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Old 01-29-2011, 12:50 PM   #1
I-Man
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Default What do I need to know before buying a used Cayman S?

My wife and I are in the market for a used Cayman. I insisted on an S and in exchange she gets to pick the color. The car will not be a daily driver and will probably only see about 5K miles per year.

We stopped by Momentum Porsche here in Houston and did some window shopping on their CPO inventory. Other than that, all the research I've done has been on this forum, Edmunds, etc. I know what I know, but I don't know what I don't know, hence this post!

We're looking to spend in the mid-30s for a low mileage (<30K) example. We're leaning towards a CPO as we're leery of repair costs, and it seems that the reconditioning process that the CPO cars go through is very thorough (the two CPO Caymans at the dealership looked immaculate). That said, I cede to your opinions on whether you think CPO is worth it.

We're leaning towards 2006-2008 models s they seem to fall into our price range. It also seems that the 2009s have had problems with the DFI systems. Is there anything on the 2009+ models that you think we'd miss out on?

Are there any other things that you think a new Cayman buyer should know before making a purchase? Anything that you wish you had known before you bought yours?

Any advice is very much appreciated!
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Old 01-29-2011, 01:37 PM   #2
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If you can find a CPO in your price range, then I personally would recommend that. Porsches are pretty reliable cars, but when something does break, they can be very expensive to fix.

If you aren't in to taking your car to the track (and it sounds like you aren't), or want the PDK transmission, then I think you will be happy with the 1st gen cars. They have some issues when driven hard on the track, but rarely have problems on the street. Other than minor cosmetic differences, and the DFI engine in the S, there wasn't a huge change in the Gen 2 cars.

There were some problems like "trunk clunk", clutch, and catalytic converter issues on the early 06's - but most of those would have already been fixed by now (or certainly covered under extended warranty).

If you don't buy a CPO car, then most people would strongly recommend a PPI (pre-purchase inspection) by an experienced Porsche mechanic, including a read-out of the over-revs on the DME (ECU).

By the way, you will find much more information, and an active Cayman community over on Planet-9.com, or the CaymanRegister.org (if you are a PCA member).
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Old 01-30-2011, 11:49 AM   #3
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I concur completely with KS-CS. I've been in the market for a Gen1 Cayman for about 6 months and just put a deposit on a car yesterday. I've searched extensively everyday, so I feel like I have a good knowledge of the market. First, you won't find a Gen2 car - or even a Gen1 2008 S model - in the mid 30's with less than 30,000 miles on it. So, if that's your budget, you're looking at 2006 - 2007 cars exclusively. My opinion is that CPO is the way to go as you get both a warranty and ensure - because of the CPO process - that the car probably won't need brakes/tires in the near future. You should also request a "DME"
(over rev) report that will tell you wether the car has been pushed consistently at high RPMS. Happy to continue to help/answer questions as folks on these forums have been very helpful to me!
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Old 01-30-2011, 12:01 PM   #4
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Thanks so much for the advice! I think that we're shooting for a 2007 based on the price and the fact that it's virtually identical to the 2008.

I had heard about doing a scan to assess the car's previous life but didn't know what it was called. I'll definitely as for a DME.

Congrats on your new car, ssc5174!
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Old 01-30-2011, 12:50 PM   #5
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No problem at all. As I said, folks on these forums have been very helpful so I'm happy to continue that trend. I was looking for EXACTLY the same thing you were with the same budget, so I'm happy to help.

Most 2007 CS that I've found - in good condition, with less than 30k miles - are right around $40,000 or more. Some dealers won't move off that price or move very little. Others, will offer a lower price that EXCLUDES the CPO warranty (about $2,000 less usually). Some - and I hate this - will list the car as a CPO car with an attractive price but then when you inquire will indicate the CPO is at an additional cost.

Having said all this, there dealers that are willing to deal. In fact, I've talked to Roger Beasley Porsche in Austin about a black 2006 CS with 32k miles. They're asking $36 but my sense is that they'd take $34k (apparently, somone offered $32 recently and they declined). Check it out...maybe what you're looking for in your neck of the woods.
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Old 02-01-2011, 02:43 PM   #6
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You're getting spot-on advice from KS-CS and ssc5174. After my C4S was totaled last October I lucked out big time and found a pristine CPO 2007 CS with 10,700 miles on it (my avatar). The dealer had started out asking $47,000, and I bought it for $38,000, with 19" Carrera S wheels and new Conti tires (for sale on this and other boards) plus a new set of 18" Boxster II wheels for snow tires. I think I got a great deal, and I love the car. It's not quite as luxurious as the C4S, but is definitely more fun to drive.

