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PORSCHE BOXSTER GTS : Punchier Boxster

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It is astonishing what a little more power, wheels of slightly larger and box on board some more characteristic sometimes do for a car.

Specs

PORSCHE BOXSTER GTS

Engine: 3,436cc 24-valve flat-6

Transmission: Seven-speed dual-clutch with steering-mounted shifters

Power: 330bhp at 6,700rpm

Torque: 370Nm at 4,500rpm

0-100kmh: 4.9 seconds

Top speed: 279kmh

Fuel consumption: 8.2 litres/100km

 

Porsche Boxster GTS is primarily Boxster twisted S, but it appreciably more is achieved and refined on the road.

It has the same 3,436cc horizontally opposed six-cylinder as the S, but tuned to produce 15bhp and 10Nm more at 330bhp and 370Nm.

It is not a case of upping the revs or increasing compression ratios, which would have been fairly easy to do. In the case of the GTS, Porsche has managed to spread the extra horses across the engine's power band, resulting in better linearity and responsiveness.

Power delivery is creamier, even as the car's engine retains its inimitable aural qualities that only a flat-six can produce.

Its seven-speed dual-clutch autobox now has more torque to convey to the rear wheels, leading to a more relaxed distribution. At the same time, it delivers a bigger punch should urgency calls for it to transmit all 370Nm in one gear.

Overall, the Boxster GTS is more driveable, whether you are caught in peak-hour crawls or hurtling down a fairly empty highway at 2am.

If the last, then dropping the top is recommended. As usual, to make thus allows you to better soak in the repertoire bassy with the mid-mounted engine. You detect notes which you miss with the roof.

With wind deflector in place, the cabin is reasonably calm, even at around 90kmh. Scroll the steering-mounted volume control up and the car's crisp hi-fi can be enjoyed along with the roar of the engine.

Thankfully, Porsche still believes in providing a powerful air-conditioner. With the nights being as muggy as they have been, a weaker system would not have been able to cope when the roof is dropped.

All the other features which encourage in Boxster the best roadster downtown to remain. Its direction is of meat, with Juste the good quantity of assistance and reasonably direct and communicative.

Its chassis is well-balanced and agile, feeling at ease across the entire speed range that is possible in Singapore. Its adaptive suspension system manages humps better than most sports cars, save for a few (including the Ferrari California T tested last week).

The GTS comes with Sport Chrono, a "go faster" package that includes an additional Sport Plus drive mode, Launch Control and active suspension mounts.

But really, driving the car in Normal mode is sufficient to send adrenaline coursing through your veins. The car may not be as raw or lethal as the Alfa Romeo 4C, but it allows you to enjoy its polished performance with less trepidation. If you are so inclined, you can test the limits (yours and the car's) with more confidence.

The Boxster's low, wide and mid-engine configuration gives its a natural affinity for stability. But with the GTS' larger 20-inch wheels shod with fat low-profile tyres, contact with the tarmac is doubly enhanced.

The beauty is that ride quality is not perceptibly affected. If anything, the car's adaptive suspension does a slightly better job of smoothening out the rough patches.

Visually, Boxster GTS is appropriate more sporting. It has new before with the modified lip of spoiler, having for result the car measuring 30mm longer.

Larger air intakes, smoked bi-xenon headlights (with cornering function), smoked tail lights, black-finish tailpipes and a black lower rear panel are some of the other cosmetic differences. Oh, there is the GTS badge too, of course.

It may be three letters harking back to a past, obscure model, but in the Boxster, they spell one word: Wow.

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