5.0 Boxster Aftermarket Equipment


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Porsche Boxster (986) FAQ

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5.1 Boxster Tequipment
5.2 Speed Enhancement Equipment
5.3 TechArt Rear Speaker Panel
5.4 Aftermarket Exhaust Systems
5.5 Replacement Instrument Dials
5.6 Performance Chip
5.7 Cup Holders
5.8 Hub Caps
5.9 Car Bras
5.10 The Boxster Rucksack
5.11 The Boomerang
5.12 Superchargers, Turbochargers, and Intercoolers
5.13 AutoPC

5.1 Boxster Tequipment

Click here for a complete list of Tequipment available for the Boxster.

5.2 Speed Enhancement Equipment

The Valentine One is the top rated radar detector. They do not make a remote unit, only a remote display and control unit. More information can be found at http://www.valentineone.com webout.gif (902 bytes).

K40 makes a remote radar/laser unit that will work in the Boxster. It has hidden remote front and rear detectors and a laser diffusing front license plate frame. The warning lights, on/off and volumes controls can be mounted in the center instrument console where the blanks are on the left side below the traction control button. K40 also makes a front plate laser defuser. More information can be found at http://www.k40.com webout.gif (902 bytes).

Car & Driver likes the license plate diffuser, as the plate is a major reflective surface for the bounce back of laser. Of course, it is only a small part of the overall reflective equation. Laser can just bounce off another surface like the headlights. A front "bra" will also help reduce laser reflection. Car & Driver recommends the Valentine with a K40 front plate diffuser the best overall protection.

Some people have also mentioned using a scanner to listen in on police radio traffic to find speed traps. This may or may not be legal in your area. In most areas, it seems that using a scanner in the commission of a crime is against the law. Whether speeding counts is undetermined. Using a scanner is probably not terribly effective, and should be used as a backup to a radar detector if at all. You can get a scanner at your local Radio Shack for $100 on up.

There is a spray-on stuff called Flash Photo Detector Fluid that supposedly will cause your license plate to turn white on photo-radar photographs. It costs $39.95 for a large can or $19.95 for a sample size. It can be ordered at http://on-off.com webout.gif (902 bytes), which sells a complete line of speed enhancement equipment.

Rocky Mountain Radar (a.k.a. Comstrad Industries) sells a radar jammer called the Phazer. By all reports this doesn't work very well, if at all. However, if you are interested the number is 800-399-7863.

You might also want to check out the speedtrap registry at http://www.speedtrap.com webout.gif (902 bytes).

5.3 TechArt Rear Speaker Panel

The TechArt speaker box replaces the zippered storage compartment behind the seats. Basically it is an upholstered box about 4 feet long. The fit is perfect and little installation is required other than the obvious electronics. The box is actually covered with Porsche carpeting and cloth, and the quality and color is perfect. The speaker panel is a factory quality shelf that holds two tweeters and four speakers. You can order it with or without speakers. If you order it blank, you can put in the number and type of speakers as you wish. The blank board with no speakers runs about $595; with speakers about $1,100. The only installation required is running the wires underneath the carpeting to the proper connect points. One owner’s comment: "If audio is important to you and you can afford it, this is a must-have. The difference it makes is HUGE."

The speakers are close enough to the occupants and edge of the deck that when the top is down there is no loss of quality or volume. Putting in and removing the panel for service into the bay area (which is very infrequent) is easier than removing the storage pouch. Velcro or blocks are used the keep the panel tightly in place.

Additional amps and more power will help this configuration.

If you use this panel, you might consider mounting sub-woofers in the door. One owner mounted 6x9 Kickers with custom mountings. This required no cutting or permanent modification to the doors or panels. With each speaker having a dedicated amp, he claimed the base was "basement deep."

Take a look at the TechArt web site for more information: http://www.techart.de webout.gif (902 bytes). Here is a picture of what is included in the panel sound5.jpg (45076 bytes) (click to enlarge).

5.4 Aftermarket Exhaust Systems

There are a number of aftermarket exhaust systems:

  • B&B Triflow. Weighs less than stock and adds 5HP at the wheels. Supposed to be very loud. Stainless. $950. Headers $1400. http://www.bbtriflo.com/porscheboxter.htm webout.gif (902 bytes).
  • Korda. Basically the six chambers are replaced by one. Modified standard exhaust for $1400. Modified exhaust with twin pipes for $1700 Picture at http://www.lvcablemodem.com/vyenielo/pedal.html webout.gif (902 bytes). They have sold 93 for Boxsters, 1100 for 993, and 84 for 996 already. Thirty day money back guarantee. Dyno info at http://grr.xoc.net/boxster/articles/dynotrip.asp webout.gif (902 bytes). http://tech-efx.com/cat.html webout.gif (902 bytes).

