Why is my Porsche Boxster hesitant when accelerating?

Mass airflow (MAF) sensor issues are not uncommon on 986 and 987 Boxsters, limiting the quantity of fuel delivered to the engine and causing a loss of power. The problem sometimes triggers a ‘check engine’ light, but not in every case.

The first thing to check is whether the MAF’s performance is being affected by oil or dirt on the sensor, in which case cleaning it should solve the problem. Another possibility is that an air leak is affecting the sensor’s reading, so it is worth examining the condition of the hoses before taking more drastic action.

If the problem is with the MAF sensor itself, it will need to be replaced. This is a relatively simple job, but you will need to check you have the right parts, as a number of different sensors were used during the lifetime of the 986 and 987. Using a Porsche specialist to do the work will ensure the correct part is selected.

One other possible cause for the hesitation is a damaged fuel pump, although you will probably also be able to hear the pump struggling if this is the case. Should this be the root cause of the problem, the fuel pump will need to be replaced.

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