The News for May 12th, 2023

Welcome to the Hooniverse News! As always, this is a weekly recap of the biggest stories in the automotive industry without the fluff or bull. This week: Porsche brings RS goodness to the Boxster for the first time, Ford finally gives us the new US-spec Ranger, some teasers from Lexus for two new SUVs, plus your news for the week.

Porsche 718 Spyder RS

As rumors of the next-generation Boxster being all-electric spread further, Porsche is unleashing the most powerful and radical gas-powered version yet. For the first time ever, the mid-engine roadster is getting an RS version just as its hard-top counterpart (Cayman) got last year. The goal was to build a Boxster with the most engaging and audibly pleasing driving experience imaginable. And a direct copy/paste of the Cayman GT4 RS in a Boxster with a manual soft top is certainly the best way anyone could have done it.

Porsche confirms the powertrain is identical to what was created for the Cayman GT4 RS. The Boxster Spyder RS uses the same 4.0-liter naturally-aspirated flat-six engine lifted from the 911 GT3 but slightly retuned to produce roughly 493 horsepower and 332 lb.-ft. of torque. Porsche’s insanely quick seven-speed PDK is the only transmission available, but anyone who’s used one can’t be too upset about that. 0-62 mph takes just 3.4 seconds. And there’s nothing between your ear holes and the wonderful noise it makes through a standard stainless steel sport exhaust system. Just like the Cayman GT4 RS, the Boxster Spyder RS has strategically-placed air inlets just behind the headrests for enhanced and unfiltered induction noise.

Aerodynamics are only slightly changed from what’s seen on the GT4 RS, otherwise the body is basically just like the Cayman’s but with no roof. It still has a standard carbon fiber-reinforced plastic hood with a wide air outlet over the bumper, two NACA ducts for brake cooling, and sideblades for enhanced downforce. But the front splitter is a tiny bit shorter in the Boxster Spyder RS and the big rear wing is replaced by a ducktail-style spoiler.

Other performance improving hardware is largely unchanged from the GT4 RS. That includes standard Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM) with RS tuning and a 30mm reduction in ride height, Porsche Torque Vectoring with mechanical limited-slip differential, ball-jointed suspension bearings, and 20-inch forged aluminum wheels. Porsche says they set up the chassis to have razor-sharp steering precision as well as agile and extremely neutral handling. But if you want to, the ride height, camber, track, and anti-roll bar can all be adjusted individually. One thing that does change though compared to the GT4 RS is the Spyder RS’s spring and damper rates which have been reduced to achieve a more relaxed, “characteristically convertible-style” set-up.

Things like pricing and launch dates have not been announced yet.

[Source: Porsche]

Ford finally shows US-spec Ranger, Ranger Raptor

One of our fellow off-road experts already covered the details surrounding the Ranger Raptor, which is coming to the US for the first time later this year. Go there for all the glorious details. But the Raptor wasn’t the only thing they talked about. The latest international Ranger that’s been on sale in ‘Straya and Southeast Asia for over a year is finally arriving in US showrooms later this year. We can expect the same all-new styling as we’ve seen already, a bunch of new interior technology, and widened range of EcoBoost engines to power it all.

The Ranger is built on a strengthened and fully-boxed steel frame that’s been torture tested down under. The wheelbase and track have been extended two inches compared to the last model. Towing capacity is nearly best-in-class at 7,500-pounds (Chevy Colorado just beats it by 200 pounds) and it has a payload capacity of 1,805 pounds (which seems to be class-leading, for now) – for the most part, those numbers are similar to what the outgoing Ranger could do, depending on equipment and specification. When it comes to body configurations, that’s been decided for you. Every new Ranger is a SuperCrew cab configuration with a five-foot bed and I don’t expect that to change, except maybe for future Ford Pro contractor versions.

What hasn’t changed is the standard 2.3-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder gas engine which still produces a respectable 270 horsepower and 310 lb.-ft. of torque along with a ten-speed automatic to put that power down to the ground. What is new however is the addition of the 2.7-liter EcoBoost V6 from the F-150 and Bronco which produces 315 horsepower and 400 lb.-ft. of torque. That’s not some special engine reserved for the Raptor or anything either (Raptor has a 3.0-liter twin-turbo V6), you can get that in the regular Ranger. That’s a ton of power for such a small truck.

Moving inside, it’s just about the same as what we saw in the international truck last year. There’s a big screen for infotainment in the middle, two available digital gauge cluster sizes, and more storage solutions like an upper glovebox, bigger door pockets, rear storage bins under the seats, and fold-flat rear seat backs. The bed will be easier to access through side steps integrated into the body just behind the rear tires (which are wide enough to fit two feet). An available 400-watt power inverter with an outlet in the bed will prove to be useful as will the widened cargo area between the wheel wells which is now more than four feet wide.

The Ford press release did not talk pricing or launch dates, but I’ve seen a base price of roughly $34,000 mentioned and ordering books should open within the next two months.

For more info on the rad as hell Ranger Raptor, check out our earlier coverage here.

