Loud was the hoo-ha in 2016 over the adoption of a four-cylinder turbocharged engine in place of the flat six in the then new 718 Cayman and Boxster. Feelings were so strong that the debate still rages, despite the 2019 reintroduction of a naturally aspirated 4.0-litre six-cylinder unit to two additional models, the GTS and the GT4.
If you are into your sports cars, such things as the number of cylinders in the engine and whether or not that engine is turbocharged are of paramount importance, so it wasn’t surprising that enthusiasts the world over wept when this car was introduced.
Nevertheless, you don’t just write off four-cylinder 718s. They’re much faster than the older Cayman, for one thing, and ruddy good to drive for another, having been comprehensively refreshed all over, with quicker steering, even more trick suspension and updated styling.
It isn’t short of power, either. The 2.0-litre is good for 295bhp and the 2.5-litre S version has 345bhp. Both will rocket to a licence-losing speed fairly quickly and, despite the turbocharging, it’s rarely caught out when it comes to puff. However, enthusiasts who bemoan the lack of aural pleasure are right to do so. It’s not nearly as pleasant as the old engine’s tone and it’s not very sports car-like.
Best to concentrate instead on the 718’s many pluses, such as its wonderful balance and eager handling. This car is brilliantly drivable at any speed, with endless grip and remarkable poise.
Its well-assembled cabin provides a comfortable and satisfying environment with a great driving position. All the switchgear has a solid, high-quality feel and the buttons operate in a slick fashion.
Buying a used example can get you some decent savings, too, despite Porsche’s rock-solid residual values.