Cayman Diaries

Review of my 3 year ownership of the Porsche Cayman 2.7

Cayman Diaries: Wheel Cleaning

Small update
I’ve had the car for 16,000 miles now and have just hit an average of 30mpg!! Really good I think for a sports car with a pretty large engine.

Wheels
Its time for the other wheels to come back on, so I’ve given them a clean this weekend with some Coma Wheel Cleaner. I’m happy to report that it actually works! The jet wash wasn’t shifting much, but a quick scrub with this stuff followed by a rinse and the difference was amazing. Here they are mid-rinse with before and after shots…

2 done, 2 left to do…

Wheel cleaning!

Wheel cleaning!

Before...

Before...

...after

...after

Nice and shiny!

Nice and shiny!

Not bad for a freebie product from a car show!! 🙂

Cayman Diaries: A New Home

Cayman has its own house!
It’s been a busy few months for us, my lady and I have just moved house. I’m now the proud owner of a garage in which to keep my four-wheeled friend!! My dream has come true!

On moving day, my car was eager to help with the transporting of goods (and to move into its garage!), so I gleefully fulfilled its desire … with all of 3 boxes before realising that it wasn’t really suited for the job of removal van. So it had to wait whilst I got busy in various other vehicles.

Stepping back in time a little, when we went to view the property, job one on my list was to check the width of the garage. Something of a talking point, the occupiers saying they’d never seen anyone measuring the garage width before even looking at the house.  . Anyhow, a measure of the garage and again on the car (a quick arm-stretch over the bonnet, no less) showed the garage entrance would have just shy of an acre on either side in which to get the car in – with enough room at the back of the garage to hold medium sized dinner parties. Marvellous!

Fast forward to moving-in day, and on parking the Cayman in front of the garage, my excitement succumbed to worry, as it didn’t actually look like the car was going to fit!!

Thankfully, it did – the neighbour opposite helpfully shouting over the road “you’ll never get that in there”. But it fits nice and snug and Paulie is one happy chappy indeed.

I don’t think I’m great with a tape measure though – one of the curtain poles being further testament to that.

Cover
With its new house I’ve treated Cayman to an indoor cover too…

Cayman, in the garage with its bedsheets

In the garage with its bedsheets

The cover is made of a sort-of silk-look fabric on the top, and then soft bedding type material underneath.

My girlies mum helped me put it on for the first time. “Don’t forget to put those little pockets over the wing mirrors” says I, as we are gliding it over the top. “Well! I’ve never seen anything like this” came the reply; “tucking your car up in bed for the night ”

I like it though, finished everything off nicely!

(And yes, the floor will be painted soon, and some posters are going up on the walls!)

Engine
The garage has done wonders for the cars running too. In keeping it warm and sheltered there has been a noticeable change in the engine, it gets warm quickly, drives very smoothly from the off, and there isn’t any of that ‘notchy’ coldness that you get when keeping a car outside.

Problems

Failure on dashboard

Failure on dashboard

1 month into the new house, all was going well, until last Thursday. Leaving work, the car wouldn’t start (the engine turned but wouldn’t fire). A small spark was heard and I managed to get it started. However it wouldn’t hold the revs without stalling so I set off without further ado.

10 seconds later, the temperature gauge – and potentially my bank balance and heart – dropped to zero, the red light started flashing and “Failure Indicator ” appeared on the dash. I couldn’t believe it – 4 weeks out of warranty!!
Thankfully, this has now been resolved. It fixed itself (marvellous!) on the way to the garage. It looks like some dirt might have got onto the sensor and has now cleared. If it happens again, I’ll be having the sensor replaced, but this shouldn’t be a high-cost exercise.

The boys at Porsche Euro sorted me out good and proper, and they also enabled the auto-door lock, which wasn’t switched on, on my car. I’d recommend them for anyone in the West Yorkshire area.

My local car detailing specialist also reprimanded me for not cleaning the car properly, and I will be having him round as soon as my bank balance has recovered from the house purchase to return the car back to good-as-new. I can’t wait!!

Wheels
The rubber on the 18’s is now past its best, so the 17s will be going back on for the winter period in the next few weeks. A comfier ride will ensue as a result, just what I need for the cold winter months.

