Driven: Porsche Boxster Sports Chassis
A quick blast in new hardcore chassis option for Boxster S
Boxster S to Silverstone too, providing an interesting comparison twixt the high-tech approach with active dampers and the more traditional ‘ramp up the rates and off you go’ Sports Chassis.
As you’ll have seen from a previous blog, getting to the bottom of why passive dampers are considered better for a more focused set-up wasn’t an easy task, this being somewhat contrary to the party line that tech – with a supporting cast of acronyms behind it – is best. Indeed, in some ways this and the basic, no frills (relative) Carrera 2 were the elephants in the room, both proving in their own and very different ways how good Porsches stripped of all the electronic gubbins and tuned with good, old-fashioned engineering know-how can be.
Harder, faster ... better?
The Sports Chassis will be available from later in the year and although the hardware is apparently more straightforward than the PASM option we were told the price will be more or less comparable with the active dampers, which add £971 to the price of a Boxster S. The implication seemed to be that the Sports Chassis would only be available on the S too.
And, guess what, that’s exactly what it does. True, we didn’t get a chance to try it on the road so – unfortunately - can’t comment right now on whether it’s a step too far for that default bumpy B-road. But on the smooth surfaces of Silverstone’s National loop the additional front-end is really noticeable, in both slower, tighter corners like the Luffield complex and higher-speed ones like Copse. An ambitious turn-in to either in the standard S induces obvious understeer that you just have to offset with a slower entry or sit out until you can pour in more power.
Credit to Porsche for offering us the choice though. And if you want your Boxster as an all-rounder then PASM makes a lot of sense. If, however, you want something a bit sharper and intuitive, well, you can have that instead. Horses for courses and all that.
|Front axle height||-10mm||-20mm|
|Rear axle height||-10mm||-20mm|
|Spring rate front||+12%||+20%|
|Spring rate rear||+15%||+25%|
|Anti-roll bar front||+12%||+22%|
|Anti-roll bar rear||+10%||+46%|
|Dampers||PASM||'Sport Set-up' (passive)|
Note: all values compared with standard, non-PASM suspension