Porsche gives its big sedan and wagon a subtle facelift: new 4S E-Hybrid offers up to 33 miles of all-electric range.
Porsche unveiled the revamped Panamera lineup early Wednesday morning. It’s a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it affair visually, but there are plenty of changes beneath the skin. A range-topping, Nürburgring-tackling, 620-horsepower Panamera Turbo S is one thing. But elsewhere in the lineup are important changes, including a new E-Hybrid model that boasts more power yet also more electric-only range than what’s come before.
Sure, the all-electric Taycan has been hogging the Porsche four-door limelight lately. The brand’s original four-door sedan—okay, technically they’re both hatchbacks—still has the new kid beat for sheer variety though. For 2021 there will be no less than four engine options and three body styles. Let’s take a look at that hybrid model first.
Panamera 4S E-Hybrid debuts
The pre-facelift Panamera had two E-Hybrid options: the “base” Panamera and the Turbo. For 2021 Porsche is splitting the difference, offering the new Panamera 4S E-Hybrid. This new model, available in sedan, Sport Turismo, and stretched-wheelbase Executive body styles, employs the brand’s familiar 2.9-liter V6. (We last experienced the turbo six-pot in the Macan Turbo.) On its own it produces a healthy 440 hp, while the E-Hybrid system bolsters that with an added 134 hp electric motor. Thanks to vastly different power curves, combined maximum system output is 552 hp, with 553 lb-ft backing it up.
With the standard-fit Sport Chrono Package, the 4S E-Hybrid should crack off the 0–62 mph run in 3.7 seconds. That’s well and good, but the more interesting figure for us is the 33-mile electric-only range. That number is based on the European WLTP cycle however, so your mileage may quite literally vary. Porsche increased the battery capacity to 17.9 kWh from the previous E-Hybrid’s 14.1 rating, which it says contributes to the extended range.
Engine updates across the lineup
The regular Panamera and Panamera 4 now both feature the 2.9-liter V6. Previously the base model used the older, slightly larger single-turbo 3.0-liter V6. Performance is unchanged: both deliver the same 325 hp and 330 lb-ft through an eight-speed dual-clutch PDK transmission.
The mid-level GTS sticks to its 4.0-liter V8, but gets a slight 20-horsepower bump to 473 total ponies. Torque remains the same as before, at 457 lb-ft. Not only is the GTS now more powerful; Porsche has massaged the power curve to more closely mirror naturally-aspirated motors. That means a clear build-up to power closer to redline. A new standard-fit sport exhaust should make exploring the upper reaches of the tach that much sweeter.
Increased standard tech
A glance at the interior of the 2021 Panamera doesn’t show much has changed compared to the current model. Porsche has snuck some additional tech goodies into the package though, including much-welcomed standard safety features like Lane Keeping Assist and road sign recognition. Wireless Apple CarPlay has also migrated into the Panamera from elsewhere in the lineup; if you’re an Android user, you’re still out of luck though.
In typical Porsche tradition the options list is as long as the extended Lord of the Rings trilogy. Just a sampling of the available features include night vision, Porsche’s navigation-powered InnoDrive adaptive cruise control, head-up display, 360-degree camera, and more.
Design draws from the Porsche sports cars
The Panamera has gone under the knife for 2021, with mild changes focusing on the front and rear of the exterior. Up front, all three body styles now feature the previously optional Sport Design front bumper as standard. There are larger air intakes in the corners, and the lower DRL treatment draws inspiration from the 992-generation 911. Porsche’s iconic sports car also sets the tone for the changes out back, with a redesigned taillight layout featuring a full-width LED strip connecting the lamps. In turn, the the lamp shape blends into the LED strip smoothly on the inside edges.
New colors are available inside and out, and Porsche has added three wheel designs, bringing the total to 10.
Availability and pricing
The 2021 Porsche Panamera is ready to order in most global markets starting today. Its native Germany will be first to receive deliveries, beginning in October. North American deliveries will happen during the first quarter of 2021.
American pricing will arrive closer to release. However, we don’t expect stickers to move much, as the equivalent Canadian prices will hold steady for their respective trims. In the land of Tim Hortons, the rear-drive Panamera will start at $99,300; adding all-wheel drive bumps that to $104,600. Moving up to the V8-engined Panamera GTS requires $147,400 Canadian. The 4S E-Hybrid doesn’t have a predecessor; it slides in between Panamera 4 and GTS at $128,500, despite boasting more power than the latter. Meanwhile, the top-shelf Turbo S will require 202,400 loonies. A Porsche Canada representative confirmed that 2021 Sport Turismo and Executive trims will also hold steady at current prices, so long as the specific trim existed before.
Editor’s Note: The original article offered an estimate about body style pricing, which has since been confirmed by a Porsche Canada rep.
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