Porsche's Turbo Suv Gets More Boost And A Hefty Price Bump
Motor Trend|February 2020
Porsche’s Turbo SUV gets more boost and a hefty price bump, but where’s the urgency?
Derek Powell

What does the concept of a Porsche Turbo mean to you? For me, it’s about nailing the throttle and experiencing acceleration so mind-bending that I can’t breathe. Turbo pins you back in your seat, scrambles your synapses, makes you laugh while you cry. You gasp for air because the intakes have removed all oxygen from the atmosphere. Turbo plays with your emotions so thoroughly that spending $50,000 over an S trim on a 911 or Cayenne seems totally justifiable.

Nobody knows this better than Porsche itself, which has recently defied all conventional logic by affixing this storied moniker to the decidedly not-turbocharged Taycan electric vehicle. And in doing so, Porsche is reminding us that if you’re looking for no-holds-barred performance, go for Turbo.

It’s a curious conundrum, then, that the 2020 Macan Turbo doesn’t instantly create this level of desire. Yes, it’s quicker than the previous model, and a 0–60 time of 4.1 seconds places it just a smidge behind a base 911, but somehow it fails to deliver on the chest-bursting exhilaration of its more expensive (and admittedly more powerful) brother.

So what’s the discrepancy? Perhaps it’s less a question of thrust than of character. After it sat on the sidelines for 2019, the Macan Turbo returns with a new heart in the form of a 2.9-liter twin-turbo V-6, an engine that also sees duty in the Cayenne S and Panamera S. Here, it pumps out 434 hp, 34 more than the previous 3.6-liter V-6 it replaces. Torque is down a negligible 1 lb-ft, to 405, but it’s also delivered on an impressively flat curve from 1,800 to 5,500 rpm. Top speed has increased 3 mph, to 167. So far, so good.

Give it the ol’ Turbo test, however, and that’s when the Macan delivers the goods without rearranging your organs. Thanks to that flat torque curve, impressive shove is available practically anytime you ask for it. The recalibrated seven-speed dual-clutch transmission and standard all-wheel-drive work seamlessly together in putting down the power. Yet all that effortless punch of momentum is delivered with a cold, anodyne efficiency. I’m left wanting for drama.

Continue reading your story on the app

Continue reading your story in the magazine

MORE STORIES FROM MOTOR TRENDView All

THREE - PEAT

THE RAM BRAND DOES IT AGAIN WITH ITS STELLAR PICKUP PLATFORM RUN RIOT

10+ mins read
Motor Trend
February 2021

Opposite Lockdown: Rediscovering the romance of the road

We hit the road the hour before dawn, the Aston Martin DB11 V8 limbering up nicely as we cruised toward the coast and EuroTunnel train that would take us under the English Channel.

3 mins read
Motor Trend
February 2021

MISSION ACCOMPLISHED

AN S-CLASS SHOULD BE A STATEMENT OF EXCELLENCE AND TECHNICAL EXPERTISE. IT DELIVERS ON ALL COUNTS.

7 mins read
Motor Trend
February 2021

Mike Koval Jr

Head of Ram Brand, FCA North America

4 mins read
Motor Trend
February 2021

KEEP ON TRUCKING

NOT EVEN A PANDEMIC CAN STOP AMERICA'S LOVE AFFAIR WITH THE PICKUP TRUCK

10+ mins read
Motor Trend
February 2021

COME- BACK

RANDY POBST RECOUNTS HIS EPIC PIKES PEAK CRASH AND HOW THE UNPLUGGED PERFORMANCE TEAM GAVE HIM A SECOND CRACK AT GLORY

6 mins read
Motor Trend
February 2021

FASHIONABLE GLAMPING

AN IDIOSYNCRATIC ICON DELIVERS THE AURA OF CLASSIC RV LIFE, BUT AT A COST

6 mins read
Motor Trend
February 2021

2022 Hyundai Tucson

Bold Design Goes Mainstream

3 mins read
Motor Trend
February 2021

2022 GMC Hummer EV Pickup

An Off-Road Icon Reborn

4 mins read
Motor Trend
February 2021

2020 Land Rover Defender 110 D240

Is the Diesel More Desirable?

2 mins read
Motor Trend
February 2021
RELATED STORIES

MINE'S THE PORSCHE - ON TEST // ELAN GT6

IT’S NOT JUST ABOUT THE BADGE: WHY PORSCHE BECAME INVOLVED IN THE DESIGN OF ELAN’S NEW FLAGSHIP

10+ mins read
Yachting World
December 2020

The Porsche Design Acer Book RS brings sports-car flair to the laptop

With a name like that, it has a reputation to uphold.

3 mins read
PCWorld
December 2020

Sports Cars For the Wrist: Porsche Design Custom-Built Timepieces Program

The user has the opportunity to customize the signature element of the self-winding movement, the new COSC chronometer-certified Caliber WERK 01.100, developed in-house at Porsche Design Timepieces AG in Switzerland.

2 mins read
Watch Time
September - October 2020

Maisto Datsun 240Z

Stock and tuned Zs that deliver big bang for your buck

5 mins read
Die Cast X
Holiday 2020

WHY ELECTRIC VEHICLE RANGES VARY FROM EPA ESTIMATE

You’ve probably heard the phrase “your mileage may vary” with regard to how your real-world fuel economy compares to the EPA estimate. The adage refers to gasoline-powered vehicles, but the same applies to electric vehicles.

3 mins read
AppleMagazine
September 25,2020

POWER SURGE

From supercars to superminis and reborn classics to high-tech saloons, 2020 will see a huge array of new cars vying for your attention

5 mins read
Business Traveler
July/August 2020

Replicarz George Follmer 1972 AMC Javelin and 1974 Shadow DN4

Stellar Pair of Racers from the Super Sub’s Stable

7 mins read
Die Cast X
Fall 2020

OttOmobile Honda S2000 Type S

Sharper Edged Club Racing Roadster

4 mins read
Die Cast X
Fall 2020

GT Spirit Porsche 911 (964) Speedster Turbo-Look

One of Zuffenhausen’s rarest was by request only

4 mins read
Die Cast X
Summer 2020

CMF Porsche 989 Prototype

A sophisticated sedan that was a bit before its time

4 mins read
Die Cast X
Summer 2020