Based on my extensive search in the entire eastern half of the U.S., I very much doubt that you'll find a Gen. 2 car in your price range, and certainly not a low mileage CPO. By the way, I'd consider only an S, and unless you intend to track the car, I'd forget about PASM.

Good luck finding the right car.
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Old 02-01-2011, 07:09 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ccbesq View Post
By the way, I'd consider only an S, and unless you intend to track the car, I'd forget about PASM.

Good luck finding the right car.
Why not the PASM? It lowers by 10mm I believe which would help the gap. I too am considering the change to a CS, but was thinking the 10mm drop would help appearance.
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Old 02-01-2011, 07:16 PM   #8
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would anyone buy a cayman s with 90-105k 2006 on it?

sorry for jumping on this thread still trying to figure out how to post a new one.
Thanks for all the help
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Old 02-01-2011, 10:13 PM   #9
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You know it's a great car but when you can find examples with 30k miles for mid $30's (loaded S models) gentley used.....the differential for a high mileage car just doesn't seem worth it.....spend a bit more and get a lower mileage car.
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Old 02-02-2011, 10:53 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Optical TDI View Post
Why not the PASM? It lowers by 10mm I believe which would help the gap. I too am considering the change to a CS, but was thinking the 10mm drop would help appearance.
I've read (on Planet9, I believe) that PASM is really not a benefit for the street - the softer setting is too soft, and the sport setting is too stiff. Before I bought my car this was confirmed by a good friend and long-time multiple Porsche owner who has a CS with PASM. On the other hand, Eibach lowering springs (or maybe HR or other brands) will provide the drop without compromising the ride quality. Just what I've read and been told - others will undoubtedly disagree . . .
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Old 02-02-2011, 02:39 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lasifi View Post
would anyone buy a cayman s with 90-105k 2006 on it? . . .
Donor car for Cayman Spec build?
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Old 02-04-2011, 11:57 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ccbesq View Post
I've read (on Planet9, I believe) that PASM is really not a benefit for the street - the softer setting is too soft, and the sport setting is too stiff. Before I bought my car this was confirmed by a good friend and long-time multiple Porsche owner who has a CS with PASM. On the other hand, Eibach lowering springs (or maybe HR or other brands) will provide the drop without compromising the ride quality. Just what I've read and been told - others will undoubtedly disagree . . .
Not to disappoint you - I strongly disagree. Based on 4 1/2 years enjoying my daily driver '06 CS with PASM, it is a simply magical suspension. I do track my car so having a double duty 1 button changeable set-up is obviously great, but PASM also provides benefits for the street not offered by any aftermarket suspension. It combines a comfortable, compliant ride (even with my 19" street wheels) that keeps my wife happy (although my SpeedArt gets an occasional comment from her), yet the suspension tightens up instantly when needed (e.g., a high speed sweeper). And, each individual shock is adjusted for conditions at its corner of the car. That said, the standard suspension is superb, just not magical and the decision should be largely made on your personal preferences.

I think you'll find from some research on PASM dynamics that its "Normal" range runs from noticeably softer than standard to noticeably stiffer than standard - all automatically, as conditions demand. "Sport" is best left for the track or decent highways.

I've attached some info from Porsche which you might find helpful.
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File Type: doc PASM EXPLAINED.doc (21.0 KB, 68 views)
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Old 02-06-2011, 12:16 PM   #13
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STLPCA,
Thanks for the information on PASM. I was under the impression it simply stiffened the suspension for more agressive driving, but now understand that it is a dynamic system working in normal and sport mode according to driving conditions. Cool
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Old 02-09-2011, 01:22 PM   #14
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My advice would be don't pay extra for an LSD equipped vehicle unless it's one of ours. The factory LSD is no upgrade.
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Old 02-09-2011, 04:17 PM   #15
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Factory LSD is garbage, even on the GT3's. They wear out prematurely.

Funny thing is that my PCNA club warns people to leave PASM on default and not put in on sport. Instructors will get in the car and specifically ask you to see it. As well I did a track event with the Porsche World Road show, they specifically told us not to change the PASM setting before heading out on the track.
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Old 02-09-2011, 04:17 PM
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