The Porsche Taycan is widely regarded as a driver’s EV, and the World Luxury Car and World Performance Car titles at the 2020 World Car Awards are a testimony to that. And any petrol-head, or an EV-head in this case, would tell you that if you need a proper driver’s car, then it is a rear-wheel-drive car and not an all-wheel-drive car to go for. And so, the German carmaker created the entry-level Porsche Taycan RWD, as a supplementary to the Porsche Taycan AWD, which is powerful and can do more kilometres. However, at a base price of ₹ 1.50 crore (ex-showroom, India), does the Porsche Taycan RWD translate to be any less of a or even as a daily commuter for you and your family? Read on to know if the Porsche Taycan can be your family’s next electric sports car. 

The typical Porsche design is apparent here, and could even be mistaken for the Panamera because, at the end of the day, it is the electric sibling of the grand tourer.

Photo Credit: Apoorv Choudhary

Design

There is more to the Taycan than just numbers, and before we get to that bit, let’s check out the design part of Porsche’s all-electric sports car. The Taycan was originally showcased as the Mission E Concept car and has retained much of the styling from then, but Porsche’s design team managed to add even more flair to the car, and we certainly love it. The typical Porsche design is apparent here, and could even be mistaken for the Panamera because, at the end of the day, it is the electric sibling of the grand tourer.

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We love the rear section, especially the drawn-in rear C-pillar and the pronounced shoulders that look extremely sharp.

Photo Credit: Apoorv Choudhary

The Frozen Metallic Blue paint scheme looks splendid, and in fact, makes the headlights even more appealing. We like the design for housing the LED DRLs as well. From the front, it looks particularly wide and flat with its highly contoured wings, and the silhouette is shaped by the roofline sloping down to the rear. The sculpted side sections are also a strong characteristic of Porsche styling. We love the rear section, especially the drawn-in rear C-pillar and the pronounced shoulders that look extremely sharp. The glass-look Porsche lettering is a tasteful addition, integrated quite innovatively into the rear light bar. 

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Porsche Taycan gets a charging port on either side, for both AC and DC ports. 

Photo Credit: Apoorv Choudhary

Nevertheless, the most interesting element in the design of the Taycan is the charging port on the front fender, which has a cool activation process. Now, you would think, like any typical EV, for the charging cap to pop open at a tap or push of the fingers. No, it in fact opens via the black piece protruding next to the charge port, with the help of sensors. All you must do is slide your hand underneath the sensor, and the AC charging port pops open and goes into the fender, instead of swinging open like most ICE cars. The same process goes for closing the port. Quite ingenious and slick if you ask us. And did we mention that the car gets a charging port on the other side as well, with both AC and DC capability?

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The glass-look Porsche lettering is a tasteful addition, integrated quite innovatively into the rear light bar. 

Photo Credit: Apoorv Choudhary

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Tech and Interior

Next, we step inside the Porsche Taycan. There is a lot going on here, so we will take you through all the elements inside the Taycan that we find exciting. Once you get in the car and want to start it, like all Porsches, you can do that from the right side of the steering wheel, as the start button is somewhat hidden behind the stalks and in fact took us a couple of minutes to locate it. The gear lever is mounted on the dashboard, on the left side of the steering wheel, and is a tiny unit that toggles between R, N, and D, while the Park is a button on the side. If you ask us, this is slightly odd, but then again, we are inside a futuristic car. Nevertheless, if you were wondering that there must be something important added to the middle, where traditionally, a gear selector finds a place, then you will be amazed to know that this spot is taken up by cup holders, yes, that too a sizeable portion allotted. You also get a centre console storage area with a wireless charging port inside, as well as space for other titbits.

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The screens on the Porsche Taycan are all touch-based. 

Photo Credit: Apoorv Choudhary

Porsche has done away with most of the buttons on the Taycan and replaced them with four screens, three at the front, (the co-passenger screen is optional) and one at the rear, all are touch-based and control almost every aspect of the car. The first screen is an 8.4-inch, vertically positioned display north of the centre console that exhibits basic and frequently used commands such as climate control, but isn’t quite responsive to light touch, and requires a heavy tap. The bottom half of the screen shows the battery consumption of the Taycan and comes in quite handy. The other image on the screen is of a car that displays automatic /closings such as the charging port, the hood, and the boot.

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The 16.8- curved driver display is surrounded by panels with controls for selecting lighting and chassis functions. The edges have touch functionality. 

Photo Credit: Apoorv Choudhary

Apart from this, the screen also doubles up as an add-on for the upper screen in case you don’t want to move your arm all the way up to the main screen. Quite superfluous if you ask us, but seemingly cool, nonetheless. The camera button shows a 360-degree view of the car’s surrounding onto the 10.9- central display that can be individually configured, allowing direct access to important functionalities. Here, you get to play around with different elements of the car such as Navigation, Media, Phone, Apps, Driving Assists, control of the music system, and control vehicle settings as well.

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The 10.9- central display can be individually configured, allowing direct access to important functionalities.

