Happy 21st - my looong Boxster story - Rennlist - Porsche Discussion Forums

Notices

Happy 21st - my looong Boxster story

Old 04-03-2018, 09:49 AM
  #1  
Geza
User
Thread Starter
 
Geza's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: NJ
Posts: 167
Default Happy 21st - my looong Boxster story

Twenty-one years ago today, I took delivery of a 1997 Boxster. The story begins in the fall of 1994, when, after reading car magazine articles on the Boxster concept car, I walked into the local Porsche dealer and plopped down a $500 refundable deposit to get on “the list”. I was 31 years of age at the time, and the dealer was happy to collect interest on my money for a few years, with no guarantee the car will even be built!

Two years later, car magazines started doing reviews on the first newly designed Porsche in 21 years (since the 928) – the first normal road car to employ a water cooled flat six and Brembo mono-block brake calipers - the ultimate savior of Porsche as an independent car company for years to come. I collected every magazine I could, and made a videotape copy of the Boxster reviews on the Motorweek and Autoweek TV shows. I also taped the original 2 Boxster commercials, both of which first aired during the 1997 Superbowl.

In mid-January of ‘97, the dealership sent me an invitation to the “Boxster Introduction Party”, which I attended, and walked away with additional brochures, an ordering guide, and a few other trinkets. Back then, dealerships were provided with a base (striped down) Guards Red manual as a demo, which stood front and center at the party – everyone there poked and prodded it – this was very new stuff back then. In the weeks to follow I poured over the information deciding, with my limited budget, how I wanted to spec my car while I waited my turn.

In early February, I got the call to come in, take a test drive of that demo, and spec my order. Prior to this, after hours upon hours of self-debate, I decided on Glacier White, with the only options being Boxster Red full leather, upgraded amp with door speakers, and black Boxster logo floor mats. Since Glacier White was a new color for ’97, I was a little hesitant - I had never seen it in person - only on the printed color swatch in the brochure. Wouldn’t you know, when I showed up to the dealer, there was a brand new 993 parked there in Glacier White - it was meant to be! From that test drive, the things that stand out the most in my memory is the wonderful, wining sound of that flat-6 over my shoulders and those bulbous, red fenders rising over the front and rear flanks. I drove the car top down as the Jersey weather was cooperative that winter day. After the drive, I placed my order – now the waiting begins – the dealer told me it will be about 6 months, putting delivery in middle summer – not bad!

With my order in, I spent evenings reviewing all the car info and magazine reviews over and over such that it all got burned in my brain – I knew a lot about ’97 Boxsters! Then, out of the blue, I got a call from the dealer; it was Tuesday, April 1st: “Your car’s in.” At first I thought it was an April Fools joke! Nope, it’s in – now, I need to figure out how I’m going to pay for this thing – I was expecting a few more months, and it was my intention all along to pay cash! Well I got the money together, provided a bank check and took delivery 21 years ago today, April 3rd. – the car was just under $47K all in, including a Federal “Luxury Tax” they had at the time. To my surprise, PORSCHE logo mats were actually delivered – it turns out Boxster logo ones weren’t available that early on! Interesting tidbit: seven years later to the date, I went on a first date with a young lady who is now my wife! April 3rd has been pretty good to me!

Shortly after taking delivery, I went to a local Porsche shop to have a PCA tech done so I could run it in a HPDE event at Pocono – things were a lot more lenient back then regarding roll bars and such. At Tech, it got a bit more scrutiny than the other cars they checked that day – they actually put it on the lift and a bunch of Porsche folks got their first look and the underside of this all new Sports Car - it was new to everyone - You did not see any on the road for quite a while!

Autoweek magazine used to run a feature called “Autofile”, perhaps they still do. I submitted my write-up on the Boxster, and was actually published in their article – I have a copy of the issue stowed away with all the other Boxster related stuff I’ve collected and set aside.

Fast forward 21 years: Today, I still have my first year, Stuttgart built 986. It is in nearly flawless condition, and almost all original, including things like the wiper blades and windshield washer fluid! I’ve done all the maintenance on it myself, and it’s been extremely reliable. It has seen a handful of track days (I used other cars for HPDEs in the many years I did them) but it has primarily been used commuting on nicer days and taking joy rides – in its 56K miles, it has not been babied from a driving perspective - always sees full throttle and its redline! Other than regular maintenance and tune-up parts, only the front brake pads, mass flow sensor, conv. top motor & cables, battery (2nd replacement), tires (5th set) and an instrument panel bulb are not original. The horn recently failed, so I have to troubleshoot that. It still has the original bad ignition switch (subject to a recall – which I never had done), ubiquitous illuminated airbag light and its almost original slight RMS leak! The top and plastic window, which I calculated to have been lowered over 2000 times, are still in pretty good shape, a testament to Porsche quality.

