Forgive me King Elon for I have sinned. Welcome to my new Porsche Taycan Turbo…. *OK so that’s a bit of a joke/clickbait, this was just a test drive, but here are my thoughts compared with my Tesla Model S P100D and 6 years of Tesla ownership, obviously, I’m heavily biased but I’ve tried to put that to one side to give a fair review:
- Super fun to drive, the performance makes the car feel extremely light and responsive.
- The acceleration feels very much like Model S in Ludicrous+ mode, therefore very quick feeling and 0 lag at all speeds (unlike the iPace/Polestar etc).
- Feels lower than my Tesla, therefore a sportier feel as you’re presumably closer to the ground.
- Handling great, a lot less body roll in corners compared to S.
- Launch control decent and the 2 gears actually add to the enjoyment with the change into second gear not slowing you down at all.
- The design turns heads when you drive (good for my ego).
- The options list / customisability of it is impressive, there won’t be many identical cars on the road.
- Alcantara steering wheel.
- With the correct wheel, brake and paint combo it’s an impressive looking car.
- It feels as wide as Model S but without the sexy rear haunches.
- Obviously nowhere near as practical as my Model S but that’s understandable it’s technically a different target market (even though performance-wise it’s often compared).
- Build quality decent but not as good as I had presumed it would be (e.g. some exterior trim showing metal underneath, see photo below).
- 85 miles of range at 50% SoC when I ended my drive, range doesn’t seem that great but not helped by the performance and fun of launching.
- Paint quality was good (but poor for a premium car company that’s been building cars since 1898) 80% of the paint had orange peel (which is normally fixable after purchase to be fair) and on the other Taycans in the car park ~60% of panels were faultless (but side panels were all bad). See photo/s below.
- Menu system complicated and clunky (it’s a new car for me though so bound to be to some degree of needing to get used to it).
- The awful sound the car produces (personal taste) but whilst you can turn this off it turns back on on the next drive (only when in sport/+), was told you cannot keep this off permanently. UPDATE: Supposedly this is an optional extra (why you would have it is beyond me but I guess it’s designed for those moving from big inefficient petrol exhaust systems).
- Voice control OK but not great (about the same as Tesla to be fair).
- The low height of the car makes it more difficult to get in and out (personal stuff here, in short, I think I need to lose some weight but I’d imagine for an older person it could be difficult).
- 4 years ago I paid £150,000 for my Model S, this would get me a very decent spec’d Taycan today but it’s still comparable to my 4-year-old Model S for ~80% of the car. This proves how far ahead Tesla has been over the last 10 years, although once the Roadster arrives I don’t see much point in the Taycan (as long as the Roadster lives up to the handling and build quality of the Taycan).
- Adjustment of the 18-way electric seats was fine for the standard stuff (back/forward/up/down etc) but I think I’d need the user manual for the rest (again this is likely just because the car is new to me).
- I couldn’t get the ‘Cruise Control’ to work at all (pressing all the cruise stalk buttons and pulling it in all directions did nothing, no message on the screen to tell me what to do, obviously you would put this down to it being a new car for me but I test drove a Polestar 2 earlier in the day and managed that instantly)
- The steering wheel blocks a large chunk of the dash display (should have a HUD, UPDATE: supposedly a ~£1K option).
- ‘Haptic’ feedback / touch screens are very much like my old Blackberry Storm smart phone (think 2010), we’re spoilt with our Tesla screens IMO. UPDATE: I’m told by a Taycan owner you can turn this off.
- No supercharger network (although Ionity etc is slowly improving) and the Taycan does use quite a bit of energy (not helped by the impressive performance).
- Why do I have an old school analogue clock on the dash?
- A pain to actually get a test drive, this was my 3rd attempt since the car launched in the UK (albeit with Covid in-between which accounts for the majority of the delay). They failed to send me email confirmations and didn’t return my call, so I had to chase them twice. I was then given just 30 mins as “the car is the sales director and he needs enough battery to get home to Birmingham tonight”.
- The options list / customisability of it, yes this was also a positive but wow the price goes up damn quick!
Summary / tl;dr
A great car that will massively help to move those current ICE Porsche owners over to electric or allow those without families to own something truly unique to their tastes as long as they have the bank balance to match.
If I was single, without a family and looking to buy another premium EV, it would be a difficult decision to make but the practicality, supercharger network, range, software, community and mission that accompanies my Tesla still wins hands down for me but in July I will be test driving the Cross Turismo version…
Tesla in my personal opinion should up their game with customisability, interior build quality, options and road handling.