    This seems to be the exhaust that people like. One owner's comment:

    Although the Korda has a bit more resonance than I would like in the 2,500-3,000 rpm range, it is much better than the B&B in that range and overall really sounds great--like a Ferrari. It is also claimed to give a performance boost of 13 bhp and 30 ft. lbs. of torque (@4,600 rpm).

    In an actual measurement, a late 1997 Boxster with a standard exhaust, and an early 1998 Boxster with a Korda exhaust were run on a dyno within a few minutes of each other. At the wheel, the 1998 Boxster produced 7 hp difference and 7 ft. lbs. of torque over the 1997 Boxster. It is possible there may have been other factors besides the exhaust to account for the differences between the two vehicles.

  • TechArt. $2400. CEC sells both Remus and TechArt. http://www.techart.de/e7.htm webout.gif (902 bytes) or http://www.cecwheels.com/techart.html webout.gif (902 bytes) .
  • Gemballa. Standard for $750 (with exchange). $1150 with twin pipes. http://gemballa.com webout.gif (902 bytes)
  • Remus. Supposedly manufactures the TechArt one. Remus is an Austrian firm. $1095.http://www.cecwheels.com/remus1.html webout.gif (902 bytes).
  • D&T Performance. Australian firm. http://www.dtperformance.com.au/boxster.htm webout.gif (902 bytes) gives a dyno printout.
  • Partner Motorsport. http://boxster.dyn.ml.org/images/bs_exhaust.jpg webout.gif (902 bytes).
  • Cardesign. A German tuner. Booming sound at 3000rpm. UK 550. http://www.welding-units.co.uk/boxster/ex.htm webout.gif (902 bytes).
  • ZucZ. $850 for the muffler, $1200 for headers. http://www.zucz.com/boxster.htm webout.gif (902 bytes).
  • Turbo Performance Center (the supercharger people). Stainless steel with a single 177 mm tip. The stainless tip fills the hole so you don't need the chrome piece. Mike said it was a louder than stock but not too loud. He said there was no "booming" between 2000 and 3000 rpm. (410)766-5215 and ask for Mike Levitas.

[Thanks to Phillipe Tarbouriech for compiling much of this information.]

5.5 Replacement Instrument Dials

Besides the Tequipment replacement dials, part numbers 986.641.980.06 and 986.641.980.07, you can also order replacement dials from NR Auto. Information can be found at http://www.nrauto.com webout.gif (902 bytes).

Here is what it takes to replace the dials with NR dials:

Very simple, but not for the unsteady of hand. First, start the car and warm it up. Note the exact RPM reading (tachometer needle), as well as the exact fuel level reading. Next, make sure you have the radio code, as you will need it after disconnecting the battery. Disconnect the battery negative terminal (for safety). You will need a set of magnetic torx screwdrivers, a small but good needle nose pliers, and a small, long flat blade screwdriver. First, use the needle nose to gently pull out the black plug to the left of the instrument cluster (phone-mic). Next, carefully remove the torx screw in the hole (deep). Use a flashlight if necessary. Be careful not to drop the screw (this is why you should have magnetic torx drivers). Next, push on the hazard flash button to the right of the cluster. On this switch's right side, there is a slot into which you put a small screwdriver and carefully pry/snap off the switch cover. Next, remove the torx screw next to the switch body cavity. The instrument cluster will now pull up and off the dash. Remove the hazard switch attachment plug, as well as the three other plugs to the cluster. Remove the cluster from the dash and place it on a table to work comfortably. There are two torx screws, one on each side of the cluster back, remove the instrument dial subassembly from the dash cluster. Next, pull of the bottom of the dial assembly, while pushing the small long screwdriver into the top center of the dials assembly to pry off a locking tab. The dial windows will separate from the dial faces. Carefully place the needle removing tool NR sent under the middle of each needle and pry upwards easily. Use small small paper under the pry tool to prevent marring of the old black faces. Note at each needle exactly where it is at rest for reattachment later (calibration). Gently peel off each dial, and replace with new dial. Make sure the dials are oriented properly. Press the needle back on. Check cluster at dash by attaching only the three color plugs (not hazard), and reconnect battery. Start car, and check fuel and tachometer readings as originally noted. If not correct, stop car, disconnect battery, remove cluster, remove needles needing adjustment, and reinstall, check in car again before reinstalling cluster to car. Reverse all other procedures. If ok, reconnect battery, and put in radio code and push the track switch to enter code (radio should be on first). Allow 1 hour for all. Easy for the steady of hand. [Thanks to Barry Santini for this information]

5.6 Performance Chip

Be warned that using a performance chip on your Boxster may void your warranty. There are some performance chips in the works, but as of the moment, we don't have any information on them.

