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Friday, August 29, 2008

Porsche Direct Injection trickling down to Boxster, Cayman

By Paul Horrell

Porsche is advancing in its conversion to direct gas injection. Following the Cayennes last year and 911s recently, the Boxster S and Cayman S also get the system late this autumn. The Cayman S goes from 295 horsepower to 320 horsepower, even though engine size remains 3.4 liters. Torque rises from 251 pound-feet to about 275 pound-feet.

All Boxsters and Caymans, not just the S models, also get the option of seven-speed PDK double-clutch transmission, replacing the Tiptronic S. As with the 911s, this trans will mean the two-pedal Cayman will be quicker to 60 and about as economical as the manual. In fact the PDK Cayman S will crack 5 seconds to 60 mph, we hear, and will be available for the first time with a limited-slip diff, bringing its performance even closer to the 911's. The 997-generation 911 Carrera started life four years ago with just 5 horsepower more.

The Boxster S goes the same way: 3.4 liters and direct injection for the S, but with 310 horsepower. The manual S models see a 10 percent fuel economy gain over their predecessors, while the PDK models are 15 percent better at the gas pump than the old port injection Tiptronic S cars.

Base Boxster and Cayman stick with port injection, but do have a capacity increase, from 2.7 to 2.9 liters. Power is up from 245 to 265 horsepower (Cayman) and 255 (Boxster). Again, PDK will be available. There will be a slight economy gain with the bigger engine, even with the manual transmission.

There are cosmetic tweaks to go with the tech upgrades. The front lights are more deeply scooped into the bumper, and some models get LED running lights. At the tail, there's also a new lamp cluster that cuts a little more into the bumper. Inside, expect revised screen and ergonomics for the infotainment system.