These days, we've seen just about every automaker dropping cylinders in an effort to appease tightening fuel economy and emission standards – and Porsche is no exception. Nearly three years after introducing an all-new V6 powerplant under the front hood of its Panamera sedan (launched with a range of V8 engines) comes word that Porsche is working on an all-new turbocharged flat-four boxer to replace the flat-six engines mid-mounted in its Cayman and Boxster models.

Specifics have yet to be learned, but reports say the engine is a derivative of the current 3.8-liter six (shown above) found under the rear decklid of the Carrera S, yet with two fewer cylinders. Fitted with a turbocharger, direct-injection and the automaker's VarioCam Plus, the new all-aluminum 2.5-liter flat-four will likely develop upwards of 350 horsepower and 360 pound-feet of torque. Redline should be about 7,500 rpm. Initial indications say that Porsche will only offer the new engine with its seven-speed PDK dual-clutch automatic, tuned to take advantage of the low-end torque, but a traditional six-speed manual gearbox has not been ruled out. Despite the loss of two cylinders, enthusiasts will likely embrace the new engine as it promises to be lighter, more fuel efficient and more powerful than the 2.7-liter and 3.4-liter sixes in the Cayman/Boxster today.

Even though Porsche has been using Volkswagen Group engines for years (e.g., Cayenne V6, Cayenne Diesel and upcoming Macan), all indications are that the new flat-four will not be shared. Instead, it will be kept in-house for the automaker's sports cars and possible future fitment in an entry-level 911.


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  • 49 Comments
      Brian Rautio
      • 1 Year Ago
      Handling of an even lighter cayman...can you imagine?!
      xyzabomination
      • 1 Year Ago
      Based on the current 3.8L flat 6 in the 911-S, a 2.5L 4 cylinder version should make 400 HP * 0.66 = 265 HP, with no turbo-charger! If that's the case, then the current 265 HP 2.7L flat-6 in the Boxster / Cayman will probably cease production. I think this would be perfect. A 2.5L naturally aspirated flat-4 is the perfect entry level engine for these cars.
        sparrk
        • 1 Year Ago
        @xyzabomination
        Makes sense, the first Boxster had a 2.5l engine. At that time, the base Carrera had a 3.4l engine , just like the current one.
      Lachmund
      • 1 Year Ago
      we know this since how many years?!
      William
      • 1 Year Ago
      Ah...the flat four. Two thumbs up.
      Esher127
      • 1 Year Ago
      If there's going to be an "entry level 911", then it should be called the 912, like it was in the 60's/70's.
        bouljf
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Esher127
        I think if they called it anything but 911 Porsche would have to charge substantially less or sales would be abysmal. There's a "show off" factor to the 911 that won't work if you have to explain your 912 is just as good. Magazine reviews have been saying the Cayman is the enthusiast's choice for years yet they seem to be much less popular.
      KO
      • 1 Year Ago
      Now that Boxster/Cayman have been pretty well established, I dunno that there's a need for a '912'
      thePeterN
      • 1 Year Ago
      The only "cheap" Porsche is ten year old and needs the engine rebuilt. But how sweet it would be to have one in my garage!
      Bernard
      • 1 Year Ago
      I guarantee you that the only way these four banger Porsche's are leaving the dealerships is with $60k on the bill including options for basic yet curiously expensive things like floor mats.
      PiCASSO
      • 1 Year Ago
      Just buy the engine from Subaru... save a little money.
      Dwight Bynum Jr.
      • 1 Year Ago
      Considering the fact that Porsche and Subaru have collaborated in the past (Legacy Blitzen), I wouldn't be surprised if Subaru is helping with the development of this engine. It certainly couldn't hurt.
        Peter Middleton
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Dwight Bynum Jr.
        cause Porsche never made a flat 4 before?
          Dwight Bynum Jr.
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Peter Middleton
          Yeah, because a 40 year old engine argument is relevant here... right?
          Dwight Bynum Jr.
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Peter Middleton
          I love how statement of an absolute FACT gets downvoted by you people. Haha!
        sparrk
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Dwight Bynum Jr.
        The 4 cylinder engine in the 944 is a chopped V8 from the 928. The V6 from the Panamerea is the V8 without 2 cylinders. I think Porsche engineers already figured out how to downsize their own engines.
        Georg
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Dwight Bynum Jr.
        they donĀ“t need help to cut of two cylinder from a existing flat 6 engine.
          Dwight Bynum Jr.
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Georg
          Except you're not just cutting two cylinders off. Flat six engines are inherently smoother than flat fours. Subaru have long done their homework on smoothing out their turbo flat fours, an arena that Porsche hasn't been part of since the 1970s... hence my original comment.
      Richard
      • 1 Year Ago
      YAY! Another reason for Porsche to raise prices! Over/under on how much they charge for a boost gauge? I'll start the line at $1700.
      Mike Pulsifer
      • 1 Year Ago
      Am I the only one that can count 3 cylinders in that image?
        Dr Zoidberg
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Mike Pulsifer
        Nope I can count six. You do know what a horizontally opposed cylinder engine looks like?
        lazybeans
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Mike Pulsifer
        yup, it only shows 3 in the image. Of course, there's 3 on the other side of the engine making it a 6 cyl boxer layout
        RedRaiderGuy08
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Mike Pulsifer
        A flat 4 would have 2 cylinders per side. The one pictured is a flat 6, thats why you see 3 on the one side.
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