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Spyshots: Porsche Boxster 4-Cylinder Turbo Testing Begins

Improved low-end torque, reduced consumption of fuel and better performance numbers are just some of the changes we can expect from Porsche's next Boxster, expected to arrive in 2017. Four-cylinder turbocharged engine development has already started, with a mockup based on the Boxster emerging for testing on the Nurburgring.
2017 Porsche Boxster 4-Cylinder Turbo 9 photos
2017 Porsche Boxster 4-Cylinder Turbo2017 Porsche Boxster 4-Cylinder Turbo2017 Porsche Boxster 4-Cylinder Turbo2017 Porsche Boxster 4-Cylinder Turbo2017 Porsche Boxster 4-Cylinder Turbo2017 Porsche Boxster 4-Cylinder Turbo2017 Porsche Boxster 4-Cylinder Turbo2017 Porsche Boxster 4-Cylinder Turbo
Both it and the Cayman will receive this new type of engine, which is expected to make up to 395 hp and find its way into the 911 eventually. Porsche has confirmed in a German media report that both its small sports cars will be available for the first time with flat-four boxer engines back in March.

“We will continue with the downsizing strategy and develop a new four-cylinder boxer engine, which will see service in the next-generation Boxster and Cayman,” said Porsche CEO Matthias Muller in an interview with Auto Motor und Sport magazine.

However, a new report from Motor Trend that emerged yesterday contradicts this. In it, Johnny Liebermann says he's learned that what Porsche is actually building is an inline-4, not a flat-4 turbo. According to that report, that flat-four would not see the light of day. The same report does, however, talk a bit of sense when referring to the hybridization of future 911 Turbo models.

This new engine would also be different to the one that's been fitted to the Macan base model. "Bespoke" seems to be the word we should use here!

We're inclined not to believe this latest story, even though it claims development of the inline engine has already started. Most turbo-4s are 2-liter engines, but Porsche would need something bigger to reach the 350 hp that this project needs in order to improve on current output numbers. Why would they start development of a whole new block when they have so much experience with the 3.8-liter turbo.

In addition, a straight-4 Porsche sportscar frankly doesn't sound that special. And we don't know any Boxster/Cayman/911 owners who don't think their cars are different to all the others.

Besides Subaru, Porsche is the only major car company to use boxer engines on a regular basis. Boxers are different from inline or V ones because their pistons are horizontally opposed. This means more of the weight is lower down in the car, which is excellent for handling. Porsche also offered inline four-cylinder engined sportscar into the 1990s.

Here's our say on this extremely controversial subject: If Porsche is that bent on making straight-4 turbo engines, they should just bring back the 928 and 924. Dropping the boxer engines could be a huge disaster for them, financially speaking.


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