Test drove a Spyder last weekend
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    Test drove a Spyder last weekend

    Hi All

    I'm normally a lurker on this forum, but I am in a bit of a quandary so I thought I'd seek some expert opinions. I'm currently driving my 5th Boxster in 15 years, the current one with PDK. I've had the car for nearly 3 years now so I have started thinking about whether to change the car or not. I had intended to keep this car for 3 - 4 years then upgrade to a Boxster S or maybe a used 911, however last weekend I foolishly went for a test drive in a Spyder at my local dealer and I am totally smitten - the noise, the power and the handling were absolutely fantastic, yet still easy to drive.

    The car has 3.5k on the clock and is over my normal budget, it has a lot of kit on it including climate and BOSE which are a must given my use of the car as a daily driver. I commute about 25 miles a day and I have been putting about 8k miles a year on the current car. Here in the UK I'm going to spend more than 50% of the time with the hood up.

    I'm going for another test drive next week, this time I'm going to do a back to back comparison with a new 718S, but I was wondering if anyone had any comments, especially any Spyder owners in the UK.

    Is it practical to use a Spyder like this?
    Is the reduced visibility a problem with the hood up?
    What's it like living with the manual roof?
    Given that the car is 20mm lower, is it constantly scraping speed bumps (they are multiplying over here at a ridiculous rate)

    Thanks
    Last edited by Skipper K; 02-02-2017 at 11:21 AM. Reason: Spelling mistake
    981 Boxster|Amaranth Red|PDK|Black Cayman S Wheels|BOSE|CDR+

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    Re: Test drove a Spyder last weekend

    I can provide some insight on using a car with a low front spoiler as a daily driver. Two weeks ago, I replaced for the fourth time since 2013 the lower lip on my GTS with Aerokit Cup. The part in primer is just under $600 Canadian, and taking it to the body shop to get it sprayed in Basalt Black costs another $500 or so. The last two, I've done 4-5 coats of black PlastiDip, which matches nearly perfectly with the unpainted side skirts and rear valance (and looks better than shiny black paint, IMO). The reality is that no matter how careful you are, a car with a low front end that gets used every day is going to take some damage.
    2018 Boxster S, 6-speed, GT Silver (in the ED queue)
    2012 Cayman S, PDK, Platinum Silver/Black
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    Re: Test drove a Spyder last weekend

    I wish my line of work permitted me to use my spyder everyday, I would be the happiest guy on the planet. I sometimes get up at 5am on a Sunday morning and just drive this is infectious, go for you won't regret it. Try and find one with reversing camera it does help, I am Shropshire based uk

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    Re: Test drove a Spyder last weekend

    The car I'm looking at has got a reversing camera. I've got reversing sensors on my current car and they are a definite help. Thanks for the advice.
    981 Boxster|Amaranth Red|PDK|Black Cayman S Wheels|BOSE|CDR+

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    Re: Test drove a Spyder last weekend

    Brilliant car, shouldn't lose too much on it, mines for high days and hols so roll on spring. You won't regret it.

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    Had mine since about June, I think. I've put about 2400 miles on it. I'm smitten.
    No other car I've driven nor have been driven in has so consistently made me laugh out loud or giggle like a child. Between the styling and exhaust note, it's simply obnoxious- which adds to the giggle factor :-) I'm somewhat proud that an anonymous neighbor had called in the police one Saturday morning, reporting a "noisy white sports car"- I was long gone, but my buddy across the street was interviewed- I can just see him doing a flawless impression of Sergeant Schultz: "I know nothing, nothing!")
    My car is in Chicago- where what we euphemistically refer to as roads are more akin to dirt trails. The only damage I've incurred to the front lip was inflicted by a careless body shop I'd left it with to replace the rear license plate frame. I think you mentioned the U.K.- roads there are vastly better than the US. Be careful of curbs and speed bumps and you won't have a problem.
    The lip is a flexible and unpainted mat black consumable trim piece. Suncoasticon sells them for about $250. Installation is DIY.

