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2015 Porsche Macan unveiled at the 2013 Los Angeles Auto Show

By Bob Nagy on November 20, 2013 7:54 AM
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With the world debut of its all-new 2015 Porsche Macan, the automaker makes a most impressive entry into the premium compact SUV field. Baby brother to the highly-regarded Cayenne, the Macan was designed to deliver the same kind of on/off-road versatility as that benchmark model in a smaller and more affordable package that also boasts the dynamic character of a world-class sports car. On sale here next spring, this new Porsche will be offered in Macan S and Macan Turbo models, each fitted with a potent force-fed V6 engine, 7-speed PDK dual-clutch automatic transmission and the latest version of the Porsche Traction Management (PTM) system that includes all-wheel drive.

Although exhibiting a clear visual kinship with the Cayenne, the exterior styling of the 2015 Porsche Macan also embodies numerous character cues from the current 911 and even incorporates elements of the new design language being introduced on the upcoming 918 supercar which is particularly evident in its LED-infused front/rear lighting treatments. Short overhangs, a wide stance and a low sweeping roofline that ends in a black decklid spoiler contribute to a powerful curbside presence which is complemented by standard staggered-width tires- 235/55 front and 255/50/rear - on 19-inch alloy wheels that nicely fill its flared fenderwells. 

The Macan's name comes from the Indonesian word for tiger. While this new Porsche is loosely based on the same platform architecture that underpins the current Audi Q5 and Volkswagen Touareg, the Macan retains a 110.5-inch wheelbase which the automaker comprehensively reworked the body structure to impart a unique enthusiast-grade feel to this new SUV that leaves no doubt as to its pedigree. The Macan's stiffer core is matched with a sport-tuned suspension that comes in three distinct flavors. The S model features a conventional steel spring design while the Turbo adds Porsche Active Suspension Management that brings Comfort/Sport/Sport Plus programmable shocks to the mix - offered as an option on the Macan S model. The Macan also will be available with the segment's first air suspension system that provides greater compliance as well as three different levels of ride height  -- and 9.1-inches of maximum ground clearance -- to better accommodate both on-road performance driving and off-road rambling. 

Also: More first looks from the 2013 Los Angeles Auto Show

Precise directional control in the Macan is served up by a new, energy-efficient electro-mechanical power steering system which can also be linked to the vehicle's available lane-keep assist feature. The powerful disc brakes on the S give way to even larger alternatives on the Turbo, but both models feature a new multi-collision brake function that swings into effect following a crash to reduce kinetic energy and minimize the protential for a second impact. Functioning as a rear-drive system until traction conditions warrant otherwise, the Macan's PTM all-wheel drive works with the Porsche Stability Management (PSM) system and also incorporates Automatic Brake Differential (ABD) and Anti-Slip Regulation (ASR) features. It can be further enhanced with an optional Porsche Torque Vectoring Plus (PTV Plus) system that's been specifically tailored to this application. 

Beneath its wraparound clamshell-style hood, the 2015 Porsche Macan S packs a 340-horsepower/3.0-liter twin-turbo V6 that can send it blitzing from 0-60 mph in 5.2 seconds. Fitted with the first T-charged version of Porsche's 3.6-liter V6, the Macan Turbo boasts 400 horses and can hit that benchmark pace in just 4.6 ticks. For those who need just a bit more quickness, the optional Sport Chrono package with its Launch Control feature will trim 0.2 seconds off of both intervals. All Macans also come with a Sport button that revises engine and transmission mapping to add a bit more edge to their responses. And while performance is in its blood, this new Porsche SUV also has a greener side. In addition to underbody fairings that help trim aero drag, both versions feature Auto Start Stop, intelligent thermal/electrical management and a "coasting" feature in the PDK transmission. Other welcomed features include a button-activated off-road mode that prepares the powertrain and suspension for getting down and dirty as well as a programmable Porsche Hill Control system that automatically regulates speed on descents.  

Also: 10 Best SUVs Under $25,000 for 2014

The well-finished cabin of the new Macan reflects the latest in the Porsche's design thinking. Driver focused, as always, it features a more upright multifunction steering wheel on an adjustable column and standard 8-way power front buckets on the S model that are replaced by 18-way Adaptive sport seats on the Macan Turbo. Key standard features include a highly legible main instrument cluster, 7-inch color central touchscreen display, 11-speaker/235-watt CDR audio system, a power-activated liftgate and a 40/20/40 split-folding rear seat that expands capacity of the cargo bay from 17 to 53 cu ft. The Turbo also comes with Porsche Communications Management that brings a touchscreen navigation system and a 40GB hard drive. Beyond Bose and range-topping Burmester audio upgrades, Macan buyers will be able to fit their vehicles with a two-piece panoramic glass roof. Other significant upgrades include radar-based adaptive cruise control, lane-keep and lane-change assists, Porsche Active Safe driver warning system, Porsche Car Connect and the corner-following Porsche Dynamic Lighting System.

Pricing for the 2015 Porsche Macan S and Macan Turbo will be announced closer to their on-sale dates. However, it's believed the Macan S will start around $50,000 and the Turbo is likely to command an additional $20,000 or so. 

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