Tag Archives: Buyer’s Guide

5 Best Starter Porsches – Part 3 The Porsche Boxster (986)

By   December 14, 2016

Porsche Boxster

Porsche Boxster (986)

If you have not owned a Porsche and are thinking that it is time to get into one, what should your first Porsche be? Sure it would be easy to just saw the latest 911, 718 Boxster or 718 Cayman and call it done. However, if you have the cash for a new Porsche then the cars in this series are not for you (with a few exceptions). These are cars for someone that is wanting to get their first Porsche, but they don’t want it to break the bank. All of them can be had for under $30,000 with some being as low as about $5,000 for a running car in decent condition.

With a lower budget a buyer is likely to want a car that they can do the routine maintenance themselves. It also needs to be fairly dependable as it may double as a commuter car as well as a weekend driver. Below is the list of Porsche’s that we think best fit this criteria. Over the next few articles we will cover each model, so make sure to subscribe to our updates now (scroll down to get our daily updates in your email box for free).

  1. Porsche 944
  2. Porsche 914
  3. Porsche Boxster (986)
  4. Porsche 911 (996)
  5. Porsche 928

Today we cover the third car on our list which is the Porsche Boxster 986.

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5 Best Starter Porsches – Part 2 The Porsche 914

By   December 13, 2016

Porsche 914-6

Porsche 914

If you have not owned a Porsche and are thinking that it is time to get into one, what should your first Porsche be? Sure it would be easy to just saw the latest 911, 718 Boxster or 718 Cayman and call it done. However, if you have the cash for a new Porsche then the cars in this series are not for you (with a few exceptions). These are cars for someone that is wanting to get their first Porsche, but they don’t want it to break the bank. All of them can be had for under $30,000 with some being as low as about $5,000 for a running car in good condition.

With a lower budget a buyer is likely to want a car that they can do the routine maintenance themselves. It also needs to be fairly dependable as it may double as a commuter car as well as a weekend driver. Below is the list of Porsche’s that we think best fit this criteria. Over the next few articles we will cover each model, so make sure to subscribe to our updates now (scroll down to get our daily updates in your email box for free).

  1. Porsche 944
  2. Porsche 914
  3. Porsche Boxster (986)
  4. Porsche 911 (996)
  5. Porsche 928

Today we cover the second car on our list which is the Porsche 914.

Continue reading »

5 Best Starter Porsches – Part 1 The Porsche 944

By   December 12, 2016

Porsche 944 S2

Porsche 944

If you have not owned a Porsche and are thinking that it is time to get into one, what should your first Porsche be? Sure it would be easy to just saw the latest 911, 718 Boxster or 718 Cayman and call it done. However, if you have the cash for a new Porsche then the cars in this series are not for you. These are cars for someone that is wanting to get their first Porsche, but they don’t want it to break the bank. All of them can be had for under $30,000 with some being as low as about $5,000 for a running car in good condition.

With a lower budget a buyer is likely to want a car that they can do routine maintenance themselves. It also needs to be fairly dependable as it may double as a commuter car and a weekend driver. Below is the list of Porsche’s that we think best fit this criteria. Over the next few articles we will cover each model, so make sure to subscribe to our updates now (scroll down to get our daily updates in your email box for free).

  1. Porsche 944
  2. Porsche 914
  3. Porsche Boxster (986)
  4. Porsche 911 (996)
  5. Porsche 928

The first car on our list is the Porsche 944.

Continue reading »

2006-2012 Porsche Cayman (987) Buyers Guide

By   September 25, 2014

Porsche Cayman (987

Porsche Cayman (987)

When the Porsche Cayman (987) was first introduced it was made to fill the sports car model gap between the Boxster and the 911. Many think of the Cayman as a hardtop Boxster partly because it has the same engine layout. The fact that the Cayman’s shortened internal code of 987 was also the same as the second generation Boxster also led to this thought.

It is interesting to note, however that the 987 Cayman actually shares parts with both the Boxster and 911 with many 911 parts being found under the skin. The Cayman cost a bit more than the Boxster and has a little more power. From a power and price stand point it fit the model gap perfectly.

