Cars > Electric

Porsche (finally) launches the Taycan electric sports car

The German automaker's solution to the eco-conscious gearhead

The Taycan takes Porsche towards a carbon-neutral future. PHOTO FROM PORSCHE

Technically, the Taycan has been available in the Philippines since early 2020. But thanks to the COVID-19 outbreak, Porsche didn’t get a chance to give the vehicle a formal and proper introduction to market. This time though, the covers have officially been taken off, and we can finally say our oohs and aahs and wax glossy lyric over the electric sports car from Zuffenhausen.

The styling is inspired by the 911 and the Panamera. PHOTO FROM PORSCHE

The profile is unmistakably 911-ish with the headlights nestled on a flat hood. The sloping fastback roofline is another Porsche sports car trademark, and the rear LED light bar, which emphasizes the Taycan’s long and wide girth, is standard equipment on the latest 992-generation 911. The Porsche name is etched and encased in a plastic cover which gives it a 3D-effect, mimicking that of the iconic sports car. The drag coefficient of 0.22 is one of the lowest on a car in serial production.

Size-wise, it slots underneath the Panamera, being a more compact four-door coupe rather than an executive luxury limousine. But the Taycan is far from just a cheap styling exercise paying lip services to German and EU regulations following the wake of the Dieselgate scandal. Porsche claims that the Taycan’s factory and production process are carbon neutral.

The center of gravity is said to be lower than that of Porsche's track-focused models. PHOTO FROM PORSCHE

Underneath the skin, the Taycan uses what Porsche claims to be the world’s first 800V electrical system for an EV in series production. This endows the Taycan’s battery with a superior 93.4kWh capacity. Plugging the vehicle into specialized 270kW fast chargers can recharge the batteries from 5% to 80% capacity in under 23 minutes. The network of charging stations is growing globally such that Porsche is confident that anyone can soon drive a Taycan anywhere and not have to worry about charging. For Taycan owners, a Porsche-supplied home charger provides 9.6kW of juice on alternating current (AC), allowing you to charge your Taycan from 5% to 80% capacity in eight hours. And just like true engineering geeks, Porsche promises that its regenerative braking system is so efficient that at normal driving conditions, you can regain back as much as 30% of the energy spent. In its most efficient driving mode, Porsche promises a maximum range of 463km.

The 'Turbo S' moniker doesn't signify turbocharging. It just means really, really fast. PHOTOS FROM PORSCHE

There are three variants initially available: the Taycan 4S, Taycan Turbo and Taycan Turbo S. The range topping Turbo S delivers a whooping 750hp in launch control mode, allowing it to hit the century mark in 2.8 seconds. All Taycans are all-wheel drive thanks to a pair of high-power electric motors driving the front and rear axles independently. The Taycan also promises a lower center of gravity than the flagship 911 GT3 and GT2 RS track-biased sports cars thanks to the placement of the batteries and electric motors. The Taycan is also blessed with a 49:51 front-to-rear weight distribution thanks to careful engineering. Top speed is electronically limited to 259km/h – still pretty impressive for an EV.

Mood sounds are piped into the interior for to give the clinical ambiance some spice. PHOTO FROM PORSCHE

Inside, the Taycan is the first Porsche to utilize up to four display screens: one for the driver which replaces the traditional instrument cluster, two on the center console for the Porsche Communication Management System, and an optional fourth so the front passenger can play with entertainment and climate control settings. There is even a virtual hands-free, voice-activated system new for Porsche. Just say “Hey Porsche” with a preprogrammed command, and the system will select drive modes, alter radio settings, set up navigation, and so on.

Though its heart may be electric, expect the Taycan to handle like a proper Porsche. Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM), Porsche Dynamic Chassis Control Sport (PDCC Sport) and Porsche Torque Vectoring Plus (PTV Plus) all help ensure that the this sporty EV never runs out of skill, talent, and ability to keep itself composed on twisty roads.

The Taycan may be eco-friendly, but anyone would probably be easily tempted to drive this thing quickly. PHOTO FROM PORSCHE

Even the sound has been engineered for excitement. Porsche took the natural electric motor noise of the Taycan and tweaked it to play inside the cabin with varying degrees of intensity. This is said to give the digital, almost clinical experience a more analog, raw feel. The Taycan is the anti-EV electric vehicle: an eco-friendly vehiclethat not only delivers impressive efficiency in a carbon-neutral package, but it is also a proper sports car that can get anyone’s juices flowing.

Botchi Santos

Botchi is your friendly, walking car encyclopedia. He loves helping people choose the right vehicle for themselves as much as he enjoys picking the right one for himself. Expect him to write about car culture, test drives and car-shopping advice. His regular column is called ‘Car Life’.