2024 Porsche 718 Boxster Style Edition
Photography: Jeff Voth

Road Test: 2024 Porsche 718 Boxster Style Edition

Few cars I’ve driven of late have garnered as much attention as this 2024 Porsche 718 Boxster Style Edition, and all those waves, smiles and thumbs up can be attributed mainly to its Ruby Star Neo paint. Sure, the Style Edition’s white hood stripes and Porsche script blazoned on its flanks catch the eye too, but it’s that fuscia hue that seduces. Porsche nerds will know Ruby Star Neo is a nod to the limited 1990s 964 Carrera RS that came in Rubystone Red. The young lady who yelled “I LOVE your car!” only knows it’s super cool and fun. And she certainly doesn’t know Ruby Star Neo adds $2,950 to the sportscar’s bottom line.

2024 Porsche 718 Boxster Style Edition side
2024 Porsche 718 Boxster Style Edition

With a starting price of $86,200, the 2024 Boxster 718 Boxster Style Edition is $7,600 more that the base 2.0L four-cylinder Boxster on which it is based. As there are no mechanical upgrades, the Style Edition is just that – a styling exercise that adds visual pizzaz to an already achingly desirable two-seat drop top.

Powertrain: The 718 Boxster launched in 2017 with (gasp!) four-cylinder turbo power, replacing the sonorous naturally aspirated flat-sixes. This didn’t go down well with the Porsche folk, and I’ll admit to grumbling quite a bit about this grumbly engine. But jumping into this base Boxster with its 300 horsepower, 280 pound-feet of torque 2.0L turbo flat-four makes me wonder what all the fuss was about.

2024 Porsche 718 Boxster Style Edition

It’s a strong, eager, and punchy unit, and while it doesn’t sing the flat-six siren song, it gets the job done and imbues the little roadster with some serious mid-range punch. Its torque plateau is flatter than The Donald’s combover. Plus, in Sport mode the tailpipes emit some cool pops and burbles on overrun. Turbo lag is minimal thanks to some clever engineering. The throttle briefly stays open when lifting off, timing is retarded, fuel is cut and the wastegate closed, essentially pumping air through to the turbo to keep it spinning. Porsche claims the base 718 Boxster Style Edition with manual transmission scoots to 100 km/h in 5.1 seconds. Opt for the PDK dual-clutch transmission and that drops to 4.9 seconds.

2024 Porsche 718 Boxster Style Edition

Exterior: The 718 Boxster is a beautifully proportioned little roadster, and this Style Edition ups the game with Porsche side graphics, hood stripe, black tailpipes, “Boxster” embossed fabric top and 20-inch Spyder alloys in white or black. As noted earlier, the optional Ruby Star Nero paint brings this specimen all kinds of love. Although it should be noted not everybody in enamoured with this classic hue. My wife for one. I, on the other hand, wouldn’t hesitate to drop the necessary $2,950 for the smile it brought to my face every morning when seeing it in my driveway. The Style Edition is also available in Black, Guards Red, Racing Yellow, GT Silver Metallic, Gentian Blue, Agate Grey Metallic, Adventuring Green Metallic, Chalk, Arctic Grey, Shark Blue, Carmine Red and Ice Grey Metallic. The roof is either black or red.

2024 Porsche 718 Boxster Style Edition

Interior: Inside, the Style Edition gets illuminated door sills, chalk interior stitching, heated steering wheel, heated leather seats and embossed headrest. As with all Porsche sportscars, the driving position is perfect, and the seats hug in all the right places while also delivering long distance comfort. The one-touch powered top drops and stows in about fifteen seconds. This tester sported $2,310 upgraded black leather with deviated chalk stitching, $1,330 Bose surround sound, Sport Seats Plus (2-way), $2,460 navigation with Porsche Connect, $2,380 Sport Chrono Package, and a brushed aluminum gear lever worth $350. The $$2,470 Premium Package brings seat ventilation, power folding mirrors, lane change assist, and more. As this interior has been around since 2017, there’s still a plethora of physical buttons for audio, HVAC and driver controls. Ahead of the driver is a three-gauge cluster with a large tachometer front and centre.

What this cabin lacks is any meaningful storage. There’s really no place to put a phone, and the flimsy Rube Goldberg cup holders that spring from the dash are very Porsche in that they thoroughly discourage drinking coffee while performing the scared act of driving. I get it.

2024 Porsche 718 Boxster Style Edition

The optional Sport Chrono Package here ($2,380) brings the dash mounted analogue chronometer, steering wheel mounted drive mode dial and a more aggressive Sport Plus drive mode.

Infotainment: There’s no digital overkill here as the 718 has been with us since 2017. The central touchscreen is modestly sized, but we do get volume and tuning knobs along with a general suite of apps and functions. You’ll find two USB ports, and Apple CarPlay integration is standard, although Android auto is still not on offer with this older generation Porsche system. The optional navigation is responsive, and the graphics can be ported to the gauge cluster.

As for the upgraded Bose system, it sounds fine in the driveway, but on the move the engine and road noise in the Boxster’s cabin essentially neuter any semblance of an audiophile experience.

2024-Porsche-718-Boxster-Style-Edition-seat backs
2024 Porsche 718 Boxster Style Edition

Drive: The drive is why one buys a Porsche sportscar, and it only takes a few moments behind the wheel of the 2024 Boxster Style Edition to feel the intrinsic, intangible, magical “thing” these mid-engine Porsches deliver, elevating them above everything else on the road. The 718 is balanced and stable in the corners, and the brilliantly communicative steering puts the driver right at the pointy end of a sublime sportscar experience. This tester has the six-speed manual transmission, and it’s a good one – accurate low-effort shifter and smooth, progressive clutch. Hit a stretch of serpentine road and the resulting three-way conversation between man, machine and macadam is pure poetry. This tester did not have the optional PASM adaptive damping that lowers the car by 10mm and firms up in Sport and Sport Plus modes. Maybe that was Porsche Canada’s strategy – to show the standard suspension is still thoroughly rewarding. The Style Edition also settles into a decent long-legged cruiser on the highway, engine and road noise notwithstanding.

The Porsche 718 Boxster gives one of the most engaging and rewarding driving experiences at any price, even in this base 2.0L 300-hp trim. And folks, we’re reaching the end of an era, as these are the last of the ICE (internal combustion engine) powered Boxsters. Act now, and you can get yours in Ruby Star Nero.

2024 Porsche 718 Boxster Style Edition
Price as tested: $101,650.00 (CAD)
Freight: $2,850.00
Configuration: mid-engine/rear-wheel drive
Engine/transmission: 2.0-litre turbocharged horizontally-opposed four-cylinder/ 6-speed manual transmission
Power/torque: 300 horsepower/ 280 lb-ft of torque
Fuel (capacity): Premium (54 L)
Fuel economy ratings (L/100 km): 12.0 city, 9.5 highway, 10.9 combined
Observed fuel economy (L/100 km): 10.4
Warranties: 4-years/80,000km
Competitors: BMW Z4, Porsche 718 Cayman, Toyota Supra

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