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2020 Porsche 718 Spyder Overview

William Kinton
Automotive Editor - January 17, 2020

What's New

The 2020 Porsche 718 Spyder is an all-new model, sporting some serious upgrades over the standard 718 Boxster convertible.

Instead of the Boxster's 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine, the Spyder gets a naturally-aspirated 4.0-liter flat six-cylinder, alongside a performance-tuned adaptive suspension, a bespoke sport exhaust that burbles and pops, the front axle and brakes from the Porsche 911 GT3, and a mechanical limited-slip differential.

The result is one of the finest sports cars on the market today, designed from the beginning to be a celebration of the joy of driving.

Choosing Your Porsche 718 Spyder

The 718 Spyder has only one trim level that starts at $97,650 including destination.

However, you don't need to be afraid that yours will look like everyone else's. Like almost all Porsche models, the Spyder has an exhausting list of options and packages that can make your head (and wallet) hurt.

Engine Choices

The Porsche 718 Spyder comes with a single engine choice, a 4.0-liter naturally aspirated flat six-cylinder engine that makes 414 horsepower and 309 pound-feet of torque. It gets from 0-60 mph in 4.2 seconds and has a top speed of 187 mph.

This engine was developed from the 3.0-liter turbo flat-six found in the latest 911 Carrera models, but substantial changes make it feel like a new species. Porsche engineers increased the displacement to 4.0 liters, and it was given new internals from the crankshaft to the valvetrain. This new engine will spin up to a whopping 8,000 RPM, providing a delightful howl through the sport exhaust designed exclusively for the 718.

Staying true to the 718 Spyder's devotion to driving pleasure, the only available transmission is a six-speed manual. While automatics may be more fuel-efficient and quicker, the Spyder's manual can help match revs when downshifting so you don't have to heel-toe if you don't want to.

Passenger and Cargo Capacity

The 718 Spyder is not a place to throw a party. There's only room for two, and there's a pretty minimal 5.2 cubic feet in the front trunk and 4.2 in the back. It should prove to be enough for a long weekend excursion for two, but not much more.

Safety Features

The Porsche 718 Spyder hasn't been crash tested, as is the norm for expensive sports cars that sell at low volumes. It does, however, have roll bars to keep occupants from getting crushed in a rollover, along with a choice of ultra-bright headlight options.

As for active safety features, standard rear parking sensors are all that's available. The 718 Spyder is all about driving actively, not commuting or dawdling in traffic while half-paying attention to your surroundings.

However, there is the option for a fire extinguisher mounted under the passenger seat, available for $140, as well as carbon ceramic brakes that stop so quick it might tear your face off. That's considered a safety feature, right?


While the Spyder isn't defined by connectivity, it isn't stuck in the 20th century either. All models feature a 7-inch infotainment screen with Bluetooth, two USB ports, satellite radio, HD radio, a CD player, and an 11-gigabyte internal jukebox that music can be uploaded to,

Unfortunately, Porsche requires $360 for Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto isn't available. Other standalone options include navigation ($2,320) and a smartphone compartment ($560) that boosts signal and charges wirelessly.

718 Spyder - From $97,650

We have the 718 Spyder listed out separately, but it can essentially be seen as a special trim of the 718 Boxster. It comes with 20-inch wheels, bi-Xenon headlights, leatherette seating, and a 4.6-inch instrument cluster.

In addition to the aforementioned engine and suspension upgrades, the Spyder gets a lightweight manual-folding cloth convertible top eschewing motorization for weight savings, as well as enhanced aerodynamic elements that increase downforce and improve traction when cornering.

The Spyder offers similar levels of interior customization as the Boxster with various materials like aluminum, leather, and carbon fiber that can be dressed up in many colors and combinations (for a price, of course).

We find the Spyder Classic Interior Package ($2,800) to be the most compelling way to deck out the inside. This dresses up the interior with a two-tone mix of Bordeaux Red and Black leather, GT Silver interior trim, and a two-tone fabric top that reminisces on Porsche race cars of the past.

The Spyder does receive classic Porsche options like active dampers and the Sport Chrono package as standard, but there are other upgrades that Porsche leaves optional. Most prominently are the carbon ceramic brakes ($8,000) that can bring it to a stop unbelievably quickly.

Compare 718 Spyder Specs

CarsDirect Tip

If we were outfitting a 2020 Porsche 718 Spyder, we would choose the Spyder Classic Interior Package and forgo the carbon ceramic brakes; not only are they expensive upfront, servicing them can be outrageously pricey.

If something with a hard roof is more up your alley, check out the Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 – it's a Spyder coupe in everything but name.

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