Porsche Panamera could survive into electric era alongside Taycan
25 March 2021 - autocar
Porsche boss hints at potential for an electric Panamera, but it would need to be differentiated from Taycan
Porsche boss Oliver Blume has suggested the Panamera could survive the brand's electric transition, and be sold as an EV alongside the Taycan.
The 971-generation Panamera has been on sale since 2017, and was substantially updated last year, but Porsche has yet to confirm whether the nameplate will feature in its line-up beyond 2024, when the current car is set to be replaced.
With a wheelbase of 2900mm and measuring 4960mm long by 1970mm wide, the newer Taycan has an almost identical footprint to the Panamera, raising questions over the likelihood of a fully electric Panamera.
The Taycan has also recently received a new Cross Turismo estate variant, bringing improved interior space and enhanced usability in the same way as the Panamera Sport Turismo.
But Blume hinted at the potential for a third-gen Panamera, saying: "I think it could work, because they are playing in different segments. The Panamera is one step higher than the Taycan."
He did suggest, however, that one or both of the models would need to be revised so as to avoid any segment crossover. "That is the challenge for these products," he said, "to achieve differentiation between them as much as possible, and also to differentiate from the competition.
"For Porsche, we are counting on five topics for differentiation: high quality, Porsche-typical design, Porsche-typical performance, fast charging (where Porsche is much better than the competition because of its 800V system) and the driving experience. These five pillars are very important for future differentiation.
"We do compare to the competition, and when we bring a future Taycan and Panamera, there will be differentiation between them in the C- and D-segment."
An electric Panamera would almost certainly make use of the new PPE platform being developed by Porsche and Audi, which will make its debut underneath the all-electric version of the next-generation Macan SUV.
It's important to note, however, that Porsche plans for 80% of its global sales to be electrified by 2030, so there will still be room for combustion engines in the line-up of certain models.
The 911, we know, will be the last Porsche model to ditch combustion, but the Panamera is already sold with a 2.9-litre electrified V6, so a variant of this format with a longer electric-only range could see the model retain its petrol motor into the next generation.