The Porsche Taycan is the electric four-door saloon that thinks it’s a sports car. We had an inkling that the first all-electric Porsche would be good, but we had no idea it would be this good.
This is a vehicle that shows how much fun a plug-in future can be. It’s a car with a realistic electric range, a delightful interior and the handling characteristics of a lightweight sports car. It’s not cheap, but anyone fortunate enough to take the plunge will enjoy a truly revolutionary electric car.
Porsche has drawn a line in the sand with the Taycan. Its electric car takes the fight to the Tesla Model S and gives the Americans a bloody nose. The Germans have won this battle – and there’s no need for it to go to penalties.
About the Porsche Taycan
Eight years after the launch of the Tesla Model S, Porsche responded with what feels like a turning point for the electric car sector. It was worth the wait. We don’t say this lightly: the Porsche Taycan is a genuine game-changer.
Making its debut at the 2019 Frankfurt Motor Show, the Taycan is the first all-electric car Porsche has produced. The four-door saloon has the look of a coupe and is built on a new battery-electric platform that’ll be used to underpin a number of all-electric cars from the Volkswagen Group (Porsche’s owner), including the Audi e-Tron GT.
The Taycan is roughly the same size as the Porsche Panamera, but it’s not quite as practical as its conventional sibling. It’s also significantly heavier, weighing in at a lardy 2.2 tonnes. Despite this, it feels as agile and playful as a Porsche 911, with the performance to rival any supercar at any price.
Car group tests
On the subject of price, the Taycan isn’t a cheap car. Porsche is investing around six billion euros on electromobility over the next couple of years – the Taycan is its first opportunity to recoup some of this outlay.
How much is the Porsche Taycan? The entry-level model is just shy of £73,000, while the Taycan 4S costs £84,000. Upgrading to the GTS model means you’ll just tip over the £100k barrier, while the Turbo is £117,000. At the top of the range, the flagship Turbo S commands a price tag of £139,000. Beware of the options list, though, as there is a range of costly extras to choose from.
So which Porsche Taycan should you buy? The base model is certainly not your typical entry-level model, while the entry-level 4S is as remarkable as its more powerful Turbo and Turbo S stablemates, especially if you opt for the 93.4kWh battery from the more expensive models. It makes the Turbo models feel like pure one-upmanship rather than necessity.
Specify the Taycan with the Performance Battery Plus option and you’ll benefit from an official 301 miles on offer. Chuck lower winter temperatures into the equation and a range of 220 miles between charges is likely – still impressive given the performance and weight of the car.
It’s brilliant to drive. The Taycan hides its bulk remarkably well, tackling B-road corners like a 911, yet feeling as refined and comfortable as a Panamera over long distances. You’re also treated to one of the most tech-laden and impressive interiors this side of a luxury saloon.
Opt for one of the Turbo models or a Performance Battery Plus version and you get a super-fast, 800V, 270kW peak charging rate. Once the charging network has caught up, this promises to make the Taycan no less usable than a 911.
Buyers looking for a little more practicality might be drawn to the estate body style of the Taycan Cross Turismo. In contrast to the Taycan saloon, the Cross Turismo offers more of a shooting brake design, with a hatchback that provides a 446-litre boot. There’s an 84-litre storage compartment in the front for charging cables, too. Porsche has also introduced the Sport Turismo body style which sits between the standard car and the Cross model in terms of size.
The Taycan saloon isn’t perfect, with a smaller 366-litre boot, some features that should be free on a car of this price, and a sloping roofline limiting the space in the back. However, none of this detracts from what is one of the best four-door sports cars you can buy, regardless of the powertrain. This is a remarkable car.