Because I’ve been working from home for the last 10 years, and acquired a new “fun car” back in ’16, the Boxster has been relegated to “preservation mode”, where I only drive it once a month or so. It only traveled 234 miles in 2017 and 526 in 2016, but it still fires up right away, drives wonderfully and always puts a smile on my face – they are very special cars, so simple compared to modern cars – no nannies except for ABS and there is actually a mechanical cable that connects the pedal to the throttle! I never covered it in my garage, because I enjoy looking at it!

For those new to the Boxster, congratulations, you are associated with a special car. I hope you enjoyed reading my history as someone who has been around one since before the beginning; and thanks for making it down this far – hopefully, others will post their own Boxster story, I know I’d be interested in reading them. Here are a few pictures.





Geza is offline  
Old 04-03-2018, 10:31 AM
  #2  
96Tiger
User
 
Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: Charleston, SC
Posts: 145
Default

Thanks for posting, I love Porsche stories like yours especially when they are written by the original owners. Glacier white looks great, poor thing just needs to be driven more!
96Tiger is offline  
Old 04-03-2018, 12:02 PM
  #3  
paulofto
User
 
paulofto's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
Posts: 162
Default

Great story. And beautiful car!
paulofto is offline  
Old 04-04-2018, 11:20 PM
  #4  
gth452
User
 
gth452's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: Southern New Hampshire
Posts: 18
Default

Awesome story! I am always envious of those who took such a risk when you were young and can lay claim to owning a special car for over 20 years. I had a similar story in 1998 when I bought my first 911, a much unloved 74 Targa (for much less than you paid for your Boxster) and then sold after my son was born in 2002. I regretted it for the next 15 years until my wife challenged me to find it again. I did and bought it back. Won't make that mistake again.

For what it is worth, I think you chose the best color combination possible with the Boxster - white with red interior. On a recent Saturday winter blues craigslist impulse buy, I just added a 97 Boxster to the fleet - Arena red with gray interior. I am really amazed how good this car is to drive. It only has 45K miles on it and although I have only owned it a month or so when I compare it to my 996 Turbo X50 and my 74 911 Targa, I think the Boxster might the best all around car of all of them. The handling, the sound and the complete analog feel to the car is simply awesome - and what I paid for it, I should have been arrested for theft. It cost 10% of a 718 Boxster - is it 10% of the fun? To an middle-aged guy like me, I don't think so.....

Love to buy yours if you are ever thinking of selling it ! (but don't ever sell it, you will immediately regret it)

Thanks for sharing your story and the pictures of your car.
gth452 is offline  
Old 04-05-2018, 01:29 AM
  #5  
murphyslaw1978
Super User
 
murphyslaw1978's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 4,448
Default

Holy cow, 21 years is a long time, yet the Boxster still seems fresh to me. Great read, great story, thanks for sharing. But tell me this - how the heck can you still have the original windshield washer fluid?!
murphyslaw1978 is offline  
Old 04-05-2018, 09:40 AM
  #6  
Geza
User
Thread Starter
 
Geza's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: NJ
Posts: 167
Default

Thanks everyone. Buying back your Targa is quite the story too, gth452 - kudos to your wife for pushing you in that direction! Congrats and good luck with the '97! Though I suppose I'm partial, I think it's the best year, no side airbags and all. I love the Glacier White, but, driving in to work one morning circa 2000, I ended up behind a newer Boxster in Biarritz White - I was a bit jealous. I would have been all over that with the Red interior. Mine was always intended to be a keeper - preserved and as original as possible.

You've got me thinking murphyslaw1978 about the washer fluid - I think I only used it once and definitely never refilled it. I suppose I should try it again, perhaps it evaporated away! But, if I do try it and the pump doesn't work, I no longer have plausible deniability.
Geza is offline  
Old 04-05-2018, 04:52 PM
  #7  
tone40
User
 
tone40's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Whittier, CA
Posts: 293
Default Love your story. I have a similar one, although not as extensive.


I got my first drive in my cousin's '97 silver with red leather interior when at a family beach gathering. I only drove in the beach parking lot, but I was hooked. I started my search, then waited for the higher power S version coming within 6 months. I got to see one at the OC Auto Show and spent the next hour catching glimpses of it on the Porsche display turntable.

I called around the multiple regional Porsche dealers for the earliest allocation. I waited for 4 months until I got delivery. Like you, during my wait I read every article and saw every video I could. I even test drove many of the '99 base models. I changed colors on my order from Arena Red to Ocean Blue after seeing that color in person in the evening at Beverly Hills Porsche.

I took delivery at Circle Porsche in Long Beach. I couldn't believe how perfectly prepared it was! Driving home I was worried that someone would wipe me out or take it from me by force.

That year I got some many compliments on the car, since the color and the car were new. I did a few cosmetic upgrades over the years (De-ambered all the lights, installed Fikse Mach 5 forged 2 piece wheels, silver hood crest and upgraded audiophile stereo).

The journey was a blast and well worth the effort. I still get a few compliments now. This car has given me 109K miles of perma-grin. It has only let me down twice- broken clutch hydraulic line (damaged by a tire installer without my knowledge) and a dead battery. She has been very reliable.

