Prior to its appearance at the Paris Motor Show, Porsche has revealed the hybrid version of their all-new Panamera, which brings the technical and aesthetic refinements along with a strong combination of fuel efficiency and genuinely impressive performance.
Arguably the most important release for Porsche in 2016 was that of the second-generation Panamera. As the initial impressions start to pour in, it’s clear that the all-new model is a technical and dynamic juggernaut, eclipsing the release of a new generation of Boxster and Cayman (now called 718) as well as the updated 911 Carrera with an all-turbo family of engines.
When the new Panamera premiered in Berlin a couple of months ago, the Turbo and 4S (petrol and diesel) were chosen as the ambassadors to the public and media. We knew more would follow suit, and indeed they have, starting with the 4 E-Hybrid.
The car features a newly developed petrol-electric drivetrain that has been entirely reengineered for the 2017 Panamera and will also find its way to the next Cayenne E-Hybrid, combining a 2.9-litre bi-turbo V6 petrol engine that works together with an electric motor to generate a total system output of 340kW and 700Nm. And when behaved, the hybrid system is claimed to sip as little as 2.5-litres/100km of fuel and emit just 56g/km of carbon dioxide.
The previous Panamera’s hybrid system also used the electric motor to augment its petrol engine, but where the new version differs is that the electric power is available to the driver as soon as the accelerator pedal is pushed. Before, the pedal needed to be pressed80 percent of the way down for the additional electric drive to be engaged.
Porsche says that this new behaviour is akin to that used in their 918 Spyder hybrid performance car, making the electric motor available at all times to generate savage acceleration when the turbocharged engine and electric motor transmit torque to all four wheels.
New new hybrid Panamera is 0.9 seconds quicker to 100km/h than its predecessor at 4.6 seconds, topping out at 278km/h. Unlike the older car’s 8-speed torque converter automatic, this second-generation version uses a 7-speed PDK dual-clutch transmission to handle gear shifts as with every other variant reveals thus far.
In addition to the usual driving modes offered by Porsche such as Sport and Sport Plus through the Sport Chromo package, the Panamera E-Hybrid has the unique Hybrid Auto, E-Charge, and E-power.
At lower speeds, the car is programmed to set off in E-power, efficiently leveraging the electric motor’s instant torque, and with a fully charged battery (14.1kWh) can remain under zero emissions thrust for up to 50km and a top speed of 140km/h.