Porsche Panamera 2014

September 11, 2013
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Porsche Panamera 2015

Porsche Panamera 2015

Fear not. Despite the hype surrounding Porsche’s new plug-in hybrid, the German maker has not forgotten how to build fast cars. The rest of the updated Porsche Panamera range may have been overshadowed by the revolutionary petrol-electric sedan, but the other models also came in for a comprehensive makeover.

Specifications:

Engine: V8
Horsepower @ RPM: 520 @ 6000
Torque @ RPM: 516
Displacement: 4.8 L
0-60 time: 3.9 sec.
Top Speed: 189 mph

All engines except the diesel have gained more power and there is a new twin-turbo V6 to replace the V8 in the Porsche Panamera S.

We’ve detailed the changes to the new Porsche Panamera in our plug-in hybrid review. But as a quick recap: the front and rear bumpers are new, as are the headlights, tail-lights and tailgate.

The prices are the same as before: the price wasn’t reduced along with the rest of the range because Porsche Australia negotiated a price freeze instead of a copping a price rise from Germany. Well, that’s the official line.

We sampled the top three performance models in the new line-up, all of which are due to arrive locally in July. The V6 petrol and V6 diesel models should be here in September.

Porsche Panamera S

As is the case with most super luxury sedans, the 4.8-litre V8 has made way for a twin turbo 3.0-litre V6 in the latest version of the Porsche Panamera S. Despite the smaller capacity engine, it pumps out 15 extra kilowatts of power and 20 extra newton metres of torque than the V8.

Even though the engine is smaller the car itself is actually 15kg heavier than before, because of the extra turbocharger hardware. The net result is the same performance as before, even if the twin turbo V6 is a quiet achiever. There is a slight delay in power delivery while the turbos spool up but once the pressure builds it fires like a slingshot.

Power delivery through the gears is relatively seamless. The only criticism is that the engine lacks any aural character. Porsche engines always have a distinctive note. This one does not: the induction sounds of air being sucked through a plastic pipe are evident. Apparently there is a sports exhaust that addresses these concerns but we weren’t able to sample it on this occasion.

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Porsche Panamera 2015

Porsche Panamera Turbo

This is still the big daddy of the Porsche Panamera line-up. Floor the throttle and the scenery becomes a blur. Power output has been given a minor tweak but for me the biggest improvement to the Panamera Turbo is to the suspension.

Porsche engineers have benefited from getting to know the big two-tonne sedan over the past four years. Contrary to perception, the Porsche Panamera Turbo is more of a luxury cruiser than sports sedan.

The ride and handling compromise is Mercedes-Benz-esque, but I reckon Porsche could affirm to tighten the responses a little. But make no mistake, the Porsche Panamera Turbo can cover the most ground in the least amount of time in the most amount of comfort.

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Porsche Panamera 2015

Porsche Panamera GTS

Disclaimer: I’ve generally not been much of a fan of Porsche GTS models. To me they’ve simply been an exercise in adding some turbo visual cues and giving the V8 a little more power.

Porsche Panamera 2015 interior

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But the GTS has gone to finishing school with the new Panamera model. Porsche had liberated enough power for it to really feel quite rapid now. And the chassis is superb. It is by far the most balanced, nicest to drive of all the Panamera models.

Porsche Panamera 2015 interior

My cynicism has been crushed on this occasion. The Panamera GTS is a bit special. I just wish Porsche could bring some of the GTS chassis panache to the Panamera Turbo model. Then we truly would have the world’s best sedan. In the meantime, the Porsche Panamera GTS is a damn good consolation prize.

Porsche Panamera 2015 engine

Porsche Panamera S

Price: $287,100
Engine: Twin turbo 3.0-litre V6
Power: 309kW and 520Nm
Transmission: Seven-speed twin clutch PDK
Consumption: 8.7L/100km
0 to 100km/h: 5.1 seconds
Top speed: 287km/h

Porsche Panamera Turbo

Price: $382,400
Engine: Twin turbo 4.8-litre V8
Power: 382kW and 700Nm
Transmission: Seven-speed PDK
Consumption: 10.2L/100km
0 to 100km/h: 4.1 seconds
Top speed: 305km/h

Porsche Panamera GTS

Price: $318,300
Engine: 4.8-litre V8
Power: 324kW and 520Nm
Transmission: Seven-speed PDK
Consumption: 10.7L/100km
0 to 100km/h: 4.4 seconds
Top speed: 288km/h

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Porsche Panamera 2014 rival
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Porsche Panamera 2014 rival with a brand new Toyota Camry 3.5L V6 268hp engine for only US$20,000.
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