Several people complained about the Porsche 718 Boxster’s move from a conventional flat-six engine to a turbocharged flat-four.
While Porsche has reinstated the six-cylinder engine in flagship models such as the GTS 4.0 and the Spyder RS, the company is also looking to boost the credibility of the entry-level four-cylinder Boxster. That is exactly what the 2023 Boxster T does.
The Boxster T’s philosophy is simple: take the whole arsenal of Porsche’s handling choices and throw them on the basic model.
The Boxster T, like its bigger brother, the 911 Carrera T, is powered by an entry-level engine, but unlike the 911, it doesn’t reduce weight by eliminating seats and thinning the glass—though the somewhat annoying loop door pulls may save a few grams.
Our Boxster T weighed 3069 pounds, which was only 10 pounds more than a base manual Boxster we examined in 2017. European cars are lighter because of an infotainment deletion that our backup camera restrictions do not allow.
2023 Porsche 718 Boxster T Interior
The inside is also given special attention. The Boxster T comes standard with two-way power-adjustable seats upholstered in a blend of leather and grippy fabric surfaces, and they’re fantastic, providing plenty of comfort and support whether you’re driving sedately or aggressively.
The optional 718 T Interior package ($2770) added contrasting stitching, seat embroidery, and color-matched seatbelts. You still get the plastic-fantastic basic cabin, but your hands are unlikely to stray from the wheel very frequently to massage the dash.
Porsche’s Sport Chrono option is also standard, adding a dashboard clock, a drive-mode button on the steering wheel, rev-matching downshifts, and launch control on cars equipped with the seven-speed PDK dual-clutch automatic transmission.
2023 Porsche 718 Boxster T Exterior
Despite its wider wheels, the Boxster T’s adaptive dampers do an excellent job of soaking up Michigan’s highly rutted roads and providing a smooth ride that keeps body movements in control while negotiating curves.
Sport mode stiffens things up but does not necessarily enhance accuracy. Although the 20-inch wheels add a smidgeon of unsprung mass, the steering remains precise and eager to inform you of what the front tires are feeling. We recorded a strong 1.03 g of pavement adhesion around the 300-foot skidpad.
Here’s what your $76,050 buys you on the Boxster T. The PASM sport suspension from Porsche provides variable damping and lowers the vehicle by 0.8 inches. The 20-inch wheels add a touch of flair while preserving enough sidewall rubber to keep the ride quality intact.
Active engine mounts separate the flat-motions fours from the rest of the body by adjusting their rigidity, while brake-based torque vectoring improves turn-in and corner stability.
2023 Porsche 718 Boxster T Performance
With only 300 horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque, the Boxster T lacks the sheer speed of a GTS 4.0 or even a S model, but it’s not like waiting for a late bus.
With the exception of the lowest revs, the turbocharged 2.0-liter flat-four swiftly gains boost while the exhaust note shifts from flat-brim-cap bass to a more suitable yowl.
We clocked a 4.3-second run to 60 mph with good footwork and one of our favorite six-speed manuals underhand, precisely the same as in 2017, and four-tenths of a second faster than a 2.0-liter Toyota Supra.
If you keep your foot in it, the T will complete the quarter-mile in 12.9 seconds at 109 mph, 0.1 seconds faster than the 2017 Boxster and 0.4 seconds faster than the Supra.
The Boxster T employs the brakes from the basic model, which is not a reason for worry. The T comes to a complete stop from 70 mph in 143 feet and from 100 mph in 293.
Not only are these remarkable figures comparable to the 2017 Boxster and the 2.0-liter Supra, but the 100-mph result is a foot faster than what we got with a 2020 Corvette Stingray convertible.
Fuel economy is one area where Porsche’s four-cylinder engines excel. Sports cars aren’t usually pillars of efficiency, but the Boxster T doesn’t mind being frugal.
While the EPA forecasts a highway fuel economy of 26 mpg—1 mpg more than an entry-level manual Boxster—Our own freeway fuel economy test at 75 mph yielded an outstanding 34 mpg.
The fact that the Boxster T is already going is maybe the most annoying aspect of it. The Porsche 718 T was dropped from the roster for the 2024 model year, but there is a workaround that will get you almost there.
Except for the interior enhancements, a standard Boxster can be outfitted with the PASM suspension (although with half the ride-height decrease), torque vectoring, and practically every other Boxster T component.