Mods & Repairs

(updated 10/01/08)

"Schnell" - German for fast

Modifications (upgrades)

  • 3 Spoke Wheel and airbag with gold crest
  • Updated shifter knob out of a 2002 996 - removed the silver paint (scratched and ugly)
  • Rear storage compartment and rear speakers. Since my rear speaker box had red carpet on it and my interior was black, I tore off all the carpet (a real pain) and applied black leather to it. It looks much better now.
  • Applied leather to the oddments tray cover, knee panels on the center console, and sides of the cubbies below the dash.
  • Replaced center console. The original was in bad shape and "wobbly."
  • Air vent cup holders
  • Upgraded nasty old Becker head unit (CDR 210) to Alpine CDA-9853 (it thumps!)
  • Litronics (Xenon) lamp upgrade with clear corners
  • Red and clear rear tail lamps
  • Clear side markers
  • Techart Silver Gauge Faces
  • Aluminum Trim Rings for the Gauges
  • Newer leather seats out of a 2002 Carrera. 8 Way electric, and heated too. (Driver's side couldn't be used as-is, so I recovered my original seat with the new seat's leather and foam cushions, retaining all the comfort and heat sans the 8 way electric part.)
  • Sport Headers (much larger than stock, providing about 15 additional WHP and 18 pounds of torque) and Sport Muffler (finally, I have a nice loud sports car!)
  • Replaced the ROH rims on the car with 18 inch, 5-spoke aftermarket Carrera rims.
  • "MACH SCHNELL" spoiler decal. When I go fast, it pops up and says "Go Faster!"
  • Valentine 1 Radar/Laser Detector- Honorable mention...I drive fast. What can I say?
  • Ksport Kontrol fully adjustable coilovers installed. Car rides on rails now with little to no body roll. I have 36 levels of dampening and separate ride height adjustments.
  • Added adjustable toe links front and back to dial in the right alignment settings after the Ksports were added.
  • Swapped the nasty, worn out vinyl door panels with black leather panels. Nice!

I haven't done all the mods I want to do to this car due to the long repair list found below. Here's a few things I would like to do to the car in the future:

  • Replace the top with a lifetime guaranteed GAHH glass window version .
  • Repaint the car—full tear down, panel clean up, paint and re-assemble. "Restoration quality" is what I'll be after.
  • I will probably add a CTR front bumper, new skirts, and rear bumper from Xtreme Motorcars. I've seen their work and it is excellent. Check them out!

Here's some stuff I want for the car if you have it for sale:

  • Black leather dash including a black leather instrument cluster cover.

    Email me at: lladnar777 (at) yahoo (dot) com if you have a black leather dash for sale or know where I can find one at a reasonable price.



Repairs (not as fun as the modifications)

  • Horn pad replacement (I did this on my 4 spoke before I upgraded) $220
  • Second key made (listed due to the expense!) $240
  • Replaced instrument cluster (old one had an LED out on the speedo area) $585
  • Replaced transmission (original one made noise in 1st gear due to previous owner's crappy driving skills) $2100 (salvage unit used).
  • Replaced clutch (while I was replacing the tranny, why not!) $350
  • Replaced brake pads (the faster you drive, the faster these wear out) $220
  • Replaced front right ball-joint variety control arm (Now done TWICE on the same wheel since I have owned the car and driven it like a garage queen). $295
  • Replaced Tires (This is going to be an annual thing, I can tell). $1200
  • Replaced Fuel Sending Unit (an effort to get the fuel indicator to read full, but it didn't work. Moving the needle manually when I replaced the gauge faces DID work.) $350
  • Replaced rear struts (rear right one was bent from previous owner's stupid driving). $650
  • Replaced ignition switch. One would think Porsche would fix this for good, but they're still making cars with crappy, plastic ignition switches! $90
  • Replaced driver's side (primary) radiator fan (it was dead before I bought the car and caused minor temp increases in stopped traffic jams.) $350
  • Replaced oddments tray hinge (pictoral) (The hinge on the center "glove box" always falls apart in 97-99 models because it was made of plastic.) $22
  • Replaced center console (the old one was held on by just two screws). Free (got it on trade).
  • Replaced oxygen sensors (all four, of course... never do just one). $450
  • Replaced seat belt receptacles. The source of most airbag lights, and yet another thing Porsche refuses to redesign. $60
  • Replaced radiator coolant tank resoivor + cap. These always seem to crack and mine had a hairline crack that was getting worse. $600
  • Replaced right window regulator. These go out as well, making the window not go up fully on one side or the other. $350
  • Replaced oil filler tube (Accordian-like plastic is cheap. This part is very difficult to replace due to its location through the firewall). $275
  • Replaced top mechanism dash switch. $19
  • Replaced brake rotors with Zimmerman cross-drilled, cadmium plated units. $600
  • Rebuilt front right caliper with aftermarket piston seals and dust boots (a piston stuck after I replaced the rotors and pads and warped the front right brand new rotor. Grrr. $130
  • Replaced warped rotor and bled brake system again. $130
  • Replaced the other three lower control arms (the ones with ball joints). $560
  • Replaced the rear track arms (the long ones). $650
  • Replaced all four wheel bearings. Car rides smoothly and quietly now ... and there is no more annoying steering wheel vibration! $1100

    Total repair costs to date: $11,596 (Incl. 1 set of tires and pads) in 5 years.

    Advice: If you're reading this page and thinking about buying a pre-woned Porsche, remember that the least expensive Porsche you buy will be the most expensive car you will keep in your garage (until you buy a Ferrari). If you find a "cheap" Boxster, budget at least $2,000 a year for repairs. Inform your wife of this annual budget item well in advance of the car purchase <-- just advice from one guy to another... you can thank me later.

    Why dump $12k in repairs and $8k in mods into a car worth $12k? Boxsters are amazing sports cars and handle better than any 911 I have driven. I also plan to keep my car for a long, long time and replacing it with a newer 987 Boxster S cost far more. So all this is worth it to me. Plus, I've learned a great deal about Porsches and car repair in general and that's worth something to me.