The pic is from an elevated road above the Santa Monica bay. Taken about 9 years ago. The car looks very similar now.
tone40 is offline  
Old 04-25-2018, 03:44 PM
  #8  
Bill in VA
User
 
Join Date: Feb 2018
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 13
Default

Congratulations. On 11/24/18 it will be 20 years since I picked up my Arctic Silver/Boxster Red Leather. Was a daily driver until I retired. 100,400 miles now. The most reliable car I have ever owned. But not adding many miles to it as I now also have a 718 Cayman S. But still love that 986.
Bill in VA is offline  
Old 04-25-2018, 10:09 PM
  #9  
murphyslaw1978
Super User
 
murphyslaw1978's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 4,448
Default

Originally Posted by Bill in VA View Post
...my Arctic Silver/Boxster...The most reliable car I have ever owned...
One of the reasons I tell folks to get a Boxster if they don’t need the rear seats. To me, the 986 and 996 are very similar in many ways, although the Boxster is less money.
murphyslaw1978 is offline  
Old 05-05-2018, 10:36 AM
  #10  
digs
User
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: bristol county ,ma
Posts: 76
Default

I just picked up a 2003 , silver with black ,37000 mi . Will get plates on Monday . This is the beginning of my story . This is my 9th Porsche .It will need the IMS updated ? Not sure how soon I will get to that ? Otherwise I am excited about the car !
digs is offline  
Old 08-18-2018, 10:44 PM
  #11  
Geza
User
Thread Starter
 
Geza's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: NJ
Posts: 167
Default

Welcome home to the Boxster's 10 year older sibling - big difference between Glacier and Grand Prix White!


Geza is offline  
Old 08-18-2018, 11:37 PM
  #12  
Semitone
User
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Posts: 273
Default

Great story. Congrats to holding onto her over the years.
Semitone is online now  
Old 08-19-2018, 12:10 AM
  #13  
boisenelson
Addict
Rennlist Member
 
boisenelson's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2018
Location: Southwest Idaho
Posts: 173
Default

Great story and thanks for sharing. I still have the 2003 986 I purchased new. It's got 34,142 miles on the clock and I've only put 4k miles on it in the last 8 years. I do annual oil/fluid changes on it and spent 8 hours last Sunday completing it's service. The car has zero leaks of any sort and has never shown any metal in the oil, magnetic drain plug, or filter. I've had many cars since I purchased this one and currently own two other Porches besides the 986. I just can't bring myself to sell this car because it was the first Porsche that I purchased new, and I've just got a soft spot for it. It's not worth much (base with a Tip) and I guess the car is worth more to me due to my history with it.....I bought it new in Honolulu when I lived/worked there and it was my daily driver for 3 years...than the money I'd get for it. I shipped it back with me when I moved back to the mainland and it's held it's place in the garage/shop ever since. Maybe someday it will appreciate in value but that's not why I keep it around
boisenelson is online now  
Old 08-19-2018, 12:38 AM
  #14  
mikefocke
User
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Sanford NC
Posts: 737
Default

Amazing the parallels in my history and the stories in this thread. Before kids or even a wife I had 3 red sports cars, even a mid-engine Porsche. 914-4. Little 85HP fun machine but it was built before rust proofing and I could see problems coming because I regularly took it into eastern ski country and on salted roads. Sold it and got married. She says she would never have been interested in me if I had the red sports car. Fast forward 25+ years and she says to me "stop looking at the classifieds, just go buy one". So I did and then 6 months later I totaled it and bought another. Silver both but I could have gone red. Retired. Got tired of moving it out of the way of a SUV that was needed for hauling. Didn't put but 500 miles a year on it and no service within 50 miles. It was time someone else enjoyed it. Sold it and I regret it to this day. That car is at least with its 5th owner last I heard.
mikefocke is offline  
Old 08-19-2018, 01:03 AM
  #15  
boisenelson
Addict
Rennlist Member
 
boisenelson's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2018
Location: Southwest Idaho
Posts: 173
Thumbs up

Originally Posted by mikefocke View Post
Amazing the parallels in my history and the stories in this thread. Before kids or even a wife I had 3 red sports cars, even a mid-engine Porsche. 914-4. Little 85HP fun machine but it was built before rust proofing and I could see problems coming because I regularly took it into eastern ski country and on salted roads. Sold it and got married. She says she would never have been interested in me if I had the red sports car. Fast forward 25+ years and she says to me "stop looking at the classifieds, just go buy one". So I did and then 6 months later I totaled it and bought another. Silver both but I could have gone red. Retired. Got tired of moving it out of the way of a SUV that was needed for hauling. Didn't put but 500 miles a year on it and no service within 50 miles. It was time someone else enjoyed it. Sold it and I regret it to this day. That car is at least with its 5th owner last I heard.
mikefocke,

My first Porsche was a 1974 914 1.8L that I purchased in 1984. The rest is history
boisenelson is online now  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Quick Reply: Happy 21st - my looong Boxster story


Contact Us About Us Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service

© 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.
 
  • Ask a Question
    Get answers from community experts
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: