Newly redesigned Porsche Panamera astonishes us with its sporting spirit and luxurious comfort that is ideal for everyday drive.
When you are offered the opportunity to drive an automotive masterpiece, you don’t just say yes, you jump at the chance with excitement. We all felt the enthusiasm when our Auto Team was offered the chance to test drive the new Porsche Panamera. This modern marvel not only drives like a dream but it turns heads, and that is just what we intended to do as the whole team embarked on being part of the review.
I was excited to be first in the team to take the Porsche Panamera for a solid test run. The beautiful Georgia from our fashion team couldn’t resist coming along for the ride and Rashid, from our photography team, envisioned the photo shoot and insisted on leading the photography to capture the Porsche Panamera in all its glory.
Lucky for us, Porsche Centre Kuwait – Behbehani Motors Company invited us to test drive this vehicle for three days in order to fully examine how this luxurious saloon concept is handled in typical driving conditions. We cruised the Arabian Gulf Street and spotted spectacular locations to portrait the Porsche Panamera. What follows is my (rather our Auto Team’s) account of experiencing the Porsche Panamera – a true automotive dream for me and my fellow colleagues.
A New Concept and Design
First, to understand the Porsche Panamera, you must consider its development. It was designed from the ground up and is a mix of sports car and luxury vehicle all in one. There’s a new engine, transmission, chassis and display and operating concept to take into account – and they certainly don’t disappoint.
The Porsche Panamera is a four-door vehicle, which doesn’t diminish its sporty appeal. It adds more convenience and makes it feel quite roomy in its interior. There is 1304 L of luggage space and a tailgate as well as folding seats – plenty of room when you consider its sportiness. We all fit nicely inside and had plenty of room to sit back, relax and enjoy the ride.
The look of the Porsche Panamera exceeds expectations as it has that classic Porsche style with a new faster roof line – the flyline as Porsche refers to it. You also have to appreciate the flared shoulders and nice athletic flanks that give the Porsche Panamera a strong build that is iconic to its 911 design. The body is a steel/aluminum hybrid construction while the door panels, hood, trunk lid, wings, side panels and roof all integrating aluminum for a sleek modern look that is lightweight and aerodynamic.
Plenty of Detail in Its Development
Every last detail was thought of when creating the new Porsche Panamera. Porsche really delivered on this vehicle, giving saloon drivers a sporty vehicle that still appeals to their tastes. It extends the boundaries of what is possible with a sports car and proves that it’s a car you want to drive long distances in and really take to the road to feel the power and punch this vehicle packs.
For starters, there is more interior room as the Porsche Panamera is 5049 mm long, 1937 mm wide and 1423 mm high. It pays homage to the Porsche 911 and allows passengers to fit quite comfortably inside. We had a great experience as the full Auto Team came along for the ride. Porsche bills the vehicle as the ultimate everyday use vehicle and we wholeheartedly agree as the Porsche Panamera offers all the room you would need to run errands, haul passengers, and embark on long trips in absolute comfort and luxury.
Porsche carefully redesigned the new Panamera generation with an intensified attribute of sportiness and luxury. The front wheels are shifted forward to allow for what it calls a prestige dimension. This adds to the concept of the Porsche Panamera and really maintains that true Porsche look.
Bring On The Power
Under the hood is where things really get interesting as the Porsche Panamera has three engine options for the road, with increased power and equally increased efficiency. We drove the Porsche Panamera (V6) that was powered by a mighty 2.9 L petrol engine rated 330 hp. This engine roared as we experienced its acceleration in 5.5 seconds, while activating the Sport Chrono Package option. It provided plenty of torque and performance no matter the terrain we encountered. We loved the feel of the powertrain as it offered all the handling and power you would expect from a sports car without the inertia that a luxury vehicle can sometimes incorporate.
For the Porsche Panamera Turbo, owners will get an extra boost of power with a four-litre V8 petrol engine that really has some get up and go. It delivers 550 hp, giving it almost 200 hp of additional power over the Panamera (V6) – it’s got some serious kick to it. Porsche didn’t disappoint its diesel enthusiasts either as it offers the Porsche Panamera 4S Diesel with a drivetrain that is just as capable. The diesel engine offers 422 hp with a four-litre displacement in a V8 configuration.
In all the above engine options, a newly developed transmission is outfitted and coupled to the powertrain. This Porsche dual-clutch transmission (PDK) has a whopping eight speeds and all-wheel drive in all models offered under the Porsche Panamera umbrella. The powertrain is situated within a new chassis design that has a broader spread that is designed to allow it to really hug those turns. A new rear axle steering aids in the overall driving capabilities and a three-chamber air suspension cushions the ride. You literally feel the difference while driving, as it is comfortable yet grips the road during your ride.
The Porsche Panamera incorporates the Porsche Dynamic Chassis Control Sport with Porsche Torque Vectoring Plus. These performance systems are all controlled via the 4D Chassis Control and networked together with the additional chassis systems for a complete package that outperforms at every turn. The redesigned Porsche Panamera is also fitted with 19-inch wheels on the Porsche Panamera 4S and 4S Diesel with larger 20-inch wheels on the Turbo model.
Moving to the interior of the Porsche Panamera, you have an all-new Porsche Advanced Cockpit with literally everything you are looking for to control the vehicle, enhance its performance and improve your ride. This state-of-the-art system integrates a black panel with a dynamic styling that really allows the interactive display to standout, especially at night. There is a combination of visually appealing and intuitive operation for your smartphone with multifunctional vehicle control. We really had some fun exploring the InnoDrive and Night Vision Assist systems.
