Report: Porsche Boxster to get four-cylinder engine in 2011

Porsche will give its Boxster range a new entry-level powerplant for the 2011 model year, according to a U.K. media report. Insiders say a new four-cylinder Boxster will be he "most economical Porsche ever." Economical in price -- but also in terms of fuel economy.

The new engine will arrive as part of the redesigned Boxster lineup. The revamped sports car is said to be "significantly" lighter than the existing models. The turbocharged four-banger will deliver over 200 horsepower, informants to Britain's Autocar magazine claim.

The Cayman coupe will also likely receive a four-cylinder model, but timing will depend on when the next-generation Cayman is launched.

It's not known how this latest information ties in with rumors about a revived Porsche 914 positioned below the Boxster and Cayman. It's possible that model is also in the works, or perhaps the four-cylinder Boxster will fill that niche.

Thomas Krickelberg, Porsche's head of powertrains, recently admitted the six-cylinder Boxer engine was designed to have cylinders removed if the need ever existed.

"[There are] the discussions about global warming and the need to reduce fuel consumption," Krickelberg told Drive. "The target was to have a six-cylinder because that is the criteria of the 911 and the Boxster. But there is still the option to reduce the number of cylinders."

The result of lopping off two cylinders would be a Boxer four displacing about 2.4L.