You’ve got the car you take to the Bridgehampton Tennis & Surf Club. To grab perfectly prepared foods and produce from Round Swamp Farm. To pick up friends at the airport. Nothing against it, but the cars below are, well, not that car. These machines celebrate the road to nowhere—as long as “nowhere” is a winding two-laner that’s short on traffic lights and long on roadside lobster shacks. Herewith, our favorite summer vehicles that can take you from a sun-drenched morning jaunt to Montauk to your favorite twilight dinner stop without missing a beat.
PORSCHE 718 BOXSTER S
This two-seater looks like it’ll go airborne at any second. And that’s just while it’s sitting in a parking lot. You’re undoubtedly familiar with the body style, but this year’s subtle refresh borrows a bit from the classic 911, as it’s wider and sits lower.
NUMBER TO KNOW: Twenty. That’s how many years the Boxster has been around. But to mark the anniversary, Porsche looks back even further with this model, paying tribute to the original mid-engine, flat four-cylinder 718s that won races in the 1950s and ’60s.
CONVERSATION STARTER: A manual six-speed gearbox comes standard, so you’d better keep two hands free.
CONVERSATION STOPPER: The optional Doppelkupplungsgetriebe, otherwise known as a dual clutch formerly available only in race cars. Porsche says it offers “virtual gears” that save on fuel consumption by providing micro-adjustments between gears. Maybe, but it certainly requires virtual pronunciation.
YOU’LL IMPRESS: Whoever’s lucky enough to ride in the passenger seat. The new turbocharged engine cranks out 35 more ponies than previous Boxsters and propels the car from zero to 60 in four seconds—half a second faster than before.
Porsche of Southampton, 705 County Road 39A, Southampton, 283-0888
Sure, this is a roomy luxury car packed with futuristic tech. But don’t underestimate it. It’ll hit 60 miles per hour in just over four seconds.
NUMBER TO KNOW: Fifteen thousand. That’s the number of tiny etchings in the glass of the sunroof, embedded with LEDs that team up to provide ambient mood lighting—in case the sun isn’t shining.
CONVERSATION STARTER: An intelligent key that does the expected (finding, starting, and heating your car remotely) as well as the unexpected (parking your car remotely while you watch from your window-seat table at Pierre’s).
CONVERSATION STOPPER: A form of sign language that only you and the car are in on. It’s called gesture control, and it uses motion sensors in the center console to let you adjust the audio volume, answer phone calls, and start navigation by just waving your hand or pointing your finger.
YOU’LL IMPRESS: Anyone sitting in the back seat, up to and including your in-laws. The optional Rear Executive Lounge package bestows upon them a footrest, a tray table, exercise and massage functions in the seats, a 1,400-watt surround-sound system, and a dedicated seven-inch touchscreen. Flight attendant not included.
BMW of Southampton, 759 County Road 39A, Southampton, 877-885-1388
JAGUAR F-TYPE 400 SPORT
An upgrade to Jaguar’s already enviable line of F-Type roadsters, this head-turning version cranks out 400 horsepower on an all-aluminum chassis.
NUMBER TO KNOW: One. That’s how many years they’re making this two-seater. And once they’re gone…
CONVERSATION STARTER: The one-time-only detailing on this model, such as contrast stitching in the leather seats, metallic paint, and 20-inch alloy wheels with contrasting brake calipers.
CONVERSATION STOPPER: The throaty growl of the engine when you downshift to pass. Or just rev the engine for fun in your parking space. Heck, you may even start using phrases like “throaty growl” in conversation.
YOU’LL IMPRESS: Everyone on social media. A first-ofits- kind app called ReRun, developed with GoPro, lets you shoot real-time video, which is instantly uploadable, while you drive by the dunes in Amagansett. It also collects critical data on speed, acceleration, and steering, if you’d like to judge your improvement on the track. Or, we suppose, your driveway.
Jaguar of Great Neck, 732 Northern Blvd., Great Neck, 877-436-3241
AUDI S5 SPORTBACK
Is a five-door coupe a contradiction in terms? Maybe, but you’ll let it go once you see the body style, borrowed from the sculpted look of the A7.
NUMBER TO KNOW: Five. That’s how many doors you’ll find, including the rear hatch. It’s also how many adults can sit comfortably inside. Not bad for a car with an eight-speed turbocharged engine that’ll get you from zero to 60 in 4.5 seconds.
CONVERSATION STARTER: A limited production run means Audi is making only 3,500 of them this year.
CONVERSATION STOPPER: The “virtual cockpit,” which makes the driver’s seat feel something like the seat of a flight simulator. A heads-up display on the windshield works with the fully digital instrument cluster, which pulls from Google Earth and Google Street View.
YOU’LL IMPRESS: The valet at The Palm, once he gets a load of the Traffic Jam Assist feature, which provides a helping hand with acceleration, braking, and steering in congested conditions. Like dinner hour in East Hampton.
Audi Southampton, 51 Montauk Hwy., Southampton, 877-267-2098
MASERATI GRANTURISMO CONVERTIBLE SPECIAL EDITION
This ferocious-looking four-seater commemorates the 60th anniversary of Maserati’s first grand touring car in 1957. That year also saw a red Maserati 250F win the Formula One championship—the vehicle that inspired the optional three-layer red paint job of this year’s model.
NUMBER TO KNOW: Twenty-eight. That’s how many seconds it takes the roof to retract. And for you to scan your music library for a Van Halen song while cruising Montauk Highway.
CONVERSATION STARTER: The 460-horsepower V-8 made by Ferrari will do 185 mph and get you to 60 in 4.6 seconds. Switch it to sport mode and the exhaust valves open for some extra roar—especially with the top down.
CONVERSATION STOPPER: Taking a tight, fast corner. The Poltrona Frau leather seats are ergonomically designed for maximum support when you’re pulling some extra Gs.
YOU’LL IMPRESS: Yourself. Mainly because you’ll be one of only 400 people in the world to own one. Park it at the marina in Sag Harbor, where voyeurism is encouraged—the yachts and cars are equally lust-worthy.
Ferrari-Maserati of Long Island, 65 S. Service Road, Plainview, 516-726-1923