W as you start, you have to finish bring. Or: if comparable, then correctly. What began with the Cayenne is continued in the Panamera, the much-cited fourth series: the days when only sports cars rolled off the production line at Porsche are over. The Swabians have expanded their model portfolio and are now addressing broader groups of customers, but have also made themselves comparable - that involves risks.
On the other hand: If the internal competition builds hot-blooded sports cars (see Audi with the R8 in the super test), why shouldn't the actual sports car manufacturer also develop SUVs and sedans?
Porsche Panamera S also with manual six-speed gearbox
So Porsche Panamera. As long as Ferdinand Piëch is still dreaming his diesel dreams for the sedan with the coupé-like lines from Stuttgart-Zuffenhausen, the entry-level model is the 4.8-liter naturally aspirated engine known from the Cayenne with 400 hp and 500 Nm of torque. Unlike comparable eight-cylinder models from other manufacturers, the Panamera S can also be ordered with a manual six-speed transmission instead of a dual clutch transmission (PDK).
Porsche only trusts the manual model to have a comparatively small market share, and wants sporty fathers with it However, the sense of independent shifting and control does not disappoint and is therefore sticking to the traditional transmission range in this car class. Since the interplay between the switch box and the aspirated V8 takes place extremely harmoniously and goes well with the character of the Panamera, this is to be welcomed without reservation. Ultimately - that was the southern German sports car manufacturer, which will lose its independence with the gradual integration into the Lower Saxony VW group by 2011 - the Panamera should also mark the sporty spearhead of its class.
The lush dimensions of the Porsche Panamera S are unusual
Even though the lush dimensions are quite unusual for a Porsche apart from the Cayenne: The basic model, with its 400 horsepower attacking the rear wheels, an impressive 4.97 meters in length and an impressive 1,884 kilograms of live weight. All kinds of efforts are necessary to ensure that this succeeds in a species-appropriate manner. Ergo rolled the test car with all the delicacies thatthe Panamera equipment list has to offer to the editorial office. Of these, the PCCB brake system (8,033 euros), the 20-inch sports design wheelset (2,856 euros), the air-sprung PASM chassis (1,951 euros) and the Sport Chrono Package Plus (787 euros) and the sports exhaust system (2606 euros). The remaining difference between the basic vehicle price (94,575 euros) and the test car price (141,669 euros) is due to comfort features such as the complete leather interior, the Bose sound system or an electric sliding /lifting roof.
In everyday life living in the Porsche Panamera S. This is all the more true as the adaptive sports seats, which are also subject to a surcharge, can be perfectly adapted to any stature thanks to extensive electrical adjustment options, which are ideally at hand on the raised center console that extends into the rear , the steering wheel offers a very wide range of adjustment in all dimensions and the feeling of space at the front and rear is generous. The absence of disruptive driving or wind noises in the well-insulated interior makes long journeys a pleasure.
The flap exhaust of the Porsche Panamera S can only be heard when the windows are open
The fact that the four-door, like the brand's sports coupés, can be ordered with flap exhaust should not be overestimated in this context: Only those who are on the road with the hatches open will get the slightly more sonorous voice of the 4.8-liter -V8 and the warm throbbing heartbeat during the transition from load to push mode. The tonal tuning of the exhaust system has been adapted to the primary purpose of the car.
The manual Panamera S could easily fill your mouth with a bit more. After all, on the short circuit in Hockenheim, none of the direct competitors can easily fool him, as a glance at the comparison between the E 500 Coupé and the Granturismo S shows. With a time of 1.15.8 minutes, the 1.9-ton Porsche not only sets itself in the limelight far better than the Mercedes (1.17.1 minutes) and the Maserati (1.16.3 minutes). Its pronounced handiness and neutrality also surprise positively. In this regard, the Panamera follows the brand's tradition. The performance of the rear-wheel drive vehicle in the standard sprint is appropriate for the class, the performance on the brakes, despite ceramic stoppers, subjectively worse than the brand is used to. Objectively, there is no noticeable difference.
Because of the long wheelbase, it is obvious that the five-meter limo does not tear up trees on the narrowly set slalom course. 66.1 km /h average speed are worthy of all honor in this class. Panamera owners should be less pleased that the consumption is also appropriate.