    I think this is the most underrated (which is to say underhyped) automobile in current/recent Porsche production. IMHO, If the next Spyder employs the new turbo four, or some hybrid/electric drive train (I'm not buying that Porsche would revert to the NA 6 as has been claimed), the 2016 model becomes a bonnafied classic. In my mind, it is one already.
    Last edited by arobot; 02-02-2017 at 08:53 PM.

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    Re: Test drove a Spyder last weekend

    Don't worry about low front end or top or down. You know when you drove it the Spyder has a magic to it you won't find in other cars. If you have the chance buy it. Will come a time when you will wish you had and realize rarity of the chance to do so.


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    Re: Test drove a Spyder last weekend

    Although my car is not quite a daily driver I get out in it a lot, too much fun not too!

    As for the lower front lip, agreed they are low and can take a beating, after a year now I have learned to be very careful approaching speed bumps and ramps, the biggest mistake is to brake just ahead of them, you need to brake a few meters back and roll over them slowly because a fast transition can bring the lip down hard on the back side too.

    I have become a good judge of height in the past year and if the obstruction looks questionable, I just don't go there. Oh yes and good that you have the back up camera, I am adding it and a front one to the car to keep me away from damage!
    2016 BGTS delivered Sept 8th! Previous rides:
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    Re: Test drove a Spyder last weekend

    Go get the Spyder. You honestly won't regret it as a machine. But you might regret it financially especially since you are indicating it's above your budget. Only you can be the judge of how far you can stretch yourself. But I for one love my Spyder to death. I think it's amazing. I think it's under hyped and people I know who have owned multiple Porsches in the past have no idea what the Spyder even was when they saw it in person. If you are a bit of a nutter like me then you would find yourself keeping up and even outstripping GT3s on a track. It drives as well as it looks. I personally think this is the best car Porsche makes. I think they deliberately tried to castrate it by reducing power and adding tall gearing and putting skinnier and less grippy tires on it. But there are aftermarket remedies for all of the above

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    Re: Test drove a Spyder last weekend

    First of all, thanks for all the replies, I can tell that everyone really loves their Spyders. I went for another test drive in the Spyder today, along with a 718S. Suffice to say I won't be getting a new 718 no matter what I do! Really love the Spyder, so I think I am going to go for it, I just have one more question, which is opening the rear boot (trunk in the US); it seems that in order to open it you have to release the roof, is this correct? Not a huge problem as I generally use the front boot/trunk, but I was interested if there was some secret trick we couldn't work out, 3 of us were trying.
    Last edited by Skipper K; 02-07-2017 at 12:41 PM.
    981 Boxster|Amaranth Red|PDK|Black Cayman S Wheels|BOSE|CDR+

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    Re: Test drove a Spyder last weekend

    Yep on the rear roof.

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    Re: Test drove a Spyder last weekend

    There is no question that Spyder is a wonderful machine. But manual roof would be a huge deterrent for me. I open/close the roof at least twice a day, because you never know when it's going to rain. And if it wasn't electric - I would probably open it less. And be less happy. I assume people who use Spyder as daily driver - usually live in those parts of the world where you can just keep the roof down most of the time, like California...
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    Re: Test drove a Spyder last weekend

    The roof does not bother me in the least. But yeah I live in sunny Atlanta. I don't drive top down too much because it gets to frigging hot. Spring time there's a lot of pollen so I get the sneezes lol. So the roof stays up. Only few days in summer is the roof down and in the fall I do have it top down but then it gets cold at times. So point is I don't mind in the least doing manual labor for the top. Yeah its not as cool as motorized tops for sure but I don't mind. The wife on the other hand thinks its quite lame lol.

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    I sold a '13 Boxster S and bought the Spyder.
    I don't miss the auto roof at all.
    I actually enjoy the ritual, which is in fact pretty simple- up/down in about 30 sec.
    The cool rear deck lid is worth it!
    Seems you're looking for reasons to not buy one.

