2014 Porsche Panamera Review
By KBB.com Editors
What's New for 2014
Despite cries from purists that a 4-door Porsche sedan was sports car heresy, the public has spoken loud and clear: the Porsche Panamera is here to stay. For 2014, Porsche ups the ante with a revised exterior showing off tighter lines, a new plug-in hybrid model and a 3.0-liter twin-turbo V6 replacing last year's V8 in the S trims. A total of nine models make up the Panamera lineup, including two new extended-wheelbase trims (4S Executive and Turbo Executive) featuring rear bucket seats divided by a full-length center console. Horsepower for the Panamera ranges from 310 all the way to 520, with the new plug-in hybrid promising a zero to 60 run in 5.2 seconds and top speed of 167 mph.
You'll Like This Car If...
If you need a sedan but crave the performance of an exotic coupe, the Porsche Panamera for 2014 is calling your name. Sure, there are numerous high-performance luxury 4-door sedans, but none can rival the Panamera's one-off good looks, unique cabin configuration or diverse model range.
You May Not Like This Car If...
There is no doubting the Panamera's performance credentials, but even in the extended wheelbase models, a rear seat built for two might not fly with some. Those who demand performance and business class-style rear-seat accommodations might be better off in an Audi S8 or Mercedes-Benz S-Class.
For 2014, the Panamera S models receive a twin-turbocharged V6 offering 20 more horsepower than the outgoing V8, while the S hybrid is replaced by a new plug-in hybrid that can be recharged via AC outlet or by the engine. The S E-Hybrid's electric motor doubles output from last year and its battery pack gains increased capacity.
Driving the Panamera
Describing the 2014 Porsche Panamera driving experience pales in comparison the actual event. Even the base model with its mere 310 horsepower V6 will take up residence in your sports...
car registry. Climb the Panamera ladder to the S and Turbo trims, and the pleasure factor rises exponentially. Step into the E-Hybrid, and your notions of "green" will be shattered in the best possible way. The most efficient model in the Panamera lineup is thrilling in its own right, with ready power in the form of gasoline, electrons, or both. Especially gratifying is the way the E-Hybrid's V6 roars to life when extra muscle is needed. At around two tons, the Panamera doesn't display the agile handling of a 911, but its spot-on steering response and overall stability are still inspiring. The Panamera's sophisticated suspension easily dispatches anything the pavement serves up, the brakes set the standard for stopping performance, and the sum is an ease of use that makes ordinary drivers feel like heroes.
On a highway, at track day, or pulling up to the valet at an overpriced restaurant, the 2014 Panamera makes a visual statement that is unmistakable as to its overall purpose in life. This thing has stage presence.
S E-HYBRID PLUG-IN HYBRID
A vast improvement over last year's hybrid model, the new S E-Hybrid features a more powerful electric motor, greater battery storage capacity, and the ability to run solely on electric power up to 85 mph for 22 miles. Even more impressive than a 2-hour charge time via a 240-volt outlet, the battery can be juiced up by the gasoline engine in E-Charge mode.
2014 Porsche Panamera Details
Because the seats in the 2014 Porsche Panamera 4-door sit low, getting in or out can take patience. The interior is a statement to Porsche luxury and technology, and fit and finish is impeccable. Seating is terrific for those in front, with plenty of space even for taller folks, but less so for those in the rear due to the sloped roof. Long-wheelbase versions add over 4.7 inches of extra legroom, which equates to VIP accommodations. Expectedly, the sound system is magnificent and there is enough technology to suit the most committed early-adopter, but we counted about 75 control functions that are reachable from the driver's seat.
While Porsche's reputation was built on the racetracks of the world and that competition heritage is certainly the single-most significant aspect of the marketing message, the unmistakable "Porsche-ness" of the exterior shapes of all the company's products ties them together like pictures on a family greeting card. Even with four doors, there is no confusing that the 2014 Panamera is a Porsche. New styling for 2014 includes a tightening of the body's lines, available LED headlights, an expanded rear trunklid with a wider glass window and an electrically deploying spoiler.
Standard equipment on the 2014 Porsche Panamera base version, besides all the usual luxury items appropriate for the price range, includes a slide/tilt moonroof, electronically-controlled shock absorbers, Porsche Stability Management, hard-drive-based navigation, an automatic liftgate, ParkAssist, Bluetooth, 8-way power front seats, and a host of additional luxury, convenience and safety features. Long-wheelbase executive models feature Adaptive air suspension and Porsche Active Suspension Management to improve both ride and handling.
With a vehicle that offers paint and leather upholstery to match provided samples, you would be correct in guessing the list of available options is lengthy. Those options include sound systems from Burmester and Bose, Porsche Rear-Seat Entertainment with swiveling 7-inch screens, Lane Change Assist, adaptive cruise control, LED headlights, thermally- and noise-insulated glass, and 4-zone automatic climate control with separate air-temperature, blower-intensity and air-distribution adjustments for each seat.
Under the Hood
For 2014, the base rear-wheel-drive (RWD) Porsche Panamera and Panamera 4 – "4" is Porsche shorthand for all-wheel drive (AWD) – are powered by a 320-horsepower 3.6-liter all-aluminum V6. The S trims receive a new twin-turbo 3.0-liter V6 good for 420 horsepower. All other models (except the S E-Hybrid) have various versions of a 4.8-liter all-aluminum V8, which varies from 440 horsepower in the Panamera GTS all the way up to 520 hp in the Turbo Executive GT. All Panamera models, except the S E-Hybrid, have a 7-speed PDK automatic transmission with manual control. The Panamera S E-Hybrid has a 3.0-liter V6 paired with an electric motor and teamed to an 8-speed Tiptronic S automatic. The total output for the S E-Hybrid is a combined 416 horsepower.
Porsche Panamera (all)
3.6-liter V6 (Panamera, Panamera 4)
310 horsepower @ 6,200 rpm
295 lb-ft of torque @ 3,750 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 18/28 (RWD), 18/27 (AWD)
3.0-liter biturbo V6 (Panamera S, Panamera 4S)
420 horsepower @ 6,000 rpm
384 lb-ft of torque @ 1,750-5,000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 17/27 mpg, 17/26 mpg (AWD, long-wheelbase Executive edition)
4.8-liter V8 (Panamera GTS)
440 horsepower @ 6,700 rpm
384 lb-ft of torque @ 3,500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 16/24 mpg
4.8-liter twin-turbocharged V8 (Panamera Turbo)
520 horsepower @ 6,000 rpm
516 lb-ft of torque @ 2,250-4,500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 15/24 mpg
4.8-liter twin-turbocharged (Panamera Turbo S)
570 horsepower @ 6,000 rpm
553 lb-ft of torque (590 lb-ft with overboost)
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 15/24 mpg
3.0-liter V6 with hybrid electric motor (Panamera S E-Hybrid)
416 horsepower @ 5,500 rpm (total system)
435 lb-ft of torque @ 1,250-4,000 rpm (total system)
EPA city/highway fuel economy: NA
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