[Source: Ford]

Other coverage from the week

In addition to the Ranger Raptor coverage, there were also teasers from Lexus for two new vehicles – one of which is something entirely new. Lexus teased the TX, which our best guess has it as the fancier version of the Toyota Grand Highlander.

There’s also the GX, a replacement to their old-school body-on-frame 4WD SUV which might as well be considered ancient by today’s standards, however awesome it may be (so, every Toyota). The GX has earned a reputation for being a serious off-roader disguised as an upper class suburban family hauler – just ask Ross. So this could be a chance for Lexus to lean into that further and deliver a more rugged, adventure-ready SUV straight from the factory, as suggested by the mud featured prominently in the teaser shots.

[Source: Us]

What’s your news for the week?

hooniverse news whats your naws

So that’s all I’ve got for you this week, so now it’s your turn. If you saw anything, fixed something, broke everything, or otherwise did anything even remotely car related that you want to share with your fellow hoon, sound off in the comments.

Have a good weekend.

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6 responses to “The News for May 12th, 2023”

  1. Zentropy Avatar

    If Ford offered a 6-speed manual for the 4-pot Ranger, I’d be sold. I appreciate a good automatic for towing large heavy loads, but otherwise— and particularly with small/mid-sized trucks— I want to row my own.

    1. Greg Kachadurian Avatar
      Greg Kachadurian

      A midsize truck is something I could see being a decent fit for a manual as well. At least Toyota confirmed the new Tacoma would still offer a 6-speed in one of their 50 teasers released over the last few months.

  2.  Avatar

    I did some car work and car related work.

    First off the car related work. I installed a EVSE circuit in one of my rental properties. It was a side project as part of a larger project on the home. It needed a new heat pump and that ended up giving me an extra high amp circuit. The place originally had a pure electric furnace and someone had added a heat pump. So there were two 60a circuits for it and then a 30a circuit for the compressor unit. That heat pump was undersized so the new one needed a 40 a circuit. Meanwhile the new air handler just needed a 30a circuit. Thankfully the existing 30a circuit ran past the the furnace location. So I cut that circuit short and am using that for the air handler. The two 60a circuits moved into J-boxes in the attic space and from there I ran new wire in conduit to the HP and a new EVSE outlet. It didn’t add any cost to the permit to do the circuit now. That is a house I bought with the plan to become our at least short term retirement home so I’ll eventually use it, however in the mean time the tenant that is interested in renting the place does have a Soul EV, so it is a bonus for her.

    I’m hoping to get a 220v outlet to charge at home. The only problem is my garage is detached so I’m going to have dig and run new conduit and install a sub panel in the garage.

    Te direct auto work was finally changing the oil on my daily driver. The oil change required light has been coming on for a couple of months. When I removed the filter the date and miles I had written on it were exactly 6 months ago and 8200 mi. That however is still less than the recommended 10k interval so I don’t feel too bad. There is a reason that I normally set the oil reminder for 60% or 70% depending on the vehicle.

    I also washed the Marauders for the first time in way too long and cleaned the interior of one of them. I hope to put the summer tires on the one that runs them tomorrow along with my son’s summer tires and maybe rotate the tires on my daily driver.

    1. Sjalabais Avatar

      60A circuits? ? Both our heatpumps are on 15A circuits, which are now the strongest circuits allowed. Three phase, I believe, is still okay at 20A. But we have a 250V current here, that makes a difference, I guess.

      1. Scoutdude Avatar

        In the US we use 220v in addition to 110v. It is mainly things that involve heat and usually you don’t see many at only 15a. Range is 50a, water heater and dryer are 30a. If you have a cook top and wall over many will have their own separate 30a circuit. AC/HP are commonly up to 60a for the largest residential units, wall/baseboard heaters are about the only thing you’ll typically find with a 15a 220v circuit and even that isn’t common. In that house there are 9 220v circuits. 50a range, 40a heat pump, 30a, cooktop, dryer, water heater, furnace, sauna, EVSE and a 20a for a wall heater in the room that isn’t served by the forced air system. However note those are all oversized by requirement. If a circuit is likely to be used continously, which really means 3hrs, then the circuit is down rated 20%. So for example that 30a EVSE circuit is only really rated for 24a.

        On the 110v side of things lots of 20a circuits are mandated. Refer, Dishwasher, bathroom outlets, and 2 counter top circuits are the minimum required. If you have a garage or a built in microwave those will also need their own 20a 110v circuit.

        One of the reasons this place had such a large electric furnace originally is because it was built back when electricity was especially cheap in our area, places weren’t insulated well and had single pane aluminum windows. So not very efficient by today’s standards plus it was originally built as a weekend home, so there was a desire to have a system that will bring the temp up 15-20 degrees in less than a hour.

  3. Salguod Avatar

    Still buried in bathroom remodeling, but I did manage to get an ignition switch ordered and installed on the Boxster. Didn’t fix the no crank condition, however. Going to check the neutral safety switch next, then the starter.

    My youngest’s Protege has an occasional no crank condition. Had the battery checked and it was supposedly bad, so I replaced it. Didn’t change anything. Cleaned the engine ground strap connections and it’s better, but not gone. Thinking it may be the starter there.