MPG
Now 29.9 average since I bought it. Yeah!!!!

Cayman Diaries: M.O.T.

MOT Time!
On the first of September, my car will become 3 years old. I’ve had it now for just shy of one year, and what a great year it has been!

Porsche Leeds called me asking if I’d like to book it in. Glad of the reminder, as I’d forgotten about it. They were doing an offer for £29.99. Bargain! Booked in, and courtesy car planned.

Forgot my driving license, so I couldn’t have the car but those nice chaps sorted me out with a lift to work in one of the Cayenne Diesels. Very impressive – I didn’t realise it was a diesel until he told me as I arrived at the office car park!

Anyhow, car passed with flying colours, just a couple of the usual advisories on break pads and tyres. AND – it got a free wash (which was badly needed). Superb, overall I think Porsche service is very good indeed. The only downer being that they didn’t have anyone available for a lift back to pick my car up and alternative options were not forthcoming.

MPG
Now 29.7. Woohooo!!

Warranty
Now comes the decision as to whether or not to renew the warranty. It won’t be with Porsche, as the price hike in 2009 made it ridiculously overpriced. I’m considering either a Tesco warranty or the famed Gamble warranty (i.e., none at all). Decisions, decisions….!! (Update: In the end, I decided not to bother. Time will tell if this was a good idea or not).

Something special
This was in the OPC at Leeds. It’s a customer car, being looked after for the time being. Very, very nice indeed!! Apparently this particular car is actually used by its fortunate owner and has about 18,000 miles on the clock. Respect!!!

Carrera GT 1

Carrera GT 1

Carrera GT 2

Carrera GT 2

Carrera GT 3

Carrera GT 3

Cayman Diaries: Bumper respray

MPG
MPG is now up to 29.5MPG after 13,000 miles. Woohoo!

picture of the problem

picture of the problem

Bumper
Unfortunately the paint on the bumper had started peeling after giving the car a wash recently. Porsche have very stringent standards when it comes to selling a car as an Approved Used model, and this frequently involves re-spraying the bumper due to stone chips. The cause of the peeling is likely to do with the lacquer not being properly sealed to the bumper when it was re-sprayed. This meant that when it became stone chipped, the lacquer rose from the paintwork, and a jet wash resulted in the lacquer peeling away.

I initially took the car to my local OPC, but they diagnosed the fault as being stone chip related and in their opinion was not faulty workmanship. I got a second opinion from another prestige body shop. They took a look at in and it was their belief that the fault was due to the way it was sprayed and that the bumper had been masked, rather than fully stripped and sprayed. Despite the re-spray being a requirement of Porsche to sell the car as an Approved Used example, it was no longer covered by Porsche warranty. I called Porsche GB who, after much to-ing and fro-ing agreed to do the work at Sheffield (my local) for £100. This wasn’t good enough for me, as I shouldn’t be paying to repair a bodge job. I called Newcastle and spoke to the sales manager. As it happened, he had the Body shop manager in with him at the time. After speaking to both – who were surprised at the incident told me to bring the car back to them.

After a valet..

After a valet..

I reminded them that they were several hours away from my home, but were very accommodating. “We will provide you with a courtesy car, fully fuelled, which you can keep until your able to get back to us. We will also fill your car with fuel for the inconvenience”. You can’t say fairer than that can you!

I took the car back to Newcastle who repainted the bumper and it now looks good-as-new. The dealership clearly takes pride in their work and both the sales manager, and the body shop manager couldn’t do enough to rectify the fault.

All the stone chips have gone and the workmanship is exemplary. A perfect, unblemished nose at 23,000 miles is a bonus. Being low to the ground, all Porsche’s are prone to stone chips and getting a quality re-spray can be an expensive job. This one came in at around £600, courtesy of Porsche. No half-jobs done this time.

Newcastle gave me a loaner 09 Cayman S PDK by replacement and this is a stunning car. It was much better than I was expecting. You can read the review here.

