It's hard to believe the Porsche Boxster turned 25 this year, though you could say the car is even older than that if you count back to the original Boxster concept (shown below) Porsche rolled out at the 1993 North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

To give an overview of how far the Boxster has come since the original model, Jay Leno took a close look at both the first generation and the newest version for the latest episode of his online series, “Jay Leno's Garage.” The newest version is the special 718 Boxster 25 edition that Porsche unveiled at the start of the year.

We'll remind you that the special edition, which Porsche limited to just 1,250 units worldwide, features a number cues that recall the old Boxster concept. Among those cues are the Neodyme copper color used on the front and side air intakes, GT Silver Metallic used for the body, and two-tone, five-spoke alloy wheels.

Porsche Boxster concept and 2021 Porsche 718 Boxster 25

Porsche Boxster concept and 2021 Porsche 718 Boxster 25

Interestingly, the same designer, in this case Porsche veteran Grant Larson, worked on the design of the Boxster concept and original Boxster, as well as the latest 718 Boxster 25. Larson is currently responsible for special models at Porsche, hence his work on the 25th anniversary special.

What wasn't mentioned in the video was how the Boxster helped save Porsche from real financial hardship. In the early 1990s, Porsche was struggling due to its reliance on the 911. Sales in 1993, the year the Boxster concept was unveiled, reached just 3,713 units in the United States.

Fortunately, the Boxster concept was a huge hit and Porsche knew it had to get production going quickly and profitably. Help came from former Toyota executives who were hired as consultants. They moved the brand away from archaic manufacturing processes and introduced a little bit of "just in time" manufacturing. The result? The Boxster's cost was halved and so was the production time. The profits generated were then used to develop Porsche's real moneymaker: the Cayenne.