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FR-S / BRZ vs.... Area to discuss the FR-S/BRZ against its competitors [NO STREET RACING]


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Old 01-13-2020, 11:39 AM   #1
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996 911 vs FRS/BRZ

This comparison has been in my most recent search history. Why the 996? Porsche enthusiasts hate the car because it's different. The hated "fried egg headlights" ironically are shared with the beloved 911 GT1, which nobody says anything bad about. For reasons "it doesn't look like a 911," the car can be picked up fairly cheap, and the issues of the exploding IMS bearing (which can be repaired, or modified with a bushing and oil supply line to lube the bushing) and if you go the GT3, GT2, or Turbo models, they use the Mezger race engine which is a different design and doesn't have the IMS problem. Even picking up a base 911 (in a MT) sounds appealing because the price points are very much in the range of a used FRS/BRZ. And, if you get the 1999 or 2000, you now start to qualify for "classic car insurance," which is cheaper.
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Old 01-13-2020, 04:53 PM   #2
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Are you asking if you should buy an FR-S/BRZ or 996? If so apples and oranges - 996 is definitely a great car. A few visual updates (updated rims, slightly lower springs, etc) and they're pretty nice. But with the early ones (which I like) you're talking about a 20 year old Porsche. I wouldn't worry about the IMS etc, I'd worry about bushings, coolant hoses, braking systems, etc. Old car vs new car argument - make sure you have the budget/time/fortitude for it, if so it will run circles around any 86 (until you FI the 86).
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Old 01-13-2020, 05:33 PM   #3
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Let's clarify that 911 GT1 thing real quick. The first version of that race car used a 993 looking front end. The 2nd version used the 996 weird headlights version.

And I definitely think the 2nd version using the 996 headlights looks ugly. A million times over for every Deutsche mark it cost new.

Not ugly:


Ugly:


Honestly none of them look good, the proportions are atrocious.
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Old 01-13-2020, 05:55 PM   #4
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I'm constantly amazed out how much emphasis and importance people place on the way a car looks, and the amount of money some are willing to spend to customize their vehicles in ways that don't impact performance at ALL, but rather just to look a certain way.

Man, am I glad my wife didn't use those criteria to pick a husband!
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Old 01-14-2020, 08:19 AM   #5
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I'm constantly amazed out how much emphasis and importance people place on the way a car looks, and the amount of money some are willing to spend to customize their vehicles in ways that don't impact performance at ALL, but rather just to look a certain way.

Man, am I glad my wife didn't use those criteria to pick a husband!
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Old 01-14-2020, 11:15 AM   #6
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Hating on a car for the headlights is just stupid. I had a 996 I turbo and those are the performance bargain of the century IMO. The NA 996 for the money is tough to beat. More Analog than the newer ones and as mentioned with a few mods is a great car. The issue is in the maintenance and potential issues with an older P car. It’s never how much you actually pay for a car, it’s what it costs in the long run.
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Old 01-14-2020, 01:26 PM   #7
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Unpopular Opinion: I like the headlights, once you get the orange from the indicator out of there.

Where the 996 is ugly is the steering wheel, head unit, and climate controls. Its like a 90's Taurus!

Outside the car is fineeeee.

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Old 01-14-2020, 01:58 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MuseChaser View Post
I'm constantly amazed out how much emphasis and importance people place on the way a car looks, and the amount of money some are willing to spend to customize their vehicles in ways that don't impact performance at ALL, but rather just to look a certain way.

Man, am I glad my wife didn't use those criteria to pick a husband!
I would never buy an ugly car. It's something I have to look at every day. Most car buying purchases for me involve emotion to some degree. Even with a "practical" car purchase, when given the choice, why pick something ugly over something attractive. And the last thing I ever want to do is reinforce a designer's ugly car by endorsing it with my own money (hello Honda Civic).

For the Porsche 996, yes it's a brilliant performing car. However, it's not just the "looks" that bother some people. It's the very first Porsche built to a (budget) price point. And it is glaringly obvious that the quality is lacking.
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Old 01-14-2020, 02:13 PM   #9
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Unpopular Opinion: I like the headlights, once you get the orange from the indicator out of there.

Where the 996 is ugly is the steering wheel, head unit, and climate controls. Its like a 90's Taurus!

