Ignition

PANAMERA WITH GREAT P OWER COMES GREEN BONAFIDES

PORSCHE TURBO S E- HYBRID

- By Lee Bailie

For the first time in its almost 10-year history, the most powerful Panamera in Porsche's line-up is also the greenest.

The 2018 Panamera Turbo S EHybrid, is a plug-in that marries an electric motor / battery system derived from the 918 Spyder hybrid with a ripsnortin­g 4.0L twin-turbocharg­ed gas V8 engine (550 hp / 568 lb-ft). Mated to slick-shifting 8-speed PDK automatic, this full-size sedan puts produces an eye-popping 680 total horsepower and 627 lb-ft. of torque.

As one might imagine, it's blindingly fast: 0-100 km/h in 3.4 seconds with a top speed of 310 km/h. The long-wheelbase (Executive) model is a tenth slower (3.5) with the same top-end velocity. It's also plenty quick in allelectri­c mode: 0-60 km/h in six seconds, with a top speed of 140 km/h.

Those numbers alone are enough to make the Turbo S E-hybrid the range-topper, but as Porsche explained during a recent media preview

VICTORIA

An optional 7.2 kwh on-board charger (230-V / 32-A) can charge the battery in 2.4 hours, according to Porsche.

Among the other standard mechanical kit is an alphabet soup of fancy Porsche chassis tech: Porsche Dynamic Chassis Control Sport (PDCC Sport), Porsche Torque Vectoring Plus (PTV Plus), Porsche Ceramic Composite Brake (PCCB), Power Steering Plus and 21-inch wheels lifted from the 911 Turbo. Adaptive aero elements (spoiler) and a three-chamber air suspension system is also standard, and Executive models also gets rear axle steering.

Dimensiona­lly, the Panamera has grown during its redesign. The new car is 34 mm longer, 10 mm taller and rides on a 30 mm longer wheelbase. It's also 215 kg heavier than its predecesso­r, but is 177 mm narrower. The Turbo S E-hybrid Executive rides on a longer wheelbase (150 mm), and is longer (150 mm) and taller (5 mm) and heavier (100 kg) than the regular version.

From a design standpoint, the new Panamera is still recognizab­le as such, but it now looks sleeker and more contempora­ry than the aging first-gen car, which was refreshed for the 2013 model year but dates to 2010.

The new car has a more contempora­ry face with wider front air intakes, a more squarish headlight design (with quad DRLS) and angular LED tail lights that are reminiscen­t of recently redesigned Porsches, the 911 especially.

The lines of the car appear more aggressive, especially the power domes that crease the hood, giving it a more bulging appearance. The sides also get distinctiv­e lines, one just below the beltline and two others that run near the bottom of the doors that create a more chisled and athletic appearance. The other design cue that caught this eye is the sloping roofline that flows into a distinctiv­e `flyline' characteri­stic, a detail featured on all Porsche coupes.

Porsche has also added splashes of neon green (badging, brake calipers) that are designed to set the Turbo S E-hybrid apart, and they've added similar design details on a revised interior layout as well.

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