The all-electric Porsche Taycan has arrived

04th September 2019
Bob Murray

We’ve seen it, sat in it and driven the prototype, and now the first all-electric Porsche is finally here. So any surprises? You have to admire a big four-door that, from some angles, looks more like a 911 than some 911s, while calling the two models Turbo and Turbo S – when the car doesn’t even have an exhaust pipe – is surely genius.


So, hello then Porsche Taycan. After 70 years of high performance excitement derived from internal combustion works of art, we have a Porsche powered by two electric motors. As expected, though, Porsche is making the electric drivetrain its own with an 800-volt system, clever “hairpin” windings on the stator coils, and a pulse inverter and two-speed transmission all in one compact drive module.

If all these things seem strange now then in time they will surely become as familiar as Mezger horizontally-opposed engines, K-Jetronic and sodium-cooled exhaust valves are to a generation of Porsche fans now. Maybe, anyway.


One thing that is already familiar: the level of performance on offer. No question about it, that’s pure Porsche. The Taycan Turbo has 680PS (671bhp) and gets from 0-62mph in 3.2 seconds. The Turbo S boasts 761PS (751bhp) and sees off 0-62 in 2.8 seconds. So in the 0-62 test at least, about as quick as the 911 GT3 RS. Not bad for a large four-door, five-seat, all-wheel-drive saloon. 

Accessing this level of acceleration requires both launch control and that innovative two-speed transmission installed on the rear axle. First gear prioritises acceleration from a standing start, while the longer second gear ensures high efficiency for cruising, right up to the Taycan’s top speed of 161mph.


And in the corners? Andrew Frankel has already given us a taste of what we can expect there, and it’s all good. The secret is a centrally-networked control system that synchronizes all chassis systems in real time. So a mother hen for all those Porsche acronyms that stand for things like the adaptive air suspension, electronic damper control, electromechanical roll stabilization system and torque vectoring.

The Taycan offers the driver multiple driving modes following the same philosophy as other Porsche models, up to Sport+, plus a new Range mode to maximise efficiency. Efficiency is aided by what Porsche says is a unique recuperation system, able to harvest up to 265kW (355bhp) of otherwise wasted energy. It is said that in tests Taycans have shown that around 90 per cent of everyday braking can be performed by the electric motors alone.


So how far will a Taycan take you? The official range numbers (according to the new WLTP protocol) are 279 miles for the Turbo, and 257 miles for the Turbo S. Whatever the reality, when you do need a top-up it promises to be pretty quick, partly thanks to that 800-volt system.

With typical Porsche precision, the firm says a fast-charge top-up with 270 kW of direct current (DC) power can provide an 80 per cent boost in 22.5 minutes. You can plug it in to an AC supply at home as well of course, for an overnight top up. The battery’s capacity is 93.4 kWh, so not the biggest around but right up there.


The Taycan’s reveal is just the start of Porsche’s €6 billion journey into electric cars. Less powerful variants of the Taycan, still with motors back and front and all-wheel-drive, will follow this year promises Porsche, while the five-door sporting estate Taycan Cross Turismo is due at the end of 2020. That should add extra practicality to the saloon whose luggage arrangements are limited to an 81 litre boot up front and 366 litre space at the back.

For Porsche chairman Oliver Blume the Taycan marks the start of a new era for Porsche. “The Taycan links our heritage to the future. It carries forward the success story of our brand – a brand that has fascinated and thrilled people the world over for more than 70 years.”

You can be part of Porsche’s new era in return for £115,858 for the Taycan Turbo or £138,826 for the Turbo S. Order one now and you could get it in January...

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