Photo Credit: Apoorv Choudhary

Now, we get to the third screen of the Taycan, which is a 16.8- curved display surrounded by panels with controls for selecting lighting and chassis functions. What we find interesting here, is that the display is partly a touch screen, and you can control the different levels of lighting on the left side. A tap on the specific lighting will turn it on, and completely removes the use of a physical button to control this feature. The right side of this screen, similarly, controls the chassis functionalities. The middle portion of this screen though is not touch-based but is customisable from a switch on the steering wheel. Otherwise, the middle screen consists of three round configurable instruments in the virtual arrangement.

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The gear lever is mounted on the dashboard, on the left side of the steering wheel.

Photo Credit: Apoorv Choudhary

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Porsche gets all the points here for clothing the car with top-notch material. Everything feels wonderful, stitched well, put together quite brilliantly, and even eclipsing some of the other premium EVs available in the market right now. The seats have a sporty touch to them but are quite comfortable with more than adequate bolstering for under-thigh, and back support. At the back, the individual captain seats are adequate for two persons, and even more so for a family of four. And if you are adventurous enough, then take your family on to the track, at your own risk, of course.

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At the back, the individual captain seats are adequate for two persons, and even more so for a family of four.

Photo Credit: Apoorv Choudhary

But that’s not even the first thing you’ll notice when you get on the rear seats, because pan your head upwards, and a massive, tinted glass panel will leave you mesmerised. This, though, is fixed to the roof and doesn’t open, nor does it have a visor to restrict the scorching sun dropping down on you. Then there’s the fourth touchscreen that operates the air conditioning for the rear passengers.

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The fourth screen operates air conditioning for the rear passengers.

Photo Credit: Apoorv Choudhary

Electric Motor

The Taycan, with its rear-wheel-drive system, is best known to hold the record for the longest drift by any electric car. Porsche did 210 laps, about 42.171 km, on a special drift circuit at Germany’s Hockenheim. Yes, the base version of the Taycan is a rear-wheel-drive model and, is also the most affordable in the range. It is also the one that we are driving today. It would be unfair to compare it with its high-performance like the Turbo, the Turbo S, or even the 4S. But Porsche has made sure that this version doesn’t lose out on performance either.

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The base version of the Taycan is a rear-wheel-drive model and, is also the most affordable in the range.

Photo Credit: Apoorv Choudhary

And so, Porsche is offering the Taycan RWD with a single-deck 79.2 kWh Performance Battery as standard, as well as an optional larger double-decked 93.4kWh Performance Battery Plus that sets you back by ₹ 8.32 lakh for extended 480 km of range. The smaller battery pack, however, is good enough for 312 km, sufficient for city commutes in our opinion. Long drives will have to be well planned. Power output on the Taycan is 321 bhp which in our opinion is passable for lifting this 2,125 kg EV spaceship. Under the short boosts using launch control, the engine can maximise its output to 402 bhp.

Ride & Handling

So, what is this Taycan like to drive? Well, the first thing we noticed is the steering wheel, and it is accurate and weighs up nicely. Compared to the other Taycan with motors at the front, the rear axle setup works much better in retrospect, exactly how I like my sports cars. The handling too is magical and grips itself quite well in a straight line. Although, the 2-speed gearbox has a shorter thrust for maximum acceleration, and takes about 5 seconds, to go from zero to 100 kmph, which is brisk rather than neck-snapping. But the advantage of being an EV gives you the ability to instantly overtake or even jump into a corner swiftly. I think it is every bit as quick as you need it to be, and not just for the daily commute.

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The handling too is magical and grips itself quite well in corners. 

Photo Credit: Apoorv Choudhary

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I also like the fact that there is adequate power and torque despite being low on both aspects. In fact, it allows the throttle response to be more natural and doesn’t come as jerky at all. The regenerative braking on the other hand is quite interesting, as Porsche doesn’t use the one-pedal system, but instead has sort of synced the regeneration and actual braking into a dual process, which would only come into play if the pedal were pressed hard on to the metal. This way, acceleration isn’t really disrupted but instead slows you down enough to execute the next step without losing the thrust.

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I also like the fact that there is adequate power and torque despite being low on both aspects.

Photo Credit: Apoorv Choudhary

Responses on the different driving modes are pleasurable but it is the Sport mode that I find myself the most content in. But it also means that the battery would get depleted sooner. Speaking of drive modes, Porsche has added a nice touch of vroom sound to it so as to make it more engaging, as you toggle between Range, Normal, Sport, and Sport Plus modes. It isn’t exactly what you get from an ICE Porsche, but nevertheless, is in tune with what the car is doing and doesn’t sound pretentious.

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Porsche Taycan allows switching between drive modes offering different tuning of the suspension. 

Photo Credit: Apoorv Choudhary

Verdict

Compared to its aggressive siblings, this younger apprentice is worth the buy. Apart from a four-wheel-drive train, there is nothing in the Taycan that will let you down. The linear acceleration is three seconds slower than the 4S Turbo is something that would enable this sports car to easily fit in as a neighborhood-friendly car without having to lose out on its track cred.

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Compared to its aggressive siblings, this younger apprentice is worth the buy. 

Photo Credit: Apoorv Choudhary

Comments

Porsche always impresses us with its interior, and the case is the same here with plush interiors, intuitive displays, and plastics making it worth the cost. Although the car can be upgraded with user preferences and may end up a bit more than its base cost, this vehicle can be defined as a true electric sports car, and possibly the best EV on sale in the Indian market!

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