Porsche look to the future with their new Panamera Sport Turismo, a sports car that is also a family car, a hatchback, a four-door station wagon, a hybrid plug-in, petrol efficient, gadget-laden, luxury concept that is all things to all men.
It still looks unmistakeably like a Porsche but it's got a real family car feel. It's an imagining of what the Panamera four-seater grand tourer might look like as a hatchback. This type of cross-over hasn't been a big hit across the water in the 'States, but the German manufacturer still believes there is room for a car like this on European roads.
Every concept these days has to be hybrid, it's become more of an imperative and Porsche are proud of their technology in this regard. The battery pack is located in the rear under a glass panel that becomes clear at the touch of a button. Full charged the battery will get you about 30 km using the 95 horsepower electric engine, which is perfect for city driving. If you need to get out on the open road than there's a 333 horsepower supercharged V6 which gives you plenty of zip , combining the two engines gets you from 0-100 km in under 6 seconds.
The tech is amped up on this too, there are no side view mirrors, instead interior panels display the side view from neatly positioned cameras, it does alter the look of the car significantly giving it a more streamlined figure. The central stack is replaced by a touch screen central control unit between the seats for climate and nav as well as traction control and power distribution variations. A handy smart phone app lets you find your car in the crowded car park or even locate it in unfamiliar city streets, as well as set charging remotely.
There is no date for when this car might go into production but if the buzz around Paris is anything to go by there is definitely an interest in seeing this become realty. It is something in between the 911 and the Cayenne, mixing and matching the best from both, it is smart, future-orientated, practical, stylish and has the Porsche factor in its looks. It’s a beast of a car and we want.
By Hugo Mc Cafferty