optioned 2010 Boxster S (which is pretty darned good!). I’m sure that a stripped-down Spyder would be simply amazing!
The car is only $3,200 more than the Boxster S, and if you’re in the market for an incredible track toy, this is it.
If you’ll excuse me, I have go to the gas station now. I don’t need any gas in my car at the moment, but I need the winning Lotto ticket for the next drawing :)
On behalf of all the Club Members and Directors of the Gold Coast Region PCA we want to thank Porsche Cars North America (PCNA) for sending their new “toys” for us to play with, here in South Florida. Our sincere appreciation in particular to: Tim Cupp, Rich Hull and Brian Cunningham for having come all the way down and spread so much permagrin to our Club members.
To see a short video of the Spyders in action at the Homestead-Miami Speedway you can visit the Videos page of my website: www. PedrosGarage.com.
© 2010 Technolab/PedrosGarage.com