Porsche Cayman And Boxster Will be Renamed To 718 Cayman And 718 Boxster
The Porsche Boxster and Cayman are set to receive significant changes beginning with the 2016 models of both mid-engine sports cars. For starters, both the Boxster and the Cayman are scheduled to get new names. Taking a page from its traditional style of naming its vehicles, the Boxster and the Cayman will be renamed the 718 Boxster and the 718 Cayman.
Porsche made the announcement in a press release, even though it didn’t exactly explain the reason behind the decision to add the historically significant “718” name to both mid-engined sports cars. Porsche purists know that the 718 designation is a reference to the ground-breaking, open-top race car that Porsche built from 1957 to 1962. The original 718 was a two-seater, 1.5-liter sports car that was adapted to compete in a number of different formulas during its years with Porsche, most notably in 1961 when it competed in Formula One and propelled driver Dan Gurney to a fourth place finish in the driver’s championship.
Neither the Boxster nor the Cayman have any historical ties to the original 718 so it’s interesting to hear why Porsche decided to dust off the name and give it to both models. Whatever rationale Porsche has, it does look more and more certain that we’re going to see the legendary 718 name back into the fold. Younger fans of Porsche may not be familiar with it, but rest assured, the historical significance attached to the name speaks to the rich and oftentimes successful history Porsche has in motorsports.
Both the 718 Boxster and the 718 Cayman will be next-generation models when they make their debuts in 2016. Details have been scant at this point, but Porsche did say that the two models will be more similar than they have been in the past. That’s interesting considering both are already nearly identical to each other except for a few notable exceptions.
Continue reading for the full story.
Why it matters
The Porsche Boxster and Cayman have already established themselves in the sports car scene so I’m not sure how a name change is going to help drive up interest in the model. It’s also curious considering that Porsche’s target market for both cars are young buyers or the same type of people of who may not even be familiar with the 718’s historical significance to Porsche.
It is a curious decision to say the least but one that I’m sure Porsche deliberated on for some time before making the announcement. Those who do know the 718’s place in the annals of Porsche lore will appreciate the name making a comeback. After all, the 718 isn’t just known for its racing history. It’s also the model that effectively became the successor to the Porsche 550, arguably the most iconic Porsche model in history next to the 911.
That’s the kind of history both the Boxster and the Cayman will begin to carry on their respective shoulders when they receive the 718 designation in time for the arrivals of both next-generation models next year. Porsche seems to think that both models are capable of making the name proud and for its part, and the German automaker is doing what it can to prepare both mid-engine sports cars for this task.
Only time will tell if the 718 Boxster and the 718 Cayman will be able to justify the name they’ve been given. Porsche has said that the two models will be given the same 2.0-liter turbocharged flat-four engines with outputs that could reach 240 horsepower for the base models and as much as 370 ponies for the GTS variants. That base output would actually be lower than the 275 ponies powering the current Boxster and Cayman, although that’s likely tied into the smaller engine that Porsche will use on the next-gem models. The base engine for the current Boxster and Cayman models is a 2.7-liter flat-six engines.
Just as important is Porsche confirming that the 718 Boxster will have a higher price tag than its Cayman counterpart, a reversal from the pricing of the current models which has the Cayman being the slightly more expensive model than the Boxster.
Read our full review on the Porsche 718 here.