It is often said that there are no bad cars anymore. While some may debate that point, there are few that a performance enthusiast can simply get into and drive, rewarded with a car that does exactly what is wanted, exactly how it is wanted. Every Porsche available as this is written makes that list, from the GT2 right down to the Boxster.

The Boxster and Boxster S were revised for 2003; many changes were similar for both models. New Variocam technology yields 8 hp more while improving fuel economy. Front and rear fascias were restyled with input from the wind tunnel geeks, and the exhaust tips were updated as well. A new top includes a glass window, finally matching the flyweight Asian roadsters. Standard 17-in. wheels are nearly 0.5-lb lighter, while the optional 18-in. wheels are nearly 24-lb lighter (the total for all four) than the old designs, enhancing acceleration, ride and handling. The rear anti-roll bar was stiffened slightly.

Porsche's new Communication Management systems connect tuner, CD player, navigation system and trip computer through a digital databus. The fold-down-face head unit has been banished, hopefully forever.

While not new to the extent of some other cars in this group, the Boxster remains the favorite of several staffers. It has received new life through an injection of technology, benefitting from advancements made since its introduction six years ago.

Eight Great Contenders for Car of the Year
Mercedes-Benz E500
Porsche Boxster S
BMW Z4 Roadster
Saab 9-3
Jaguar XJR
New Beetle Convertible
Volvo S60 R
Audi RS6
2003 european car Grand Prix Winner
Grand Prix 2003 Home

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