Getting my car back was a great experience though; I was quite excited after a week of it being away! When we arrived it was sat in the showroom (in the same position as it was when I bought it!). I decided to take some photos as I forgot to do it when I bought it. Unfortunately the camera battery ran out after 2 pictures but I think you’ll agree it does look fantastic under showroom lighting;

My Cayman at the Porsche dealership

My Cayman at the Porsche dealership

The dealership had put a “sold” sign next to my car. It had been in the showroom since the work had been done and fully valeted and it had attracted quite a bit of sales interest. 🙂

Driving my car the 100 miles home after collection I realised that the driving position is better in the PDK model – the steering wheel is smaller in the Gen2 (it has a flat bottom) and there is more legroom given the lack of a clutch pedal. This all adds up to a much more comfortable drive (being 6’4″, every inch of room helps around the steering wheel). Food for thought on any potential future purchase!

Newcastle service was excellent and I will probably use them for its service, when it’s due next year. I am really happy with the result and their attitude.

Other faults
Whilst in for its initial paintwork inspection (at Sheffield, before it went to Newcastle), they noticed a few problems which were fixed under warranty;

* RMS was sweating – this (and the IMS seal) was replaced. A common occurrence on these cars.
* Leak in the steering rack. Fixed
* Play in one of the rod-ends, this was replaced (I had to pay for the part at about £58 and forgot to ask for my Porsche Club discount. Doh!!).

A Good job the paint peeled really, or I would have had to fork out for this lot once the warranty had expired!

Sheffield gave me a Cayenne for a week whilst they undertook the repairs.  Review here.

Happy days!
All is well again now though, and I’m a happy bunny once again. Here is to many more months/years of happy motoring (hopefully!!)

Cayman Diaries: New Wheels!

I acquired these from eBay about 3 weeks ago, finally got round to fitting them yesterday.

Before:

Cayman on 17's

Cayman on 17's

After (gave it a wash too):

Cayman on 18's

Picture taken with camera-phone, hence the pinkness!

I think they look awesome!!

First impressions…

The tyres are bloomin’ huge! 235 on front, 265 on the back!! (my 17’s were 205 and 235 respectively). They are also sporting the brand and make of tyre as my old wheels.

The 18s are noticeably louder than the 17s giving off a lot more road-noise, which was quite unexpected. You feel more of the unevenness in the road as well. Potholes etc are now more noticeable in the cabin. The price you pay for vanity I guess.

I’ve decided to keep the old ones, at least for now, as the tread is good. Being smaller wheels they will probably be better in the bad weather of winter too, and will keep the car a bit quieter in the rubbish months. But, as appearances go, I’m now 100% happy with my car. It looks great, sounds great and drives great. Marvellous!!

Cayman Diaries: A 6 month review

6 months, and around 6,000 miles have passed without a hitch. The tax reminder came through, £210 for the year. Can’t grumble really, not too shabby for a sports car. I’m glad its not in the top bracket, and was one of the contributing factors in my decision to purchase (I’m thinking if my baby ever becomes a partial garage queen, then I don’t want my pants down for the tax each year).

She had a bath (inside and out) a couple of weekends ago and looked spiffingly shiny and super red. Due for another clean this weekend, hoping to do that tomorrow if its nice. Roll on summer, weekends spent basking out in the sun with the rags and polish.

Build Quality
The build is still pretty exceptional, with no issues to report to date. Really pleased. There is a weird whistle noise on the driver’s wing mirror, but only at motorway speeds in the rain, but you can’t hear it with the radio on, so no bother. I put that down to aerodynamics.

Door hinges are my only gripe – but this is on all Porsches, not just mine. Why does the hinge only have 2 positions when you open it; position 1 is too narrow to get out, and position 2 is so big so you hit the car next to you. Consequently you have to do a contortionist manoeuvre in busy car parks so as not to damage your door. Other 3-door cars don’t seem to have this problem.

Tyres.
Standard jobs, I’ve noticed that when on full lock the tyres kind of jump a bit when your turning hard (such as reversing out of a parking space). It feels like they are skipping/slipping a bit. There is plenty of tread left on them. It feels a bit strange, but I’m told that all 987 (and probably other Porsche’s) do this. A personality trait, then.

 

Cayman Seat 2

Cayman Seat 2

Cayman Seat 1
Cayman Seat 1

Seats.
Whilst build is good, I’ve got my doubts about the longevity of the materials used for the seats. My car has only done 18,000 but there is a faint sign of bum-cheekage on the drivers seat, and my ass ain’t that heavy I’m sure (I’d know, I carry it around with me everywhere I go). Its OK for now though.

