The following article was produced in partnership with Porsche Cars Australia.
When Porsche unveiled its Mission E concept car back in 2015, it immediately caused a stir. The idea that one of the world’s most pure, focused performance car manufacturers would make an electric vehicle seemed wild; almost unbelievable.
But when the Porsche Taycan first hit Australian shores earlier this year, the dream became a reality. And the reality is very, very exciting indeed. Here it was: Porsche’s very first production electric car. And what a car…
The Porsche Taycan is the newest edition to Porsche’s stable of performance cars: a four-door low-slung speedster that sits somewhere between a 911 and Panamera. It’s immediately recognisable thanks to its dramatic ‘floating’ headlights, low stance, and of course, absence of tailpipe. It’s beautiful, sure, but what’s it like to drive? Glad you asked.
Let’s not mince our words here: the Porsche Taycan is an epoch-defining vehicle. The Taycan isn’t just the world’s first true performance EV, but it’s perhaps the most exciting car to ever come out of Germany since the original 911 back in 1964. It’s just that good.
First and foremost, the Taycan is a performance car – you’d expect nothing less from Porsche. Anyone even passingly familiar with cars knows that the performance case for EVs is just as compelling as the environmental one: the effortless acceleration, hefty torque and impressive stopping power EVs are inherently capable of lend themselves well to performance applications. Hence why Porsche were keen to invest in electric drivetrains.
The Taycan range encompasses seven models, across two main variants: the standard Taycan sedan and the Taycan Cross Turismo crossover, which not only has a shooting brake-esque rear end but boasts a slightly higher ride height, additional body cladding and rugged black trim. The base Taycan is rear-wheel drive, while the three higher model grades – plus all three Cross Turismo models – are all-wheel drive.
Even the base RWD Taycan is impressively fast, but the all-wheel drive sedan models are mind-numbingly quick. At the pointy end, the Taycan Turbo S accelerates from 0-100km/h in 2.8 seconds. That means it’s among the fastest vehicles in the world, up there with monsters like the Bugatti Chiron, Lamborghini Huracán Performante or Porsche’s very own 911 GT2 RS.
That’s to say nothing of the classically Porsche, impeccable handling that would embarrass even a Mercedes-AMG GT S that every version of the Taycan is capable of…
But the Taycan is much, much more practical than any of those cars we’ve previously mentioned. It’s got four doors, and can seat four adults without having to break their femurs to get them to fit in the back.
It’s packed with clever features, like its on-the-fly adjustable suspension which can be raised so you can clear bumps around town – and even remembers locations where you do this so you don’t have to stress about it. Oh, and it’s a Porsche, so it’s totally bulletproof. No exotic Italian mechanical gremlins here.
The Taycan Cross Turismo is even more practical – it’s the world’s first electric station wagon. Need we say more? That alone should sell you on it…
The Taycan has all the mod cons you’d expect from a high-end luxury car, acres of sumptuous leather, and a segment-beating infotainment system with three configurable screens that are far more intuitive to use than virtually any other supercar (or Tesla’s) systems.
Needless to say, it’s also much better for the planet than virtually any other car on the road – super or otherwise – as it doesn’t need to gulp down gallons of petrol to get around or beat speed records. With a range of 365 to 437km, it’s capable of laying down long road trips with ease, and with fast charging, the battery pack can be charged from 5% to 80% in as few as 22.5 minutes.
Indeed, the really deceptive thing about the Taycan is despite its supercar looks and performance, it’s really rather lovely to drive. It’s comfortable, polite and surprisingly unfussy. It’s quiet, too – but by no means boring. When you put your foot down, the spaceship-like whirr and mind-numbing speed it generates is addictively fun.
Like all of Porsche’s vehicles, the Taycan also benefits from Porsche’s ground-breaking Exclusive Manufaktur customisation experience, which gives customers virtually free reign over the car’s appearance. From interior accents to customised wheels (you can even option Taycans with the same body-coloured rims the Mission E concept car rocked) – with over 700 additional options available to customers across all model lines, the sky’s the limit.
In many ways, the Taycan is a concept car made real. Often, when vehicles make their way into production from a concept car, they lose much of the spark and flair that made the concept so exciting in the first place. They’re forced to compromise.
The Taycan, however, doesn’t compromise – on anything. It’s a world-class performance car, in the spirit of Porsche’s most famous petrol-powered offerings. It’s luxurious and practical, with segment-leading infotainment and ergonomics. It even looks like a concept car – they stayed remarkably true to the Mission E concept. Oh, and it does this all while being better for the planet than an internal combustion engined-car, meaning you don’t even have to feel guilty about it.
Would it be going too far to say it’s the perfect car? We’re not sure. Looks like you’re just going to have to find out for yourself.