The 987 Cayman was the first generation of the hardtop sports car and Porsche has since introduced the 981 generation Cayman which was introduced in 2013 as a 2014 model. The two generations can be easily told apart by the air intakes (the newer car has larger more pronounced intakes that contour from the door) and the rear spoiler (the 2nd gen. car has a ducktail style spoiler with the taillights molded to integrate with the spoiler).

But what is it like to drive? The Cayman feels a little more hard edge as opposed to the Boxster, but thanks to the mid-engine layout it handles more neutrally than a 911. While some are not fans of the 987 styling, it has Classic Porsche lines and is less feminine than its roadster sibling.

The Cayman is a true sports car. It features just two seats with the engine in the middle and has good power in a relatively light package. The standard Cayman is a good driving car, but if you can find a good Cayman S the added power and suspension upgrades are worth the slight price increase.

On the used market a 987 Cayman is a pretty good value. While they will likely loose value for a while before leveling off, the brunt of depreciation has already happened.

As with any Porsche buy the best maintained model that you can afford. This will save you quite a bit in future repair bills. Overall the 987 Caymans are well built cars, but no car is without its issue.

As with the 986, 996 and 997, the 987 models biggest concern is the possibility if Intermediate Shaft Bearing (IMS) failure. If IMS failure is experience it usually requires replacing the entire engine. Fortunately, a redesigned IMS bearing is available and if you are looking to purchase a Cayman with the replacement already done it may be worth a small premium. While the amount of 987s still on the road that will have the issue is relatively low, it is always best to go in with your eyes open and you can use it as a negotiating point.

Below is the price range that our research found. Please remember that a car in need of a full restoration may be worth less and a pristine car may be worth more. As with any Porsche purchase a pre-purchase inspection is a must.

2006-2012 Porsche Cayman $17,000 – $35,000
2006-2012 Porsche Cayman S $25,000 – $45,000

Picture Source: Andix810

Porsche 911 (996) Buyers Guide – Current Market Value

By   September 8, 2014

Porsche 911 (996)

Porsche 911 (996) a Bargain 911

When the Porsche 911 (996) made its debut it was a major change for the rear engined sports car. It was the first 911 generation that was water cooled.

This along with the shape of the headlights (which in 996.1 looked the same as those on the 986 Boxster) did not find favor with many 911 purists. Incidentally, those headlights are also how you can easily tell a 996.1 and 996.2 apart as the 996.1 has headlights with an egg look and the 996.2 look like the above picture.

That these are not the most popular generation is good news for those looking to purchase an affordable modern 911. With the lowest amount of power available being 296 horsepower, these cars are a performance bargain.

The 996 provides good performance and handling in a reliable package. The build quality is very good, although the interior is a bit plasticky compared to newer 911s.

996s are reliable, but they do have a few potential issues. The biggest of which is the Intermediate Shaft Bearing (IMS) Failure. This problem usually presents itself before 50,000 miles and it normally results in catastrophic engine failure. Fortunately, the bearings can be replaces with improved parts that are much less likely to fail. Such failures are estimated to affect between 5%-10% of cars.

Because of this it is smarter to buy a car with the improved IMS Bearing already installed. Such cars are worth a bit more for the added peace of mind.

Another issue can be the Rear Main Seal (RMS). In some cars they can leak oil and repairing the seal can be costly. To help avoid the issue in a potential car make sure to check for signs of oil leaks both before and after you test drive it.

As with any Porsche purchase a pre-purchase inspection is a must. It can save you plenty of money in future repairs. We also recommend buying the best Porsche 996 that you can afford and documentation of maintenance is always a plus.

The 996 generation 911 may be a very affordable car to buy on the used market, but make sure you can afford to maintain the car properly. If you start with a good car and keep it maintained it can last you for many years of enjoyment.

In our research of the 996 we found the below to be the current market value range. Earlier cars tend to cost less and newer cars command a bit of a premium. These prices do not include the higher performance variants (Turbo, GT2 and GT3) as they will be covered in separate posts.

Remember that this is just a guide and that cars could be worth more or less depending on if it is a top show quality machine or it needs a compete restoration.

1999-2001 Porsche 911 (996.1) $15,000-$32,000
2002-2004 Porsche 911 (996.2) $18,000-$35,000