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Porsche’s fast but frugal Panamera


Porsche has revealed its 2014 Panamera S E-Hybrid, a car that has made headlines with its claimed 3,1 l/100 km consumption and sub-100 g/km CO2 emissions figures. Despite those impressive green credentials, though, the E-Hybrid has some serious performance figures to its name, too, with 306 kW on tap.

It’s powered by a new 236 kW 3,0-litre V6 petrol engine, which is mated to a 70 kW electric motor. It also has plug-in charging ability, which is one of the key things that has dropped the CO2 figure so dramatically below the current hybrid’s figure of 159 g/km. Fuel consumption, too, us significantly better. In fact, Porsche claims a 59% improvement. Exactly how much better the carbon emissions are likely to be is unknown at this stage, as Porsche is not making that figure public quite yet.

Perhaps even more impressive than all this environmental friendliness is that, even with such good economy and emissions figures, the Panamera S E-Hybrid will still get to 100 km/h in 5,2 seconds and go on to a top speed of 269 km/h. That 0-100 km/h sprint time is more than half a second quicker than that of the old car.

On top of the petrol engine and the electric motor, the new car has a 9,4 kWh battery pack, which has five times the capacity of the outgoing Panamera Hybrid. Efficiency is further aided by the gearbox, an eight-speed Tiptronic S unit. The non-hybrid Panameras will make use of a seven-speed PDK transmission.

Running on electric power alone, the S E-Hybrid is said to be able to travel 18 to 35 km at speeds of up to 134 km/h. There’s also a coasting mode that decouples the engine to allow for longer periods of free-wheeling with less mechanical friction to slow the car.

The car will be unveiled alongside the facelifted Panamera at the Shanghai Motor Show, which itself has a few green improvements to brag about. In the S and $s models, a new twin-turbo 3,0-litre V6 replaces the naturally aspirated 4,8-litre V8. Power in the 3,0-litre is up by 14 kW and torque by 19 Nm, but fuel consumption is said to be 18% better.

Visually, the facelift is rather subtle one, the design focus being on smoothing the overall look of the car. However, new to the Panamera range is the Executive package, available only on 4S and Turbo models, which extends the wheelbase by 15 cm and gives the buyer adaptive air suspension as standard.

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