Porsche Taycan - An electric sports saloon
The Porsche Taycan is an all-electric saloon car with all of the sporty characteristics we have become accustomed to with the German automobile manufacturer. The Taycan was first unveiled as a concept car in 2015 and was called "Mission E" and garnered lots of interest thanks to its stunning looks which maintain the traditional Porsche styling.
In 2019 the Taycan was put into production with little difference to be noted against the concept model. It looks like a Porsche in every way, and the good news is that it drives as good as the petrol-powered models it will likely replace as the years go by. I was sceptical at first to believe Porsche could make an all-electric sports car which could be as impressive as the iconic 911, but I stand corrected they have achieved that and then some.
The Porsche Taycan enters a car market with limited competition, with its main rival coming in the form of the Tesla Model S. Porsche has nailed every department of the Taycan, from its exterior styling to its futuristic Starship Enterprise interior through to its power and performance. There are very few cars which can compete with the Taycan in a straight line sprint or its speed around corners.
There are three trim levels to choose from; the Taycan 4S, Taycan Turbo and the Taycan Turbo S. Each model, has the latest Porsche technology with various optional packages available to tailor to your driving needs.
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Engines, Power and Performance
Porsche has developed a new 800V electrical power system, which is around double what's usually used in EV models. There are two permanent magnet synchronous electric motors one on each axle, front and rear to power the four-wheel-drive system.
The entry-level Taycan 4S is available with a choice of either a Performance Battery or Performance Battery Plus. The standard performance battery has 435hp, which will climb to a maximum power output of 530hp and 640Nm of torque using the Overboost Launch function and is capable of hitting 0-62mph in 4secs.
If you opted for the Performance Plus battery, standard power increases to 490hp and using the boost function will give you 571hp and 650Nm of torque.
Both the turbo models come with the Performance Plus battery as standard, allowing for maximum power and performance. The Taycan Turbo comes with a standard 625hp, which will increase to 680hp and 850Nm of torque using the Launch function. It will rapidly hit 0-62mph in just 3.2secs and go on to a top speed of 161mph.
The Taycan Turbo S is the flagship model and comes with the same standard power as the Turbo (625hp), but when you use the Launch function power is upped to 761hp and a jaw-dropping 1050Nm of torque. Thanks to all this power the Turbo S will accelerate from 0-62mph in an amazing 2.8secs and will rocket to a top speed of 161mph. To emphasise just how quick this car is, it will take just 9.8secs for it to get from 0-124mph.
There are four driving modes to select from; Range, Normal, Sport and Sport Plus, with Range mode focussing on efficiency and Sport Plus on outright track performance with the other two somewhere in the middle.
Interior Quality and Technology
The Porsche Taycan has one of the finest interiors you will find in any all-electric car on the market today. Every inch of the newly made dashboard uses the finest materials with superb fit and finish with most buttons being replaced by digital screens and controls.
Every Taycan comes with three touchscreens as standard, which support the infotainment system, with an optional fourth and fifth screen available at an additional cost, There is a visually stunning 16.8-inch curved driver instrument display cluster featuring direct touch controls. There is also a 10.9-inch central touchscreen supporting the Audi, sat-nav and communication functions now called Porsche Communication Management (PCM). The final standard screen is an 8.4-inch colour touchscreen which allows access to sat-nav, media, Apple CarPlay and other various settings. It sits beneath the central 10.9-inch screen and blends in perfectly with the swooping design of the dashboard console.
The additional screens comprise of a 10.9-inch passenger display touchscreen, which allows access to the sat-nav, audio and other infotainment system features. The other screen is a 5.9-inch colour touchscreen, located in the rear, for passengers in the back seats. The touchscreen allows them to adjust the temperature, rear-seat heating and ventilation independently to those in the front.
The Porsche Taycan's interior comes in a choice of various coloured leather or non-leather finishes and a selection of optional decor and accent packages allowing you to personalise your Taycan even further. The seats are all supportive and comfortable, and the front seats benefit from a wide range of adjustment, allowing for all passengers to find a relaxing seating position.
Space, Practicality and Safety
The Porsche Taycan is deceptively spacious inside and offers a generous amount of space both in the front and in the rear along, with good storage compartments. Upfront there are acres of space, with more than enough legroom and headroom for just about any tall occupant. In the rear, passengers will find plentiful amounts of legroom and headroom which can easily cope with a couple of 6ft+ adults. Porsche do offer the option at an additional cost of fitting the Taycan with an additional middle seat (4+1 seating configuration).
There are two boot storage areas in the Taycan, the primary boot at the rear which as a maximum capacity of 407-litres and a front storage compartment with a capacity of 81-litres where the engine would typically be. Although the Porsche may not be quite as spacious as the Tesla Model S, it is still impressive given the amount of interior comfort, and luxury Porsche has provided.
The Taycan has not yet been safety tested by the chaps at Euro NCAP but given the levels of standard safety assists such as Active Bonnet System, Lane Keeping Assist with traffic sign recognition, multiple airbags and Brake and Collision Assist. There are various additional safety assists and features which can be added as optional extras, some of which are included in the higher-spec models.
The Porsche Taycan is an amazing piece of engineering and design. It's a beautiful car which has all the characteristics you would expect to find from a Porsche, with the added benefit of efficiency and is great for the environment while maintaining its racing pedigree with staggering performance figures. If I could afford one, I would most certainly be tempted.