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New Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid uses green technology to improve performance

Friday, February 24, 2017

Photos courtesy Porsche

We thought 620 horsepower was a lot when the 911 GT2 RS launched in 2011. But cars have come a long way since then, with a handful of the fastest employing some form of gasoline-electric hybrid drive. That’s how Porsche’s last supercar made 887 hp and how its current LMP1-class race car puts out around 900 hp. So, it should come as no surprise that the newest iteration of the Panamera — a hybrid with a 550-hp 4.0-liter V8 and 136-hp electric motor — will become the line’s top-performing flagship model.

Above: Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid

Porsche announced the 2018 Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid yesterday, ahead of its debut at the Geneva International Motor Show, and states the drivetrain’s combined output is 680 hp and 626 pound-feet of torque. That makes it the second most powerful road-going Porsche ever, capable of 0-60 miles per hour in 3.2 seconds, Porsche says, and a top speed of 192 mph. Though EPA fuel economy numbers are not yet available, the New European Driving Cycle (NEDC) says it will consume 0.77 gallons of fuel per 62 miles, far less than the 2.5 gallons it would take the Panamera Turbo to cover the same distance. Curiously absent is a non-hybrid Panamera Turbo S…

The Turbo S E-Hybrid can be driven using electric power alone, but the lithium ion battery has only enough juice for a maximum of 31 miles, according to Porsche. When the battery is drained, the car will automatically switch on the V8.

As with previous Turbo S models, the Turbo S E-Hybrid comes with a ton of standard equipment. Adjustable air suspension with active shock absorbers, ceramic composite brakes, active anti-roll bars, a torque vectoring system, Sport Chrono Package, and Power Steering Plus all make the list. And if you choose the Executive edition, expect even more, such as a wheelbase extended 5.9 inches, rear-axle steering, eight-way power rear seats with “comfort” headrests, and four-zone climate control.

Above: Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Executive

It’s too early to tell if Porsche is establishing a new trend for its top-performing flagship vehicles — hybridization — but the absence of a non-hybrid Panamera Turbo S has us wondering. After years of downsizing and using hybrid technology with the goal of improving fuel economy, it’s refreshing to see an automaker upsize a hybrid with the goal of improving performance.

[UPDATED: We reached out to and received comment from a Porsche spokesperson regarding the Turbo S E-Hybrid's place in the Panamera lineup. He told us he was not aware of any plans for a model to slot between the Turbo and Turbo S E-Hybrid, adding that, “In this case, the hybrid powertrain serves as the performance benefactor for the top model as part of Porsche's E-Performance strategy.”]

The Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid starts at $184,400, while the Executive edtion starts at $194,800, excluding the $1,050 delivery fee. Expect to see them in Porsche showrooms later this year.

Porsche Press Release

2018 Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid debuts as the most powerful Panamera ever

World premiere in Geneva: Second hybrid variant of the Panamera introduced

ATLANTA, Feb. 23, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- With the 2018 Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid, Porsche is introducing a plug-in hybrid as the flagship of the model line for the first time. Combining the 4.0-liter V8 engine from the Panamera Turbo with an electric motor, the Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid delivers a total output of 680 hp and 626 lb.-ft. of torque. Only the limited production 918 Spyder has ever had more power. The Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid accelerates from 0 to 60 mph in 3.2 seconds (3.3 seconds for the Executive model) and has a top track speed of 192 mph. According to the New European Driving Cycle, the average fuel consumption is 2.9 liters per 100 kilometers, and the new top-model Panamera can drive on fully electric power for up to 50 kilometers. EPA-rated fuel economy and range will be available closer to launch.

Unique drive concept with V8 engine and electric motor
After the successful debut of the Panamera 4 E-Hybrid – which uses a twin-turbo V6 engine combined with an electric motor – the Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid is another compelling demonstration of the performance advantages of hybrid technology. The new Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid utilizes a boost strategy derived from the 918 Spyder and combines a 136 hp electric motor with a 550 hp twin-turbo V8 engine. The decoupler installed in the Porsche hybrid module is actuated electromechanically by an electric clutch actuator (ECA), just like in the Panamera 4 E-Hybrid. This ensures quick response and exceptional comfort. Like other Panamera models, the quick-shifting eight-speed Porsche Doppelkupplung (PDK) dual-clutch transmission sends power to the standard active all-wheel drive system with Porsche Traction Management (PTM).

The electric motor is powered via a liquid-cooled lithium-ion battery with an energy capacity of 14.1 kWh. The high-voltage battery takes 12 hours to fully charge via a common 120 V, 10 amp connection. If the optional 7.2 kW on-board charger is utilized instead of the standard 3.6 kW unit, the charging time decreases to less than three hours with a 240 V, 40 amp connection. The charging process can also be started using a timer via Porsche Communication Management (PCM) or the Porsche Connect app (for smartphones and Apple Watch). Moreover, the Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid is fitted with auxiliary air conditioning to cool or heat the passenger compartment prior to driving.

Connectivity and comfort at your fingertips
The console between the driver and the front passenger is dominated by the 12.3-inch touchscreen of the next generation Porsche Communication Management (PCM) system. The driver and front passenger can set the configuration for this display individually. Integrated into the PCM are features such as navigation, the online functions of Porsche Connect Plus and smartphone integration via Apple® Car Play. The control panel with touch-sensitive switches on the center console enables intuitive control of various functions.

Three-way combination of sports car performance, comfort on long trips and efficiency
Performance, comfort and efficiency form a perfect three-way combination. The Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid comes with air suspension as standard and offers a unique balance in this segment: the comfort of a luxury sedan paired with the performance of a sports car. The Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid starts in the purely electric "E-Power" mode, and is capable of covering up to 50 kilometers on pure electric power according to the New European Driving Cycle (NEDC). When a specific pressure point on the accelerator pedal is reached, or when the battery charge drops below a minimum level, the Panamera switches to "Hybrid Auto" mode, at which point the total system is available. Consumption in the New European Driving Cycle (NEDC) amounts to 2.9 l/100 km. EPA-rated fuel economy and range will be available closer to launch.

Debut with two wheelbases
Celebrating its world premiere at the Geneva Motor Show (March 7 to 19, 2017), the 2018 Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid is expected to reach U.S. dealers by the end of 2017. It will also be offered in an Executive version with a 5.9 inch longer wheelbase. Standard equipment on the Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid includes Porsche Ceramic Composite Brakes (PCCB), Porsche Dynamic Chassis Control Sport (PDCC Sport) including Porsche Torque Vectoring Plus (PTV Plus), Power Steering Plus and Sport Chrono Package. Auxiliary air-conditioning, adaptive aerodynamic elements and a three-chamber air suspension including Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM) are also standard. The Executive version is additionally equipped with rear axle steering, 8-way power rear seats with comfort head rests, and 4 – zone climate control. Both models are equipped with 21- inch 911 Turbo Design Wheels. The price for the 2018 Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid will be $184,400, while the Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Executive will start at $194,800. These prices exclude the $1,050 delivery, processing and handling fee.

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