The new Porsche Boxster is so good it makes you question why anyone would every buy a 911
Faced with the near-impossible task of improving on the outgoing Boxster, Porsche’s engineers have come up trumps and produced the most desirable, capable and enjoyable roadster that money can buy.
The new Boxster reeks of quality – from the tightness of the shut lines in its bodywork to the precise operation of its fabric hood. While others have moved on to folding hard-tops, Porsche has stuck with traditional fabric – and it reaps the rewards.
The soft-top doesn’t compromise the car’s slick shape, and the multi-layer design provides superb insulation from noise and draughts. Best of all, it takes just a few moments to fold away.
Dropping the hood allows you to better savour the sound of the charismatic flat-six, yet you won’t be blown around – so you can focus on the driving experience, which is brilliant.
The basic 2.7-litre model and potent 3.4-litre S both have bags of performance, while the talented chassis, accurate steering and progressive brakes only add to the package.
In many ways, Porsche has done itself few favours with the new Boxster. It’s so good that you question the need to buy the pricier flagship 911. But what’s bad news for Porsche is great news for enthusiasts.
OUR CHOICE: Boxster (£38,237) Less is sometimes more, and that’s the case with the Boxster. Yes, the 3.4-litre S is faster, but the 2.7-litre version is every bit as sweet – and more affordable.
We love the F-Type for so many reasons – not least the way it looks and sounds. Jaguar has kept its promise to provide a Porsche-rivalling driving experience, but the F-Type is priced to tackle the 911 rather than the more accessible Boxster.
The Mazda MX-5 used to win this trophy with such monotony we once wondered if we should stop handing it out. The current car is as appealing as ever, and hasn’t strayed from the original formula of simple, affordable fun.
- 1Introduction18 class winners, 36 commended cars, 8 Special Awards and the 2013 Auto Express Car of the Year – it's all here
- 2Car of the YearThe most coveted accolade in the world of motoring goes to the SEAT Leon
- 3Best City CarThe Skoda Citigo retains its Best City Car crown thanks to a combination of comfort, low running costs and superb on-road ability
- 4Best SuperminiThe Ford Fiesta wrestles its way back onto the top of the podium after last year's loss to the 208
- 5Best Compact Family CarThe SEAT Leon fights off its fellow VW Group rivals to take the gold medal in one of the most competitive classes around
- 6Best Family CarThe new Mazda 6 sees of all-comers to take family car class honours
- 7Best Estate CarOffering peerless practicality, huge value for money and attractive lines, the Skoda Octavia is the best Estate on the market
- 8Best Five-Seat MPVFord's innovative small MPV pips its big brother – the C-MAX – to the Best Five-seat MPV award
- 9Best MPVFor the third year in a row, the SEAT Alhambra wins the Auto Express Best MPV award
- 10Best CrossoverThe Mazda CX-5 is a talented all-rounder that offers everything you could want from a crossover
- 11Best Compact SUVThe Range Rover Evoque is one of the most striking cars on the road – but it's also more than just a pretty face
- 12Best Large SUVThe talented Santa Fe is one of the best models Hyundai has ever produced
- 13Best Hot HatchThe Ford Fiesta ST is in a class of its own – and better value for money than its key rivals
- 14Best CoupeThe brilliant Porsche Cayman pips its big brother - the 911 – and three-time winner the Peugeot RCZ to the Best Coupe prize
- 15Best Roadster - currently readingThe new Porsche Boxster is so good it makes you question why anyone would every buy a 911
- 16Best ConvertibleWith funky looks, premium quality and low running costs – frivolity has never been so sensible. Or so desirable
- 17Best Pick-upWith decent handling, comfort levels and build quality, the VW Amarok is a cut above its rivals
- 18Best Compact Executive CarThe 3 Series continues its undisputed reign as king of the compact executive class
- 19Best Executive CarBMW 5 Series fends off some impressive German rivals to take the executive class crown
- 20Best Luxury CarAs a 4x4, an SUV and a luxury car, the Range Rover is jack of all trades. But it's a master of all trades, too
- 21Performance Car of the YearThe entertaining GT 86 outguns a host of big-name sports cars to take Performance Car of the Year
- 22Design Award The latest incarnation of the iconic Range Rover is voted by Auto Express readers as the best designed car of 2013
- 23Green AwardThe Vauxhall Ampera's innovative range-extending powertrain wins it our Green Award
- 24Van of the YearOur Van of the Year is hi-tech, practical and the first van in its class to get a five-star crash test rating
- 25Safety AwardThe Volvo V40 is probably the safest car ever made, and a worthy winner of our Safety Award
- 26Driver Power AwardThe Japanese premium brand has reclaimed its Driver Power top spot for the first time in four years
- 27Hall of FameBMW board member inducted into the Auto Express Hall of Fame