5.7 Cup Holders

Porsche has discontinued distributing cup holders with the Boxster. This is due to the fact that they were poorly designed and continually fell apart. This resulted in the largest set of complaints about the Boxster in the J.D. Powers Initial Quality Survey, and potentially skewed the reliability results. Porsche is supposedly redesigning them and may or may not distribute them to existing owners when they are completed. In the mean time, there are aftermarket cup holders available. One plugs into the cigarette lighter socket and is available from the Brookstone's chain store. It is not particularly well made, but it serves the purpose until Porsche finishes the redesign.

5.8 Hub Caps

You can replace the standard hub caps of the Boxster wheels with different style hub caps, including colored Porsche crests. Check the Tequipment list for available hub caps. Painted crest hub caps were available as a factory option at one point as option X89. See also how to clean the caps in Car Care. When the colored crest hub caps spin, they form a blurred gold circle in the middle of the wheel that you may find appealing.

5.9 Car Bras

Car bras protect the front of their Boxster to prevent damage to the paint from gravel, stones and the like that may be kicked up from other vehicles.

Conventional Bras

Conventional bras are temporarily attached to the front of the vehicle and are made of vinyl or leather. The Porsche vinyl Tequipment bra for the Boxster is considered to be a good product. Car bras may mar or scratch the paint underneath where they are mounted and many that feel that they are unattractive. It is important not to let water get under the bra and stay there as it can cause the paint to fog, or have other adverse effects on the paint over time.

Permanent Clear Bras

3M OEMs a product called Scotchcal™ Paint Protection film. This film can be affixed to the front of your car. There are two companies that manufacture kits for the Boxster made from this product: Invinci-Shield and StonGard.

There are at least two clear cover alternatives (there may be more, but these are the ones we have heard of) for the Boxster. One is from Invinca-Shield, Inc. out of Florida and one is from StonGard out of Washington State.

Invinca-Shield

Invinca-Shield is a non-yellowing invisible protection film with UV inhibitors and a clear-coat finish that eliminates paint damage from flying insect excretions and acids, and from stone chips. A permanent installation that can be removed without damage to the vehicle, Invinca-Shield does not require the drilling of holes for mechanical attachment. Invinca-Shield virtually eliminates the potential for corrosion and paint abrasions.

Invinca-Shield is applied to the "Impact Areas"--such as fronts of vehicles, door edges, top of rear bumpers, truck bedrails, cap tops, and rocker panels. It protects hoods, painted bumpers, door edges, valances, mirrors, and more while still allowing color brilliance and vehicle design to shine through! Invinca-Shield offers a Limited 5-Year Warranty against peeling, yellowing, cracking and shrinkage The warranty also covers up to $1,000 of repair protection should damage occur in a "protected area."

They have two kits available. The standard kit and the deluxe kit. The standard kit is 12 pieces and runs $225.00. The deluxe kit is 23 pieces and runs $575.00. The difference in the standard and deluxe kit is that the standard covers only above the bumper line whereas the deluxe kit covers above and below. This wpeB.jpg (48875 bytes) (click to enlarge) diagram shows what is covered by each kit.

More information can be obtained from the Invinca-Shield web site at http://www.invinca-shield.com webout.gif (902 bytes).

StonGard

StonGard protects your cars' finish against the chips, nicks and scratches that can take a toll on its beautiful finish and it's value. StonGard is an incredibly tough, clear urethane film that's pre-cut to fit your car perfectly.

StonGard has two kits available. The partial kit and the full kit. The partial kit is 15 pieces and runs $257.95. The full kit is 16 pieces and runs $404.95. The difference in the partial and full kit is that the partial covers only above the bumper line and the full kit covers above and below (one piece). This 6413.jpg (70707 bytes) (click to enlarge) diagram shows what is covered by each kit.

More information can be obtained from the StonGard web site at http://www.stongard.com webout.gif (902 bytes).

5.10 The Boxster Rucksack

The Boxster Rucksack, also known as the Boxster Daypack, is a custom backpack that goes between the seats and straps to the roll bar. It was originally offered as an option with the Boxster, but it has been discontinued in the U.S. It is listed in the Tequipment list of options, as part number WAP.035.019, but is no longer available in North America. However, Diane at the 356 Registry has a contact in England, where they are still available. She can get the rucksack for $160. It will be shipped directly to you from England. You will be billed the cost of the rucksack by the company in England and the rest is her surcharge (profit). This will appear as two separate charges on your credit card. So you can still get one, but at a premium, and it takes three to four weeks to arrive. The 356 Registry web site is http://www.356registry.org webout.gif (902 bytes).

