The Zuffenhausen-based company is planning a new model, tentatively dubbed the Porsche 718, that will be smaller, lighter and less expensive than the Boxster.
According to a report in AutoBild, Porsche is planning to bolster its sports car range with a new entry-level model that will undercut the Boxster by using many of its parts. While both the 718 and Boxster will sit atop the same platform, the two cars will be uniquely styled. The 718 will also feature shorter front and rear overhangs.
Overall weight for the 718 is ambitiously targeted to be 1190kg, that’s down around 120kg from today’s entry-level manual Boxster. To get there Porsche is stripping away many luxury features. For instance, the 718 is said to be equipped with thin glass for the side windows, fixed roll over bars behind the driver and passenger, a minimalist interior and pared down seating mechanisms.
The convertible’s canvas top will come with a plastic rear window and no sound insulation. This not only keeps cost and weight down, but allows it to be easily opened and closed with just one hand.
At this stage it’s believed that 718 buyers will be able to choose between two four-cylinder turbocharged boxer engines: a 213kW/400Nm 2.0-litre and a 268kW/470Nm 2.5-litre. At this stage there a no plans to include in the 718’s range the 157kW 1.6-litre four-cylinder engine that Porsche is reportedly working on.
Like the Boxster, the 718’s engines will be mounted behind the passenger compartment and drive the rear wheels. A PDK dual-clutch automated transmission will be offered alongside a manual.
If the report is accurate the 718 will make its debut sometime in 2016, which means that development work on the new car is quite well advanced. Should Porsche decide to go with the 718 name it will provide the new model with a link to the company’s illustrious racing past.
The original Porsche 718 (above) was a race car produced between 1957 and 1962. Since it barely troubled the scales at just 570kg, its mid-mounted 1.5-litre boxer engine provided ample amounts of motivation.