Outside the car is fineeeee.

black interior and a MOMO wheel FTW
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Old 01-15-2020, 12:03 AM   #10
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Right before my FRS, I had a 1997 Boxster project. Mine had the 2.5L flat-6, vs the Boxster S models that share the 3.2 flat-6, 6MT with the 996.

The Boxster is nearly identical from the doors forward. It had a lot of parts stamped "996"
It was really just like a smaller, roadster version of the 996. Most of the interior is the same as well.

Anyways, the car was a mess. And not because it was a project. It had 45k miles, and mechanically was fine. Despite being rated at "201" hp, my FRS felt like a rocketship in comparison. The Boxster also didn't handle in any sort of remarkable way. Looking over the car, there were a number of awkward or downright stupid things Porsche did when designing that platform. Many, many excuses made by owners.
It was ridiculous. The FRS was vastly superior in every way. Power, handling, reliability, comfort, road noise, modern features, etc.

As far as the 996 specifically, I actually did try to buy one, which is how I ended up with the poor Boxster.
A cheap 996 is ~$13k. That's for a clapped out one with the weird automatic trans.
The 75k mile ones start around $18k, and it's mid $20s for anything "fresh".
Again, that's for a car old enough to vote...that still needs to be 'gone through'.
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Old 01-15-2020, 12:50 PM   #11
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Are you asking if you should buy an FR-S/BRZ or 996? If so apples and oranges - 996 is definitely a great car. A few visual updates (updated rims, slightly lower springs, etc) and they're pretty nice. But with the early ones (which I like) you're talking about a 20 year old Porsche. I wouldn't worry about the IMS etc, I'd worry about bushings, coolant hoses, braking systems, etc. Old car vs new car argument - make sure you have the budget/time/fortitude for it, if so it will run circles around any 86 (until you FI the 86).


No, this is good! It's a quick reminder that aftermarket support makes this comparison very much an apples/oranges scenario. Sometimes I fall a little too far down a rabbit hole and lose sight of which way is up.
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Old 01-15-2020, 12:54 PM   #12
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Right before my FRS, I had a 1997 Boxster project. Mine had the 2.5L flat-6, vs the Boxster S models that share the 3.2 flat-6, 6MT with the 996.
There are a ton of qualities that I absolutely love about the Boxster platform. Engine access (to my untrained eye) seems like a Boxster would be more of an engine-out car for "simple maintenance" like spark plugs or other things that you'd need space to work on. Not that a 911 is any better, although the rear bumper can come off. I'm a very big supporter of small and light (which led me to FT86Club in the first place).
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Old 01-15-2020, 01:02 PM   #13
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There are a ton of qualities that I absolutely love about the Boxster platform. Engine access (to my untrained eye) seems like a Boxster would be more of an engine-out car for "simple maintenance" like spark plugs or other things that you'd need space to work on. Not that a 911 is any better, although the rear bumper can come off. I'm a very big supporter of small and light (which led me to FT86Club in the first place).
uhh...yes. Lol. Engine maintenance was a headache, for sure.

So one of the differences between the Boxster and the 911 is technically the placement of the engine.
The Boxster was more "mid-rear engine", rear wheel drive, while the 911 is rear-engine, rear wheel drive.

It's kinda like if the transmission is slightly in front of the rear axle, and you flip the engine about the transmission. So the 911 engine is moved further back right at the rear axle.

As a result, the 911 engine is exposed if you flip up the rear access panel. Still not a great deal of access, but potentially easier to do an engine out service, I suppose.

The 986 engine is quite silly to access. First of all, the engine is directly under the rear 'shelf' where the convertible top folds down into. It is then covered with a thick foam and carpet cover, then it has a rigid plastic cover. But you can't access them with the top either up, or down, so you have to unfasten the bottom part of the convertible top and put it in a weird position, then remove the 2 covers, at which point you have pitiful access to the engine.
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Old 01-15-2020, 01:56 PM   #14
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uhh...yes. Lol. Engine maintenance was a headache, for sure....

...The 986 engine is quite silly to access. First of all, the engine is directly under the rear 'shelf' where the convertible top folds down into. It is then covered with a thick foam and carpet cover, then it has a rigid plastic cover. But you can't access them with the top either up, or down, so you have to unfasten the bottom part of the convertible top and put it in a weird position, then remove the 2 covers, at which point you have pitiful access to the engine.


My dyslexia is in overdrive with all the ups, downs, downups, updowns, up ups, down downs, and all arounds. At least the 86 has a clean engine bay (so far).
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