Wine (Country) in a Box

“WHERE IS EVERYONE?!” I asked myself as I followed the parkway into Niagara Falls. I expected the city to be relatively quiet on a COVID-era Tuesday morning, but the city’s emptiness truly surprised me. On the upside, it made for stellar photo-ops for the 2020 Boxster GTS 4.0 in GT Silver I was driving that day courtesy of Porsche Canada. As I drove by the Falls, I was able to pull over right in front of the rising mist and — without any tourists crowding into my photo frame — grab that money shot that’s gracing the cover of this issue.

I had been looking forward to driving this car for weeks, as it’s on my list of potential future acquisitions and I wanted to see if it lived up to my expectations. It did. My first 911 was a cabrio and, ever since switching to a coupe, I’ve been missing that sensorial magic that comes with driving a top-down Porsche. Punching the accelerator and hearing the engine without the filter of an enclosed cabin is a special sound and — when that sound is coming from a 4.0-litre, naturally aspirated flat-six with a 7,800 RPM redline — well, that’s a lot of sensorial magic. 

If you’re in the market for this type of car, you’ll also have the Boxster Spyder on your radar — I know I do. With a chassis designed by Porsche Motorsport, a bit more power (414 hoursepower versus the 394 in the GTS), and that gorgeous rear deck, the Spyder ticks a lot of boxes, and wins over a lot of people who might otherwise have gone for the GTS. On the other hand, the GTS has a much more user-friendly soft-top, with a push button that opens and closes it in 12 seconds, while the Spyder takes a minute or two of manual labour to make the change. Spyder owners will point out all of the advantages I missed, and that the top isn’t that hard to change — and they’re probably right. But there’s no battle here, they’re both stellar steeds.

Stopping at one of the boat launches along the way to take a photo once again reinforced how incredibly beautiful this car is.

I continued along the parkway towards Niagara-on-the-Lake, flipping through the gears manually using the PDK paddles (yes, I prefer manual control) — with the incredibly beautiful wineries on my left, and the powerful Niagara River on my right. The Bordeaux Red interior felt like the perfect fit for the region and would certainly be an upgrade worth investing in. Other enhancements on this particular model included the Premium Package (luggage nets, LED light design, lane change assist and power folding mirrors), adaptive 18-way ventilated sport seats, adaptive cruise control, navigation, and of course that PDK double-clutch transmission.

Stopping at one of the many boat launches along the way to take a photo of the car with the river flowing in behind, the image in front of me once again reinforced how incredibly beautiful this car is. The design of the front fascia of the car is strong and handsome, the sides channel the air into those now-very-large scoops — and the design energy continues its flow over the hind quarters to a sublime rear end.

What a day. What a machine. What a beautiful region of Ontario. </>

Photos by Christopher Hebert

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