Porsche has taken payments from 30,000 European customers eager to be among the first to drive the brand’s first all-electric vehicle, the Taycan sedan. The number of reservations exceeded the automaker’s expectations, according to CEO Oliver Blume.
It also gives some amount of hope that electric vehicles still have a place in the premium market space. EV sales remain weak and high-end models like Jaguar’s E-Pace and Audi’s e-tron have struggled, though both have suffered supply-related struggles since entering production.
Even though Porsche’s September Taycan debut is set in stone, it just can’t help itself with the teasers. While the images probably won’t mirror the production version exactly (that paint job certainly won’t fly), Porsche seems to be implying the bodywork seen here is headed for the assembly line.
From what we can see, there’s a lot left over from the Mission E. The overall look has softened slightly, but the broader strokes of the concept vehicle remain largely intact. Take the headlamps, for example. The overall shape has changed, resulting in something more in line with the rest of the brand’s lineup. However, they maintain the same bulb layout as the Mission E.
Up until I was eleven, I pronounced Porsche in the plebeian, frowned-upon way. “I’ll take the Pour-sh,” I would tell my friends while we played racing video games and shoveled bags of chips into our mouths. Then I met an adult who actually owned one and they set me straight on the matter as I ogled their vintage 911.
“It’s pronounced a little like the woman’s name Portia,” he told me as I nodded and acted as though I understood, even though I had never met a single person with that name.
Since then, I’ve had countless opportunities to utter that name in a condescending manner, and not just regarding the brand. Several of Porsche’s models use names that look easy enough to pronounce, but aren’t. However, as the years roll on, I’ve almost stopped correcting people — as I’ve become absolutely convinced of a conspiracy where Porsche does this intentionally so those in the know can lord it over those who aren’t.
Electric cars are a polarizing matter among automotive enthusiasts. While a small group of ardent EV loyalists exist, a large portion of car people look at them with varying levels of contempt. However, let’s not kid ourselves, electrification is an inevitability. Even if EVs don’t proliferate like rabbits in springtime, standard powertrains will continue to evolve and electric automobiles will account for some of the most extreme performance models on the road.
We’ve already seen what Tesla can do if given enough money. The Model S P100D can already hit 60 mph in just over 2 seconds — putting extravagantly priced, flamboyant supercars to shame.
More vehicles are coming to fit this mold. Porsche has been working on a rival for Tesla’s sedan for a while now, and recently released the specs. While the Germans seem to have developed a strong performer, ready to feed plenty of internal combustion vehicles a crow supper, it doesn’t appear to be quite as fast as Tesla’s best. Either that, or Porsche is downplaying the Taycan’s (formerly the Mission E) technical specifications.
Rumors of an electrified Porsche 911 have been circulating for months — and were eventually confirmed when CEO Oliver Blume claimed the forthcoming plug-in would be the “most powerful” version of the sports coupe the company has ever built. This, of course, stoked new rumors that automaker might decide to make the 911 a fully electric model.
Porsche wants to put those ideas down before they get out of hand. At the company’s annual results conference in Stuttgart, Blume clarified that the 911 would eventually yield a plug-in variant but would never be purely electric. While we advise all automakers to never say never, Porsche does seem to feel as if a battery only edition of the 911 is preposterous. The CEO even warned that the high-performance hybrid wouldn’t appear until some time after the 922 generation had already been in production. “We are waiting for the further evolution in battery technology so you should not expect a plug-in version in the coming years. It’s currently planned when the 992 is refreshed,” he said.
Porsche, the iconic performance nameplate diving ever deeper into luxury and electrification, once again finds itself incapable of withholding its excitement toward both. Company board member Detlev von Platen claims Porsche is seriously considering increasing the production capacity of its upcoming Mission E model beyond 20,000 annual units and electrifying the Macan crossover.
According to von Platen, initial customer inquiries into the Mission E has been so strong that the brand wants to make sure it can meet demand. Buying habits also give the automaker hope that its customer base is prepared to make the eventual switch from internal combustion to electrically-assisted engines.
“In Europe, around 60 percent of Panamera vehicles were delivered with a hybrid drivetrain,” von Platen said.
Porsche threw a party at its museum on Thursday, marking and celebrating 70 years of sports cars. The first vehicle to bear the Porsche name was registered on June 8, 1948 – a 356 “No.1” Roadster. With it, Ferry Porsche’s dream of a sports car turned into a reality.
Mixed in with the event’s nostalgia was a look to the future, as CEO Oliver Blume outlined a three-pronged strategy to diversify its lineup. The three pillars? Plug-in hybrids, combustion-engined sports cars, and sporty electric vehicles.
Porsche announced Friday that it would build its Mission E car — an all-electric sedan with looks that a Panamera would kill for — and sell the car by 2020. The Mission E concept was announced at Frankfurt earlier this year.
In addition to the car’s 0-60 mph time in under 3.5 seconds, the Mission E (no word on whether that is the final name) will also boast a 310-mile range and an 800-volt charge capability that could recharge the battery up to 80 percent in 15 minutes, providing you can find a charger for it.
Porsche didn’t announce pricing or availability yet, because presumably they’re figuring out exactly how much people will be willing to pay for the Stuttgart coat of arms and how many sales they’ve already lost to Tesla.
Porsche announced its all-electric four-door concept sedan at the Frankfurt Auto Show, complete with 15-minute charging (to 80 percent) and 310-mile overall range. There’s also some holographic and emoticon blather, but we’ll get to that later.
According to Porsche, the Mission E will use two electric motors with a combined output of 600 horsepower to power the car up to 60 mph in 3.5 seconds. The car’s 800-volt charger would be a first for electric cars, and would help the car charge up to 80 percent in 15 minutes. According to Tesla, the Model S takes about 30 minutes to charge up to 80 percent for similar range.
Porsche didn’t say when (or even if) the car would make it into production, but it’s likely that something very much like it will be heading our way soon. Maybe this will be a new Panamera?
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