Porsche Is Road-Testing an Electric Macan, Promises More Range Than the Taycan
Interestingly, the final product may not even be called a Macan.
Following the success of the Porsche Taycan electric sedan, the German automaker is now working hard to electrify its legendary lineup of sports cars, crossovers and SUVs. The latest target is placed squarely on the shoulders of the hot-selling Macan, which we're now learning a bit more about as it readies for real-world testing.
On Monday, Porsche announced that camouflaged versions of its upcoming electric crossover have completed their initial test drives at the Porsche Development Center in Weissach, Germany, and have been cleared for on-road tests ahead of its 2023 debut.
The real meat of testing a new product comes from real-life scenarios, and according to Porsche Research and Development board member Michael Steiner, is "one of the most important milestones in the development process."
The on-road testing represents yet another facet of vehicle testing, including digital simulations. Closed-track testing, however, only gives a fraction of the data needed for Porsche to understand how a vehicle will perform in the real world, and digital simulations are most useful to give a representation of factors like aerodynamics and energy management.
Porsche first revealed that it was working on an electric version of its Macan crossover back in 2019. The automaker committed to utilized Volkswagen Group's modular Premium Platform Electric (PPE) platform in order to utilize a singular architecture across its upcoming electric vehicles, including key underpinnings like the 800-volt battery infrastructure that debuted in the Porsche Taycan.
The Taycan also served as a benchmark for discovering a driving range that is acceptable to Porsche's clients. Steiner indicated that the Macan will offer more range than the Taycan, as customers in certain markets were affected adversely by range anxiety and an EPA rating of 227 miles. While no official number has been quoted, Steiner notes that Porsche may also decide to limit the number of battery choices available in some markets. Many will still receive a standard range and long range battery pack, however, the North American market will likely receive just one battery—the larger one.
Another change could be the name of the vehicle at launch. While the electric crossover is expected to go on sale along side the updated Porsche Macan (which is expected to be announced later this year), the EV may not share the Macan nameplate.
According to Steiner, the "Macan Electric," as it had been called internally, is not necessarily set in stone to be the name that the vehicle launches with. To make things a bit more confusing, the upcoming EV will receive styling changes to make it more distinct—leaked photos suggest—with Taycan-inspired headlights and lack of front grille.
The size and profile of the overall vehicle is expected to closely match the Macan, hence the potential conflict whether or not to give the vehicle its own model designation.
The electric Macan is slated to premiere in 2023.
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