My love affair with Porsche has been through some rough patches
over the years. The Cayenne was a serious tiff: Brilliantly engineered
car but not what a Porsche should be. Then the Panamera, and that nearly
finished us off completely.  But always, when I'm considering straying,
Zuffenhausen lobs me a bunch of roses. Usually it's a hot version of
the 911, but this year's sweetener was the Boxster Spyder.

At
first I though the car might be an overpriced tart-up job but when I
read the specs hopes started to rise. Very subtle tweaking; little bit
of weight shaved here, a different bush there and a couple of extra bhp
dialled - the classic Porsche strategy that usually adds up to a lot
more than went into the mix.

I drove one to Le Mans and back
(not during race week) and apart from stupidly ignoring the roof's erect
speed limit, which resulted in what looked like a hurricane damaged
tent lying a few miles behind me on the Autoroute, was a brilliant trip.
The Boxster is a dynamically brilliant car anyway, but these minor mods
turned it into something even more special.

I'm hoping that the
new Cayman R will be equally good. Of course using the hallowed 'R'
suffix that was used on the incredibly light 911R from the late '60s is
sacrilege but you can't expect miracles when marketing departments are
involved.