Designed as a genuine sports car for four passengers, the Porsche Panamera range has proliferated much like the 911 with a trim configuration present to suit any buyer’s desires. There are 14 variants available, ranging from green (S E-Hybrid plug-in), to super-fast (Turbo S), to enthusiast (GTS), to chauffeur of extra-tall business folks (long-wheelbase Executive) – and everything in between.
Really, there’s nothing quite like the Panamera on sale today. It’s longer and more spacious than four-door coupes like the Benz CLS and BMW 6 Series Gran Coupe, yet it’s more sport-oriented and cozy on the inside than the likes of the Audi A8 or Lexus LS. Furthermore, its 911-inspired styling and fastback body style set it apart from any of its rivals, Tesla Model S and Audi A7/S7/RS 7 aside. The Panamera is available in regular wheelbase, with select trims offered in an extended-wheelbase Executive trim (4S, Turbo, and Turbo S).
There is one new addition to the Panamera range – the Edition edition (yes, you read that correct). Based on either the standard Panamera or the Panamera 4, it adds more standard equipment (Premium Package, Bose audio system, adaptive dampers, speed-sensitive power steering, 14-way power seats, adaptive headlamps, and a reverse camera), plus distinctive Turbo II wheels, gloss black exterior trim, and a beige-and-black interior colour scheme. Also new this year is a dual rear-seat entertainment system, which features a pair of 10.1-inch TFT displays that can be fitted with WLAN wireless routers for wireless content streaming.
Though the Panamera may share its dashboard and transmission console design with the 911, it’s considerably more spacious and comfort-oriented. Materials and fit and finish are peerless; assembly is meticulous. Rear quarters are surprisingly spacious. The fastback body style offers up enough head and leg-room for a six-foot adult to ride comfortably. Equipment levels are generous, but be warned that a lot of expected content will cost you – a reverse camera, proximity key with push-button start, for instance are not standard. Meanwhile, every conceivable luxury option from a built-in fridge to power-operated heated and ventilated rear seats can be configured.
The Panamera and its all-wheel drive Panamera 4 variant are powered by a 3.6-litre direct-injection V6 that develops 310 hp and 295 lb-ft of torque. It’s paired to a seven-speed dual-clutch (PDK) automated transmission, which is shared with all Panameras other than the S E-Hybrid.
The S, 4S, 4S Executive, and GTS all use a 3.6-litre twin-turbo V6. In the first three, power is rated at 420 hp and 384 lb-ft, while the GTS’ upgraded mill makes 440 hp and the same 384 lb-ft. The S is rear-wheel drive, while all others are all-wheel drive.
The S E-Hybrid features an Audi-sourced 3.0-litre supercharged V6 that when combined with its plug-in hybrid system, produces 416 hp and 435 lb-ft of torque. With a 0-100 km/h time of 5.5 seconds, it’s one of the quickest plug-in hybrids around, although its combined efficiency of 4.6 Le/100 km (litre equivalents) trails most plug-ins on the market. The S E-Hybrid uses a conventional eight-speed automatic, and is only available with rear-wheel drive.
Well-heeled customers who like their luxury with a dose of sheer speed may find the Turbo and Turbo S range of interest. Available in standard or extended-wheelbase forms, they also include standard all-wheel drive. The Turbo gets a 4.8-litre twin-turbo V8 with 520 hp and 516 lb-ft of torque. The Turbo S makes a whopping 50 hp more for a total output of 570 hp; torque peaks at 590 lb-ft on overboost. This is by far the quickest variant of the family, taking as little as 3.8 seconds to accelerate to 100 km/h.
The Panamera starts at $89,500, making it more affordable than all of its rivals other than the Audi A8. Yes, it’s less expensive than the Lexus LS or Jaguar XJ, though this price does not include any options. On the other end of the spectrum, one won’t receive much change from a Turbo S Executive; its asking price is $229,100.
This vehicle has not yet been reviewed
No content available