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There's already a hardtop Boxster.


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[wot.motortrend.com]

Does this mean they'll start adding rust during the assembly process like they did with the old VW Karmnn Ghia and 411 series?
I assume reliability is a function of design, parts, and assembly. I'm a bit worried with what I've read on VW requesting cheaper parts for the next generation 911 and mid-engine model production moving to Karmann. We'll see. As a side note, it is hard to believe Porsche is waiting so long to release the next generation mid-engine and 911 models, considering the leap from the 996/986 to 997/987 was probably not dramatic in terms of its cost to Porsche. I'd like to see a dramatic update of the Boxster, to include a light weight hardtop convertible similar to the Miata and Ferrari California.
where the bean counters aren't asking for cost reductions. It all depends on what parts are "cost reduced versions" as some of those may be an improvement.

Went out today with snow on the ground. I nice lined top kept me snug and the cabin was quiet. Now why do I want the weight of a folding hardtop? Why do I want to space robbing design?
Quote
mikefocke, '01S Sanford, NC
where the bean counters aren't asking for cost reductions. It all depends on what parts are "cost reduced versions" as some of those may be an improvement.

Went out today with snow on the ground. I nice lined top kept me snug and the cabin was quiet. Now why do I want the weight of a folding hardtop? Why do I want to space robbing design?


Regarding the retractable hardtop--exactly; the trade offs include more weight, less space and a more complicated roof assembly. Is that what this car is about?


Minus 40 degrees... Is that Fahrenheit or Celsius?
My argument for a Boxster hardtop is primarily driven by the fact that my Boxster is a daily driver, I like the looks of a hardtop, and I believe canvas is rapidly becoming out of date.

Generally speaking, here are my top four reasons:

1. Looks. I think a hardtop just looks better than canvas. Canvas fades and shows creases eventually.
2. Safety. Hardtops are more secure.
3. Noise. Hardtops allow for less wind and road noise when you want a quieter environment, such as long trips.
4. Modern. In my opinion, canvas tops already seem retro and should be reserved for limited models like the Spyder.

If VW wants to increase Boxster sales, Boxsters are going to have to be viewed as modern and competitive. The BMW Z4, which used to have a canvas top, now has a very nice looking hardtop convertible. The Mercedes SLK, which has always been a hardtop convertible, will be getting an even nicer transparent glass roof soon. According to one of the car magazines, the glass will incorporate electromagnetic particles to adjust transparency like the current Ferrari glass roofs. Even the Mazda Miata has a hardtop convertible option which does not weigh much more than their canvas top. Not moving in this direction with the next generation Boxster (which will cost 5-7% more, according to reports), will put the Boxster at a disadvantage. The canvas should be saved for special roadster models like the Spyder.

Porsche may be able to get away with the new Baby Boxster having a canvas roof, but it will be an increasingly tough to sell Boxsters in large numbers at $50K plus with a canvas roof.

Thoughts?
Clearly everyone is of course entitled to their own opinions based on use and personal tastes. FWIW I would not like to see a folding hard top since:
  • I bought SilverBox to drive primarily with the the top down and do so close to 90% of the time.
  • I doubt a folding hardtop would be any safer than the soft top with the roll bars and head airbags (though it of course would be more secure when parked with regard to someone slashing a soft top)
  • I enjoy the engine and environmental sounds when driving (if I want quite I'll drive my STS)
  • I would not like to give up a significant portion of the rear trunk for the folding hard top
Now I am all in favor of replacing the electric canvas top with a manual folding top (similar to the new 911). It seems like that could easily be done with the reconfiguration they did on the Boxster Spyder rear (instead of the 'Rube Goldberg' 17 step attachment top it currently comes with). cool smiley

But if it does, be assured by the images at this site:
Upside down

(Scroll down a bit.)

Minus 40 degrees... Is that Fahrenheit or Celsius?
If my Boxster was a warm-weather only ride, a lightweight manual roof like the Spyder or 911 Speedster would make total sense and be quite cool. My perspective is based solely on having a Boxster as my only wheels in the sun, rain, sleet, or snow.

Opinions will certainly vary, but I see no reason why Porsche can't have a hardtop for the Boxster with a simple manual canvas top as an option. Of course, in keeping with past Porsche pricing practice, the cheaper canvas roof would cost five times as much as the more expensive hardtop.

Per the roof, the spy shots of the next Boxster suggest the top will be an all new design. The clam shell appears to be gone and the back trunk lid runs from the roll bars to the bumper. If the spy shots are hiding an actual hardtop, I wonder what will become of the Cayman. I think it's odd that I haven't come across any spy shots of the next generation Cayman, yet I've seen tons of photos of the next 911 and Boxster on the web.
There's a reason very few cars are offered with a choice of soft or hard folding tops; the entire car has to be designed around the hardtop. The Sebring with a soft top is a joke because of this (the soft top still takes up the whole trunk). Mazda did a good job with both versions of the current Miata, but it's a smaller roof, which makes the process simpler. Also, as fuel economy standards get increasingly stringent, weight reduction becomes even more important. Given the cost, weight, and complexity of designing a car with both options, and the fact that there is a hardtop Boxster (the Cayman), I can't imagine I'd devote the resources to such a thing if I were in charge of Porsche.
I'm glad to see the reply by JWDBOX... I thought I was the only guy on here who would have an STS in the garage. Nothing eats mass quantities of pavement like a Caddy.

2006 Boxster, Silver w/Metropol Blue, Sports/Chrono pkg & 19" Carrera S wheels.
smileys with beer *NM*
jwdbox - 7 years ago
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