The bad news is that the passenger seat has taken a bit of a scratch on the bolster area from where my lady has been sliding in and out, the buckles on her jeans have brushed passed it a few times and its scratched the leather and slightly broken it. Part and parcel of using it as a daily driver I guess, but the 986 left my hands at 7 years old and 90,000 miles without so much as a mark on the leather.

Hmmmmm….

Blind Spot!

Be Careful chaps and chapesses, I noticed today there is a blind spot on the passenger side – which is perfectly sized for bikers. I noticed one coming up close in the left-hand lane (motorway, packed with traffic). At about 40mph, he sat in the blind spot for about 1/4 mile. I knew he was there as I saw him approaching, but if I hadn’t there is no way I would have seen him without craning properly. The rear quarter shielded him from my view. Keep watching those mirrors boys and gals – remember the driving test, watch ’em every few seconds! “Take longer to look for bikes”.

Fuel
I have finally managed to get my average MPG up a bit as well. Its been sat at 28.5 for weeks (if not months) now, but after a period of fun driving, I’m delighted to announce that it has crept up to 28.6, but my average speed is sticking at 35mph despite lots of motorway driving (well, parking – its rush hour after all). Must drive faster then, eh!

And finally…
Happy red nose day everyone!! The bonnet made of aluminium on these bad boys, so it won’t stick to the front. As an alternative mine has got a red ass pimple, rather than a red nose. 🙂

Red Nose Day

Red Nose Day

Cayman Diaries: Winter update

The Cayman has been out and about quite a bit over the winter period and I’m pleased to say it is still behaving flawlessly (touching lots of wood!). However, it is definitely not friends in the ice and snow. Last Monday and Tuesday were really bad here with a good few inches of the fluffy stuff on the floor, and the estate not being gritted I decided to work from home and leave the Cayman to sleep, rounding up a full week of non-usage.

I have to admit, that getting back in after a week away rekindles the sports-car magic, and I can understand why some people prefer to keep their motors as weekend-only fun toys.

Here are a few pictures of my beastie in the snow.

Snowed in!
Snowed in!
Snowed in!
Snowed in!

On a recent visit to my flat I mistakenly parked in my car on the drive, which is on a slight decline….

Cayman in snow
Cayman in snow

2 hours later, upon leaving the Cayman decided that it wanted to stay where it was, and went absolutely nowhere. It just couldn’t get out of the fresh crunchy snow – the wheels just grinding it down to the ice below. So, shovel out and resigned to the fact that I’d be doing some digging…. clearing the entire courtyard (not a castle by the way  – its just a “court” street!!). Half an hour late for my appointment that evening. Whoops.

Being winter, there isn’t really much else to report – with both me and my other half hibernating like most of the population until the weather gets nicer. As soon as it does, we’ll be off on weekend trips in the car. So…no nice photos yet. Fingers crossed, I might get over the channel tunnel this year, and maybe brave some left-hand driving. Maybe.

Options List
Having owned the car now for 6 months, I thought I’d list a few of the options which are either on this car, or were on my old Boxster and decide if I’ve missed having them or not. So without further a-do, here is a list for your reading pleasure!

Heated Seats. I had these on the Boxster, but the drivers didn’t work and I didn’t care really. However – I’ve also got them on the Cayman and Lordie they are awesome!!! They also double up as a back-soother after a tough session at Tae Kwon Do, helping to sooth my lower back until I get home for a shower. I use them all the time. Would definitely spec them in another car with leather seats. Almost compulsory now!

Climate Control. This was in the Boxster, not in the Cayman, and I’ve not missed it at all. The Cayman has air-con which is plenty. With the climate control, I found I used the fan-speed buttons all the time anyway, so climate never really worked as it’s supposed to (I always found the fans were on too high). I wouldn’t spec this again in a car, if it had standard air-con.

