Sunday, December 12, 2010

Porsche Boxster

Over the years we’ve encountered some people who seem to take great pride and joy in turning their cars into replica exotics. Some have done a piss poor job at it while others have been good enough to make their cars ‘resemble’ these exotics, forgetting the fact that if any of the onlookers would dare lift the hood, the vehicle would be exposed as the fraud that it is. Then there’s this Bugatti Veyron that, upon first look, you would never take for a replica. Except that it actually is.

The work done on the exterior of this vehicle to turn it into a Veyron is extremely impressive. So impressive, in fact, that it may not be obvious that the vehicle that lies underneath it is by no means a lightweight either. Hiding under that remarkably accurate Veyron casing is a Porsche Boxster. Sure, it doesn’t come with the 1,000 ponies the all-original Veyron has, but at 300 horsepower, it can hold its own against other sports cars. Just make sure you don’t put it up against the Ferraris and Lamborghinis of the world, unless, of course, you’re ready and willing to get smoked out of the water and caught with your pants down.

The engine design is what is called a mid-engine layout. Essentially, the engine is place somewhere between the front and real axles. In the case of the Boxster, the engine rests right behind the cockpit.
The idea behind using a mid-engine type layout is to distribute the weight evenly throughout the vehicle. What this is does is then enhance the performance by increasing stability and traction while also improving the accelerating, braking and turning aspects as well. One other benefit is that the ride is much smoother than say traditional front end engine mount. The suspension is in a better situation to absorb bumps without the majority of the weight in the front of the car.
The Boxster was also the first Porsche model to have water cooling for regulating the engine temperature. With the engine located in the middle, cooling it became a priority. Most engines have the benefit of being in the front where it can be cooled by the wind. However, in this case, another alternative was required so Porsche added a water cooling component.
With the mid-engine design, there are two essential drawbacks. First, the engine is pretty much hidden inside the vehicle making routine maintenance a difficult situation. So, one of the things that Porsche did was build the engine to be able to use less maintenance which included longer life spark plugs, more comprehensive engine controls and self tightening fan belts. The second drawback is the reduced capacity for storage. With storage in the nose and rear of the vehicle, there is some but not a lot. You'll want to be as creative as possible if you intend to pack anything.
When Porsche set out to design and build a new sports car, they had the avid sports car enthusiast in mind. With state of the art engineering, the Porsche Boxster engine allows for a driving experience unparalleled to other roadsters in its class.