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    Re: Test drove a Spyder last weekend

    I am just doing 'due diligence' as it's going to be the most I have ever spent on a car. I put the roof up and down several times during the two test drives so I have realised it's pretty easy (certainly easier than putting the tonneau cover on my MX-5 many years ago).

    Anyway the the second test drive convinced me and I have now put a deposit on the car, hoping to pick it up in the next two weeks. Really excited about it.

    Thanks eveyone one for your comments.

    Test drove a Spyder last weekend-img_0559-jpg
    981 Boxster|Amaranth Red|PDK|Black Cayman S Wheels|BOSE|CDR+

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    Buy it. Don't wreck it, and if in a year or two or ten you decide the money was misspent, your worst case is you exit at what you paid. But I'd bet you'd turn a profit. Either case makes this a very very cheap car to own.

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    Re: Test drove a Spyder last weekend

    What about a GTS? I absolutely love mine!


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    Re: Test drove a Spyder last weekend

    3.8 vs. 3.4 engine? No disrespect, I know both engines well, but the 3.8 is in its own class.

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    Re: Test drove a Spyder last weekend

    Congratulations Skipper K. You've got yourself a cracking car !

    I'm based in Devon and was very fortunate to bag a new Spyder in Dec15.
    Like you it was the most I've ever paid for a car, but it certainly is a very special thing.

    In my first year Ive racked up just over 8k.
    I wanted to get it run in quickly so that accounted for the first 2k, then did a big Euro tour which was nearly another 3k.

    I came from an 987 BS, but kept this for last season to use as my commute to work, nipping to Tesco toy etc...
    Being an 05 car, it left me not worrying about the odd scratch / stone chip.

    I recently sold the BS, but plan on replacing it with a 987 BS gen 2 car to take over daily duties in the spring (I drive an A6 as my winter warrior !!).

    My views on the Spyder -

    Firstly I agree that these cars are likely to be the last of the 6cyl NA breed, which makes it even more special.
    The prices will definitely hold up, a far better place to invest your cash than a standard car.

    For me personally, I'm not sure I would want one as my only car. I love having the roof off, and although putting the top up and down is a 30 sec ish job, it is a bind when you just want a blast down the pub etc.. and put the top up when you get there. On saying that, it does add to the sense of occasion doing it manually.
    I have the folding buckets in mine, which look great and are comfortable when you've settled into them, but again not easy for jumping in and out off. I see you have the sports seats, which will be far easier to live with as a daily IMO.
    I do scrape the front lip on occasions, but as mentioned this protective strip can easily be replaced.
    visability with the roof up, not great, but that's why we have mirrors I guess !

    but... none of the above is a major issue when it comes to owning such a special car as the 981 Spyder.
    It's a car that every time I sit in it, it feels special, and that's before I start the engine and engage SP mode.
    The sound of this thing as a standard production car is just bonkers, I have no idea how it's legal, but I absolutely love it !

    I find it so much more refined than the 987, but with that engine, gear change and exhaust.
    For me it's the prefect car for long range touring. Eating the motorway miles, but then ready for a track, autobahn or mountain pass.
    We all buy and own cars to perform different roles for us, but I'm sure you won't regret having this car in your garage !!

    enjoy the ride.

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    Test drove a Spyder last weekend

    Skipper K hope you are enjoying the Spyder. At moment have 981 boxster and thinking of making the leap. How are you finding living with the car? Does it live up to expectations?

    I also live in U.K. and wondered what a reasonable premium over list is for the cars. Have enquired on one car which has very few options but dealer asking for 26% over list! Sure they will come down some but interested in any opinions on what a 'reasonable' premium is.

    Only risk I see on depreciation would be a future 718 Spyder 'IF' 6 cylinder NA.


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    Last edited by tom.b.craig; 04-22-2017 at 02:19 AM.

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