The Taycan is the German performance car maker’s first fully electric car. It’s available in a four-door sports saloon guise or two estate body shapes – called the Taycan 4S Cross Turismo and Taycan Sport Turismo.
We headed to Yorkshire for a drive in the Taycan 4S Cross Turismo. With extra ground clearance, adjustable-height suspension and four-wheel drive, Porsche bills the car as being suitable for a bit of light off-roading. There’s even an off-road pack on the options list.
Prices start at £88,270 for the Taycan 4S Cross Turismo, which generates 483bhp from two electric motors. An overboost mode generates an extra 80bhp for short periods and brings up 0-62mph in just 4.1 seconds.
Want to go faster? Then for £140,000 you can have the Taycan Sports Turismo Turbo S. This beast generates a maximum of 750bhp and dispatches the 0-62mph sprint in a supercar-beating 2.9 seconds.
Having driven the “standard” Taycan Sports Turismo I can’t imagine wanting or needing more power.
Nought to 62mph comes up in 4.1 seconds, 0-99mph takes just 8.6 seconds, and in 13 seconds dead you’ll be going at 124mph (or 200kph in new money).
What’s more, power delivery is instantaneous. There’s no waiting on revs to build or a turbocharger to kick in. The moment you press the accelerator you begin hurtling forward.
That’s tremendous but it’s nothing unusual. A lot of electric cars are fast. What is unusual is how well the car handles. The sheer weight of electric cars – all those batteries are heavy – makes them cumbersome beasts. So while their straight line speed may be phenomenal, approach a corner and you have to slow right down.
Not so with the Taycan. Somehow Porsche’s engineers have come up with an electric car that’s serious fun to throw round bends. It turns into corners sharply, grips like crazy and remains flat and poised throughout. Various drive modes let you fine tune suspension and throttle settings.
With a 93.4kWh battery the Taycan is good for 277 miles, according to official figures. Of course how you drive will affect range considerably. Tootle around town and you’ll clear well over 300 miles before needing to plug in. Explore the car’s impressive performance envelope and watch that battery level plummet.
It accepts charging at up to 270kW so if you can find a point fast enough an 80% top up takes little more than 20 minutes.
The Taycan 4S Cross Turismo also scores well when it comes to comfort. Sitting at 60mph on a long stretch of empty Yorkshire road, wind noise was completely absent. There was, of course, no engine noise either. The muted thrum of tyres on tarmac was the only sound that indicated we were in motion.
The extra 20mm of ground clearance – 30mm with the optional off road package – over the standard Taycan makes ride quality even more comfortable, allowing the adaptive air suspension to iron out bumps, potholes and all the other imperfections in Britain’s pockmarked roads.
The Taycan 4S Cross Turismo scores well for practicality too. The rear seats are suitable for adults and boot space is good at 446 litres. Drop the rear seats and there’s 1,200 litres to play with. There’s also a ‘frunk’ storage space under the bonnet, where you can stash 84 litres’ worth of gear.
The well designed cabin feels of the highest quality. Three screens – one behind the steering wheel and two in the dashboard – are responsive and easy to read and use. The driver can customise the screen behind the wheel to their preference.
As is the case with all touchscreens, they’re great to operate when stationary but old fashioned dials and buttons are much easier to use without taking your eyes off the road.
With the Taycan 4S Cross Turismo Porsche has come up with one of the most impressive electric cars to date. It’s fast. It’s fun. It’s practical and luxurious. Range is good. It will even manage a bit of (very light) off-roading.
You can spend nearly half as much again on range topping versions but the entry level model offers all you need and more.
Porsche Taycan 4S Cross Turismo
Price: £88,270 (£102,961 as tested); Motor: Two permanent magnetic synchronous motors; Battery: 80.7kWh; Power: 483bhp (563bhp on overboost); Torque: 479lb ft; Transmission: Two-speed automatic, all-wheel-drive; Top speed: 149mph; 0-62mph: 4.1 seconds; WLTP range: 277 miles; Consumption: 2.3-2.7miles/kWh; Charging: Up to 270kW