5.11 The Boomerang

The Boomerang is offered by Tech-EFX and mounts under the front bumper of the Boxster and protects nose panel from parking damage and radiators and front condensers from highway damage. It is made of polished 304 stainless steel with all stainless hardware. A picture of the product and ordering information can be seen on the Tech-EFX web site at http://www.tech-efx.com webout.gif (902 bytes).

It requires a simple 45 minute installation. The retail (quantity one) price is $322.95.

One owner comments:

I've had the Boomerang on my Boxster for 14 months. It's saved my front end twice. Avoiding an expensive paint job and down time, I simply had the steel bar removed, repolished, and reinstalled. Perfect! No way would I want to drive my Boxster without it. It's great for Boxster owners who wish to avoid scrapes and tears under their front bumper.

5.12 Superchargers, Turbochargers, and Intercoolers

A turbo or supercharger is basically a big air pump or compressor that jams more air into the motor. By jamming more air into the motor, you can inject more fuel, thus creating more horsepower for the same displacement. Now, when you compress air, or any other gas, it gets hot. Hot air is not as good for your engine because it is less dense than cold air, and cannot produce as much power. So what to do? Well, you can add an intercooler into the picture. Basically you are adding a heat exchanger in between the supercharger and the engine. What this does is radiate the heat from the compressed air out to the atmosphere, thus cooling the intake charge and making it more dense, and therefore making more power. An added benefit of the cooler charge is that it is less likely to pre-detonate, or ignite prematurely (i.e. before the spark fires) Detonation is really, really bad - it can blow a hole through your piston, head, block and you want to avoid it at all costs. But, the 76hp does not come just from the intercooler. Remember, you are lowering the intake charge temperature. Therefore you can compress more air and have it the same temperature as before, at the lower boost level with no intercooler. This is where you get the extra 76hp from. You change the pulley on the supercharger to make it spin faster, raising boost from 4.5psi to 7.5psi in the TPC case. In short, an intercooler on a normally aspirated engine will only hinder performance, because intake air is already at ambient temperature, and also you are adding a restriction to the intake flow that sucks power from the motor. Typical intercoolers experience about a 1.5psi pressure drop across them. [Thanks to Rob for this information]

One performance enhancement currently available for the Boxster is a Supercharger produced by Turbo Performance Center (TPC) of Glen Burnie Maryland. The kit was designed by Mike Levitas of TPC utilizing a Model 62 Eaton Supercharger delivering a boost of 4.5 psi. The Eaton charger is the same one used in the Mercedes SLK with the shaft modified for the Boxster application. The plumbing for the charger was designed on a Computer Assisted Design system. After the design was complete the computer disk were given to the fabricator who used a CNC controlled fabrication process on the 6061 grade aluminum piping system. This insures that all of the kits are the same and are truly a bolt on process. The supercharger has a bypass valve that causes the charge to bleed of when cruising allowing the charger to free wheel using only 1/3 horsepower. Crack the throttle and the charger is instantly available.

The throttle bypass system on the TPC charger is a vacuum type and is extremely fast. The TPC kit takes care of the additional by adding a Bosch injector in the throttle body. The additional fuel is timed by a secondary injector driver that mounts adjacent to the factory Bosch engine controller. It is not necessary to reprogram the Bosch Motronic engine management system when adding the TPC kit. The Eaton charger and all of the plumbing fit underneath the car and are not lower than existing engine parts. The rear trunk is not encroached upon. TPC claims increases in horsepower and torque of approximately 50% (300hp and 280ft/lbs.). The cost of the kit is $4995.00. Installation takes 8 to 10 hours and should cost under $1000.00. TPC has a spring kit for the Boxster produced by H&R. The cost for the spring kit is $399.00. The spring kit and low profile tire are recommended to handle the additional power the supercharger produces.

Mike Levitas and TPC will be producing an inter cooler addition for this kit which should be available in the fall of 1998 that is said to increase the horsepower and torque an additional 25%.

Turbo Performance Center/7423 Ritchie Highway/Glen Burnie, Maryland 21061/Phone 410-766-5215/Fax 410-766-5138

[Thanks to Cecil Thorp email.gif (884 bytes) for this information.]

5.13 AutoPC

As an aftermarket alternative to the Porsche Communications Management option, consider the new AutoPC systems developed by Microsoft and a number of car audio manufacturers. Details can be found at http://www.microsoft.com/windowsce/autopc webout.gif (902 bytes) and an example of a system can be found at http://www.autopc.com webout.gif (902 bytes). The main advantages of the AutoPC systems over the PCM are the price and the fact that they can be programmed.


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