Advance notice – I should advise that I bought a Porsche a few days ago. I’m extremely happy and somewhat frustrated. Happy, because the car is absolutely epic. Frustrated because right now I can’t get it down my driveway. I’ll explain in another post.
I point this out because some people know about my purchase and they’ll see this first post in a long time and think “Oh no, he’s going all Porsche now.” Well, no I’m not.
What’s prompted this post is that I’ve just seen the new photos of the Porsche Macan online and I have to say…… I like it.
Saab fans will probably want to stab me in the throat for saying this, but the first thought I had when seeing the Macan was the Saab 9X concept. I’m not saying the Macan looks like the 9X, but the proportions and the intention of the design reminds me of the Saab 9X: a more sporting and car-like utility vehicle. Saabophiles will know that Saab’s former design chief, Michael Mauer, has been at Porsche for around a decade now, so maybe the resemblance is not merely imagined.
Autocar went for a ride in a Macan with a Porsche test team and they came away quite impressed (note: it was a ride and not a drive). The Mecan Turbo they got a ride in had a twin-turbo version of Porsche’s 3.6 litre boxer engine making just short of 400hp. There’s also talk of a V6 petrol and an unspecified turbo-diesel. There’s even talk of a 4-cylinder turbo version, which Autocar notes would be the first Porsche with a 4-cylinder since the 968 (which, incidentally, just happens to be the car I bought a few days ago).
A word from Autocar:
What strikes me most about its on-road characteristics, once we leave the wide boulevards of Los Angeles behind, is its sheer agility. The Macan corners with all the eagerness of a well sorted sporting estate, displaying sharp turn-in, remarkably little body roll and an ability to accept lateral forces without any discernible understeer, even at the limit. There appears to be abundant levels of mid-corner grip, and the four-wheel drive system ensures that there’s always loads of traction and, in combination with the Turbo’s deep reserves of torque, terrific drive out of low-speed corners.
There seems to be lots of Volkswagen Group links here. The basics of the car seem to be derived from the Audi Q5, though with plenty of Porsche-specific mechanicals to make it distinct. The V6 engine will be from the Q5, too, and you can bet your underpants that any turbocharged 2-litre will have seen service in a hot Golf in a previous life.
People, especially Porsche people, love to hate on Porsches that aren’t 911’s. It’s perfectly normal and very close to being understandable – the 911 is one hell of an icon. The people who own and love their non-911 Porsches couldn’t give a rat’s tossbag about it, however, and I’m sure there will be plenty of people putting their hands up for some Porsche-hate in the form of Macan ownership over the next few years.
The Macan is due to debut at the LA Auto Show next month, at which time the full specs and interior shots will become available.
Bring it on.
Click the pics in the gallery below to enlargify.