New Porsche Macan EV out testing with minimal camouflage
Porsche’s all-electric SUV looks almost ready to launch and we expect to see it before the end of the year
We’ve caught the new Macan EV testing multiple times and Porsche itself has even issued a sketch of its upcoming all-electric SUV, but these latest spy pictures give us our best look yet ahead of its expected unveiling later this year.
The Macan is Porsche’s second best-selling model globally (after the Cayenne) so electric version is coming a little late considering it has many tough rivals like the Tesla Model Y, Lexus RZ and BMW iX3 in the mid-size premium electric SUV sector.
These new images confirm many exterior design details that’ll feature on the Macan EV. The headlight cluster is similar to the Taycan’s - thinner than the unit seen on the current internal-combustion engined Porsche Macan models. Below are a set of secondary lights and there’s no upper grille, just a thin opening low down in the bumper integrating the radar system. The overall design of the front bumper is also on show for the first time in these images, combined with a protruding lip spoiler.
The profile of the electric Macan is much more rakish than that of the ICE Macan, creating a more sporting stance. The roofline slopes down to the boot opening in the typical Macan coupe-SUV style and to the rear we can see an active aerodynamic spoiler. Unlike the Audi Q6 e-tron (which will use the same architecture and will be offered in SUV and coupe-suv ‘Sportback’ guise), the Macan EV could remain solely as a coupe-SUV. There’s still a little bit of camouflage on the rear light area but we can clearly see a lightbar just like the Taycan’s here. The obviously fake exhaust tips from previous test cars have finally been dropped from the rear bumper.
Porsche has already spoken of its desire to make the Macan EV the sportiest offering within its segment. To achieve this, the Macan EV will be one of the first cars to sit on the VW Group’s new PPE architecture. Senior engineers from the Macan EV project have told Auto Express that the adoption of an all-new platform, the Volkswagen Group’s latest PPE setup, will allow the Macan to feature not only trick 800V electrics but also significant chassis tweaks that will “make the Macan feel unmistakably like a Porsche”.
Underneath the body we’ll see the most advanced iterations yet of Porsche’s Active Suspension Management, with two-valve dampers used for the first time on any of the firm’s cars, electric or combustion-engined. “This allows us a greater spread of settings,” Dominik Hartmann, the car’s chief chassis engineer told us. “You’ll feel a bigger difference between all of the PASM modes.”
Both steel springs and air suspension will be available, with a double-wishbone layout at the front and a multi-link set-up at the rear. The car will be able to vector its torque from front to rear – in fact, it will run in rear-drive mode most of the time, with the front motor disconnected, as in the latest Taycans – and an electronic rear differential will allow lateral torque flow at this end of the vehicle, improving agility. There’s rear steering too, with up to five degrees of angle to aid manoeuvrability and stability, and a revised front/rear weight distribution of 48/52 has persuaded Porsche to increase the difference in width between the front and rear tyres. Up to 22-inch wheel sizes will be offered.
The Macan will feature a prismatic cell-based battery of around 100kWh in capacity, and be capable of faster charging speeds than the Taycan’s 270kW, with enough shove to recharge from five to 80 per cent of capacity in just 25 minutes. The total system power from both motors is more than 600bhp, with over 1,000Nm of torque.
The battery set-up will also feature a trick inverter designed to slightly increase the charging rate when connected to slower 400V chargers. The system – not dissimilar to the tech featured in some smartphones – will, in effect, split the 12 battery modules into a pair of 400V packs when it realises it has been connected to a charger running at that rate. It will level up the charge between the ‘two halves’, then feed both simultaneously for a small reduction in the overall charging time.
The new model – the first of Porsche’s nameplates to move across from combustion-engined power to all-electric propulsion – will make use of the PPE platform to get a longer wheelbase within similar dimensions to the current car’s. This should boost cabin space in the rear. Hartmann told us, “I’m over six-foot four-inches and I’m very comfortable in the rear cabin. We’re confident we have made gains in the packaging there.”
Macans have been spied testing for over a year now and Porsche has even issued official ‘teaser’ images of its prototypes. There’s no official word yet on a debut date but expect to see the car by the middle of 2023, and the first deliveries to customers in the first quarter of 2024.
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