Porsche’s first electric vehicle, the Taycan, an all-electric 4-door, will be released in 2019 and succeeded into showrooms by an electric SUV. The car’s official debut is expected to be at next year’s Frankfurt Motor Show. Although sales are yet to officially begin, the Stugattgart-based industry claims to have received over 10,000 requests from potential Taycan customers.
According to Porsche, the word Taycan has its origin in an eastern dialect and is pronounced ‘tie-can’. It means a “lively young horse” and makes a reference to the horse that has been holding up its front legs on the Porsche’s logo since 1952.
The four-door saloon format is described as a “four plus one” with space for luggage front and rear.
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In the cabin, directly ahead of the driver, there is a freestanding curved digital instrument display as in the original concept. To the right is a small toggle-style gear selector for Drive, Neutral and Reverse. A large infotainment screen, resembling the 10.1-inch unit used by Audi, sits flush within the vertical gloss finished panel that stretches across the fascia.
A second touchscreen is located in a sloped centre console separating the front seats, making the cabin almost without visible buttons. In the rear, a recessed foot well does away with battery cells in this area to create what Porsche calls a “foot garage”.
Porsche’s engineers are tight-lipped on exact driving range and battery size, but they reveal that expect upwards of 310 miles on a single charge; fast charging at up to 350kW could add 180 miles of range in nine minutes. Inductive charging is also in development, but will not be available at launch. According to Lutz Meschke, Deputy Chairman for Finance and IT at Porsche, more power and different chassis setups are all possibilities.
Initially, the yearly Taycan production output will be between 20,000 and 25,000 units. “We are capable of ramping up our production capacity substantially if demand exceeds expectations,” said Meschke. “We will be able to ship significant numbers in the coming years,” he added.
Engine and performance
Porsche is not revealing much yet about the exact specifications of the Taycan powertrain but it is understood that the car will develop over 600bhp via a lithium-ion battery pack denser than anything Tesla offers at the moment, rated at 270 watt-hours per kilogram. Two permanently excited synchronous electric motors (PSM), one on each axle, will provide drive. The PSM motors are derived from Porsche’s Le Mans winning 919 LMP1 car, the marque claiming that the key advantage offered by PSM is compact packaging and weight saving.
The German auto giant has claimed that the powertrain will allow the Taycan production car to cover 0-62mph in less than 3.5 seconds and 0-124mph in under 12 seconds before reaching a top speed of 155mph. The target is for the Porsche Taycan to exceed 310 miles on a single charge. According to Porsche, the 800-volt system can attain 62 miles of charge in just 4 minutes, or almost 250 miles in 15 minutes. However, these figures entirely depend on the availability of 350kW CCS chargers that are compatible with Porsche’s 800v system. The IONTY network is presently expanding across Europe and building chargers that can deliver such voltages. Porsche also plans to distribute 500 of its own chargers across the United States in the coming years.
“We will think of different options and there will be more than one, with different levels of power,” Porsche CEO Oliver Blume told Auto Express.
Following on from the Taycan, Porsche bosses have revealed that a fully electric SUV is likely to be modeled after the saloon. Meschke told Auto Express: “Expect an SUV BEV (battery electric vehicle) by 2022 at the latest.” An expansion of the Taycan lineup is expected as the Mission E Cross Turismo is also likely to be approved for production. “By 2030 the traditional Porsche could be a niche offering,” Meschke added.