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Cayman Breezes Into Production

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Long after it had been an open secret, Porsche admits that a coupe version of the mid-engine Boxster is now in advanced phase of development and that it will be called the Cayman. From spy photos it can be seen that, up to the waistline, the car is identical to theBoxster, while the roofline is rather similar to the current 911 Carrera's.

It is not known if Porsche will offer the Cayman with two or more engine options, but as the model will be priced around the same level as the corresponding Boxsters, it seems probable that the Cayman's performance level will be kept below that of the 911. The Cayman's introduction is at September's Frankfurt auto show, with first deliveries in early 2006.

Porsche management says that no decision has yet been made regarding adding a 4-door sports sedan to its range, but everything indicates that the project is well underway. It appears that Porsche managing director Wendelin Wiedeking is determined to produce the car, which would be powered by a frontmounted engine based on the Cayenne's 4.5-liter V-8 and featuring either rear- or all-wheel drive. The car, for which the names "Panamera" and "Panamerica" have been reserved, would be based on a completely new platform. Expect the price of the base version to be about $135,000.

-Paul Frere

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