Bose. Tough one this. Its in the Cayman, the Boxster had Sound+ . I think it’s growing on me – you can have it on Volume 1 and still hear it around town-driving, so perhaps good testament to its clarity. However, I don’t think it’s worth the money. Other than snobbery (and the fact that I’ve had it now and anything less would feel like a downgrade), I don’t think I’d part with the cash on a new-build. But I AM really pleased its on my car!

A convertible roof. In the past 6 months, I haven’t had a day yet where I’ve missed the convertibleness. Probably due to the weather being very damp and cold. This feeling could well change at the first sign of a nice day!

Next Up:
1) Wheels. I still fancy the Cayman 18s, but still really like my 17s, so I’m torn. Although my 17s do have big tyre walls, the design looks good on the car. I’m going to wait until I see some bargain ones before parting with my cash. Recession and all that.

2) A Good clean. A professional detail is planned for summer, to keep my paint looking oh-so-shiny! As it happens he now only lives a few miles from me, so that is good news indeed.

Cayman Diaries: Icey days…

I thought I’d give a quick winter-update. The verdict – Cayman no like icy! 

Slid and slipped and traction-controlled my way to the end of the courtyard yesterday, somewhat hair-raising as if it grabbed traction at any point I would have met the wall with an alarming speed-jerk! . Once onto the main side road was great fun though. It’s a small incline, lightly covered in that snowy-ice stuff. Picture the scene – a huge white covered side road, wide enough for a dual carriageway, low pavements, no parked cars or traffic. And me. With my tail-happy Cayman.

Oh yes… Just a gentle (and I mean gentle) push of the throttle and I was sliding all over the shop!     At one point I was driving up the hill sideways. Felt like the Stig in slow motion (about 3mph!  ). But hey it was fun.

On any other road however, that is – and would be – as scary a scary experience. Either I caught a particularly bad day, or I don’t recall the 986 being that bad.

This made me realise 3 things:

1) I love this car to bits and don’t want it to get bent during the winter months
2) I don’t want to risk someone else sliding into it either
3) So I’m considering buying a cheap run-around for the snowy days to protect my little baby!

Cayman Diaries: Update…

A short update to the Cayman running report. Not a lot to add though, with no news being great news!!

The Boxster is now sold so I’m back to just the one car again!

This Cayman is an awesome bit of kit – it really is great. I don’t know if its the colour or the shape, but it gets loads more attention than the Boxster. So far that’s just been a good thing! I deliberately chose a more subtle hue for the Boxster but red suits the Cayman so well I think. And I love bright coloured cars.

I’ve had some work done on the house lately, and all the tradesmen have commented on it – at length. Kids in the area absolutely love it, thumbs up and head turns a plenty – one lad the other day pointed and shouted “Wow, Porsche!!” with his mouth so wide I thought he was going to eat it!!  I’ve just been to the local tip, being a quiet day all the staff stared on, beaming with smiles asking what model is was and were looking around it. Happy days!

Driving the car is spot on – averaging 28.7mpg so far for all motorway and local journeys thus far. Despite being mainly motorways in terms of mileage, my average speed is still only 36mph!  The 2.7 engine is plenty for me, giving me lots of smiles whenever I put my foot down.

Cruise control is superb – and in our speed obsessed nation will do my licence the world of good. On quiet drives, or long motorway stretches in the late evening I can just hit the cruise button at the speed limit and happily let the cars computer drive for me.

My lady also prefers this car to the Boxster, finding it easier to drive and more comfortable than the 986. It definitely feels better well made than the 986 (although granted my 986 had done 96,000 miles and was nearly 8 years old!), but the 987 (“c”) feels more Audi-like inside, a bit more dependable. I hope!

A mate of mine was disappointed with the Boxster interior when I bought it 3 years ago. He wasn’t expecting much when I pulled up in the Cayman but he was completely blown away by the difference in terms of the interior and the extra oomph from the new 2.7 engines. It’s made him a big fan again!

Have to say though that I don’t think Bose is worth the money and I agree with others that it does sound a bit artificial. If I was buying new, I’d spec the middle option rather than the top spec Bose stuff, as the basic stereo does get a bit breathless with bass at higher volumes. Still, it was an added bonus, so can’t complain – and the surround sound can be switched off if you want.

That’s about it for now. Still got my eye on some Cayman S wheels, but with the current economic climate I’m keeping a bit of money in the bank now in case my job vanishes from under me.

