After a seemingly endless cascade of leaks, previews and spy photos, the second-generation Porsche Panamera ‘sedan’ has been unveiled with an all-new platform, and new V6 and V8 turbo engines.
As revealed earlier, the new Panamera features LED headlights up front, and a thin strip of tail-lights at the rear. The car’s looks now have an even stronger visual link to the 911 range thanks to a reduced front overhang, a faster roof line and a longer rear overhang.
The new Panamera is marginally larger than the car it replaces. Measuring 5049mm long, 1937mm wide and 1423mm tall, it is 34mm longer, 6mm wider and 5mm taller than the first-generation car, while the wheelbase has grown by 20mm to 2950mm.
Trunk space is rated 495 litres with the rear seats in place. Luggage capacity grows to 1304L when the 40:20:40 split-fold backrest is laid down.
The second-generation Panamera is the first vehicle to use the Porsche-developed MSB component set for rear- and all-wheel-drive vehicles, featuring a bonnet, boot, roof and fenders all made from aluminium.
With the new Panamera, Stuttgart has taken the steps to make its four-door sports sedan even more ‘Porsche’, moving its entire production to the company’s Leipzig manufacturing facility – the previous-generation Panamera was partly manufactured at Volkswagen’s Hanover plant and then assembled by Porsche in Leipzig.
At launch, the new Panamera will be available in 4S, 4S Diesel, and Turbo specifications. All launch variants are offered with permanent all-wheel-drive – the first time for the diesel – and an eight-speed dual-clutch (PDK) transmission.
Expect more affordable and faster variants to be unveiled over the next couple of months.
Interior and available technology
Ahead of the driver is an analogue tachometer flanked by configurable 7.0-inch displays on both sides. In the centre of the dashboard is a 12.3-inch screen for the Porsche Communication Management infotainment system, which is available with online navigation, natural language recognition, and Apple CarPlay mirroring compatibility.
The quantity of buttons throughout the cabin has been greatly reduced, with many functions now controlled by capacitive controls arrayed around the gear shifter. Other functions have been shifted off to the infotainment system.
According to Porsche, “despite a significantly extended range of communication, convenience and assistance systems, different functions can now be used and operated more clearly and intuitively”.
The climate control system is available with individual control for all four zones, while the louvres for the vents in the centre of dash feature touch-sensitive slide controls.
Optional equipment extends to a tilting panoramic sunroof, massaging seats, a Burmester 3D surround sound system, and an adjustable ambient lighting package.
Also available is an 84-point matrix LED headlight system, and a night vision system that’s able to highlight people and large animals.
Driver assistance technologies available throughout the new Panamera range include adaptive air suspension, electronic damper control, torque vectoring, active roll stabilisation, rear axle steering, and a ‘4D’ chassis control system.
The new InnoDrive system upgrades the adaptive cruise control setup to take into account navigation data, and is able to plan out gear shifting, cruising, acceleration and deceleration points for the next three kilometres.
For now, the model range is topped by the Turbo, which features a new direct-injection 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8 that churns out 404kW of power at 5750rpm, and 770Nm between 1960 and 4500rpm. That’s up 22kW and 70Nm on the outgoing Panamera Turbo, which uses a 4.8-litre twin-turbo V8.
Top speed is rated at 306km/h. Porsche claims a 0-100km/h time of 3.8 seconds for regular Turbo models, with the time cut to 3.6 seconds when the car is equipped with the Sport Chrono package.
The Panamera Turbo is the first Porsche to feature cylinder deactivation, with the new V8 able to operate as a four-cylinder engine under light throttle loads. Fuel economy is said to improved by 1.1L/100km to 9.4L/100km in the combined EU cycle.
The Turbo features standard 20-inch alloy wheels, and an automatically operated rear wing that splits to increase surface area when its rises.
The second-generation Panamera 4S is powered by a 2.9-litre twin-turbo V6 that delivers 324kW of power at 5650rpm, and 550Nm of torque between 1750 and 5500rpm. Compared to today’s 4S, the new model has an extra 15kW and 30Nm to its name.
With standard all-wheel drive, the 4S is able to complete 0-100km/h standard in 4.4 seconds or 4.2 seconds when equipped with the optional Sport Chrono pack. Top speed is said to be 286km/h, while fuel economy is rated at 8.2L/100km.
Panamera 4S Diesel
The new Panamera 4S Diesel is equipped with a new sequential twin-turbo V8 diesel mill capable of delivering 310kW at 3500rpm, and 850Nm between 1000 and 3250rpm.
With a top speed of 285km/h, the 4S Diesel is claimed to be the world’s fastest production diesel vehicle. The all-wheel-drive compression ignition model has a 0-100km/h time of 4.5 seconds, or 4.3 seconds when equipped with the Sport Chrono pack.
Fuel economy under the EU rating scheme is said to be 6.8L/100km.
Australian pricing and availability
In Australia, the new Panamera range kicks off at $304,200 for the Panamera 4S, rising to $312,100 for the 4S Diesel, and topping out at $376,900 for the Turbo.
The wider Panamera range currently begins at $204,200 for the 228kW/400Nm Panamera V6 petrol, but Porsche has yet to confirm plans for lower-level offerings in the new 2017 range.
Sales begin today, but local deliveries of the 4S and Turbo won’t begin until some time in the first quarter of 2017, with the 4S Diesel following on a few weeks after those models arrive.