The only downside is that today I’ve noticed Mr and Mrs Stone-chip have taken stage left on my front bumper. So a couple of big primer white teeth are now staring back at me every time I look at the front. Will have a think about how best to get them touched in.

That’s it for now – happy motoring!!

Cayman Diaries: The Porsche Cayman Diaries

I thought I’d start a running report on my new car, although I’m hoping there won’t be much to report other than servicing and pictures of various outings!.

Vital Stats:
Guards Red 2.7, 2006 56 Reg.
Just had minor service and all the other bits that Porsche require to put it on the forecourt as an approved used car (£1200!).
12 month warranty.
Extras include Bose, heated leather seats, Cruise control.

Photos
I still have my Boxster, so we took them both out for a few evening-shots at a local park. 🙂

Cayman and Boxster

Cayman and Boxster

Cayman and Boxster

Cayman and Boxster

Purchase
Purchased from Newcastle OPC (Official Porsche Centre) and I was very impressed with the service. The salesman (Andy) was very helpful and not at all pushy. Buying from a main Porsche dealer is certainly a great experience, albeit an expensive one!. Despite buying what was probably the cheapest car in the showroom, there was no hint of elitism and was treated with the same courtesy as everyone else. We agreed a price after several hours and off I went. The salesman also recommend a fantastic local pub for some dinner on our way home which both me and the lady thoroughly enjoyed before the long journey back home.

On collection, 1 week later I handed the forms and was taken to the car. I was shown all the documentation and how to operate all the functions of the car. I was asked to inspect the condition of the car and the valet and confirm that I was happy with the presentation of the vehicle.

“Porsche”
Whilst I was there, a guy came in with his son looking at the various cars. They spied a 996 near where I was sat and the lad was excitedly looking at it. One of the sales reps went over. I overheard the Dad saying to the salesman “I’m not a rich man, I don’t have lots of money to buy these but this is … fantastic. This would be it for me. I imagine everyone buying one of your cars just hands over a pile of money and on they go.”. The salesman told him that lots of different people buy Porsche’s and proceeded to show the man around the car and let his kid sit in it etc before they went on there way – child beaming from ear to ear.

On a reflective moment, this reminded me that owning a Porsche is indeed something very special, and many people really do aspire to own one. It was also a good example of the mystique of the marque in terms of affordability; the assumption being that Porsche = man with lots of cash. Quite the contrary in my case! I’m a regular chap with a regular job which pays quite well. I’m lucky enough to be able spend my disposable income on these great cars and felt very fortunate to be sat in the “deal signing” seat that day.

Free stuff
Here is a picture of the freebies I got on collection day (click on the picture for a bigger size)!

Cayman goodies

Cayman goodies

That’s a Porsche t-shirt, cap, 2x mugs, 2x tie pins, service books, spare key.

Driving Home
On the long journey home from Newcastle I had a grin attached to my face pretty much the whole way home. I was in my new car, the model I’d wanted and the purchase had been a great experience. Glancing in the rear view mirror I could see my Boxster following – piloted by my lovely lady. Does life get much better than this?! We overtook a 911 who was tootling along in the middle lane. As we passed him, he picked up the pace and joined our little convoy! For about 5 miles, we had a Porsche trail. Cayman, Boxster, 911 – all in different colours – quite a sight I’m sure!
We eventually pulled off our junction and the 911 overtook us, I glanced over and could see the occupants smiling. Great stuff!!

Futures
No costs as yet (hopefully that’s how it will stay!). Future plans are only for 18″ Cayman wheels when I get a few spare pennies. I quite like the 17″s though, so it won’t be an urgent change.
Also a trip to a professional car detailer next year to give it a good scrub.

Cayman and Boxster

Tails Up!

Initial thoughts
I love it!! The 987 seems much better screwed together than the 986, and the ergonomics of the driving position are much better for us tallies Everything fits perfectly, and I love the ambience of the white/cool blue lights at night-time.
Driving is fabulous – the engine/exhaust note is lurrrrrvely and the new 2.7 engines feel more open and responsive.

Very special place to be. Happy dappy doo!!! Could be a keeper this one if it behaves….