Porsche really delivered on its promise to make the Porsche Panamera a vehicle you want to drive. The electronic offerings were designed to be distraction free and not take away from the performance of the vehicle. It’s still all about the ride with this vehicle and we really found this to be true as we drove the Porsche Panamera. We were able to easily use the intuitive electronics without them feeling cumbersome or taking over the ride of the vehicle. They performed as we expected and really provided an enhancement to the vehicle as we drove.
The electronic offerings are really designed for increased convenience. They integrate well with the dash display but allow you to focus on the road and the feel of driving the Porsche Panamera. The onboard display is responsive, quick and easy to use. It is the most digitized version of a Porsche offered by the company and still pays a strong respect to what the Porsche name stands for – ultimate driving capabilities.
Inside the vehicle cockpit, you’ll find the Porsche Communication Management at the gear console. This uses a 12.3-inch touch display that uses user touch for operation. Operating just like a tablet, the Porsche Communication Management system provides smooth navigation and amazingly recognizes handwriting in case you have to jot a quick note such as your destination address. This quaint feature impresses and gives you plenty of flexibility when needed.
You can hop on the internet with the Porsche Connect Plus. This interacts with the Porsche Communication Management and uses Apple CarPlay and the Porsche Car Connect app. You can control this system from your smartphone or Apple Watch. Also, it includes capabilities such as security services, roadside assistance, automatic emergency calling, and car finder services. It has a SIM card reader and wireless internet for your passengers and real-time traffic information, which is perfect for everyday driving. Everything you need from the Porsche Connect Plus is there as it literally provides you access to the digital world.
When you are driving the Porsche Panamera nothing is better than cranking up the tunes and hitting the open road. We found the entertainment system for the Porsche Panamera just added to the overall driving experience as it has 10 loudspeakers and 150 watts of music power. There is also the option to kick this music system up a notch with the Burmester system with 20 directly driven loudspeakers and an active subwoofer. The Porsche Panamera also includes two USB charging ports to keep your digital devices powered as they connect with the Porsche Connect Plus system.
Your passengers will also enjoy their own entertainment experience as the Porsche Panamera offers two 10-inch touchscreens at the back of the front seats. This allows for a separate entertainment option for passengers with a touchscreen functionality and Bluetooth headphone capabilities. There is an SD card input, jukebox, CD/DVD drive, and USB stick plug-ins. Passengers can also listen to their own music separate from the driver as well as use GPS navigation from these touchscreens. There is also access to the Google Play Store that kept Rashid busy for quite some time as we drove. The touchscreens in the rear of the Porsche Panamera also provide for video calls and chats and have an internal flash memory.
Light It Up
Adding to the appearance of the Porsche Panamera is new LED headlights that provide plenty of visibility while looking the part of the vehicle. In the Porsche Panamera Turbo, the Porsche Dynamic Light System is included. There are also LED rear lights that illuminate the back of the Porsche Panamera and a rain sensor, automatic truck lid for added convenience, and an interior online navigation system, so you never get lost. We explored this quite a bit to get a feel of how the new digital systems work on the Porsche Panamera. It worked as expected and lulled us into relaxation with its calming directions. This is a feature that Porsche Panamera owners will get plenty of use out of.
There are a keyless engine starting system and part-leather seats that are just as comfortable as you would imagine. We felt right at home in this Porsche Panamera from Porsche Centre Kuwait Many thanks to them for offering us the ride.
Make It Your Own
While the Porsche Panamera we drove was white, Porsche offers the vehicle in a total of 12 colours. There are the standard white and black and two special colours with the Carmine Red and GT Silver Metallic. Other body colours also include a Carrara White, Deep Black, Vulcan Grey, Rhodium Silver, Sapphire Blue, Night Blue, Agate Grey, and Mahogany. This really allows you to custom pick the body colour of choice.
These colours can be matched with 10 different interior colours and leathers. Choose from Black, Agate Grey, Luxor Beige, Marsala, and Saddle Brown as well as five two-tone colour combinations. You also have the options of part-leather seats in the Porsche Panamera 4S and 4S Diesel while the Porsche Panamera is featured with leather upholstery and all leather seats.
Porsche also offers the ability to paint your Porsche Panamera in any colour you can imagine through its Porsche Exclusive Manufaktur option. This allows for complete personalization of your Porsche Panamera and can give it that finishing touch you have imagined forever.
The Porsche Panamera we drove was standard white with Marsala interior. The contract was impeccable, and we loved the sporty feel it gave to the vehicle. Our Auto Team was impressed with the lavishness of the interior as much as we were with the outward appearance of the Porsche Panamera.
After driving the Porsche Panamera, our Auto Team had to admit it really was a vehicle that we aspired to. For myself, it gave plenty of sport when I wanted it, yet would be functional as an everyday vehicle when I needed it. There was plenty of room and of course the new engine power delivered in all respects.
Cruising the streets in the Porsche Panamera did turn heads as we expected and we appreciated every wave that was delivered our way. This automotive marvel is a new entry for Porsche, but it looks promising for the company as vehicle owners will be able to retain the elements that they love about a Porsche with an updated twist. We have to admit; this was one test vehicle that we had a hard time letting go of. We drove the Porsche Panamera down to the last minute when we had to give it back to Porsche Centre Kuwait. We really didn’t want to let go of this beauty.
Overall the Porsche Panamera scored high marks with our Auto Team. There wasn’t an area that we could see that Porsche didn’t already improve, make better, or enhance. Porsche really thought of everything when it came to design the new generation of the Porsche Panamera. It has plenty of power as well as grace as it hits the road. You can feel the difference with its new transmission, and the all-wheel drive is a nice standard feature to improve handling in extreme weather conditions.
The verdict on the Porsche Panamera across our Auto Team was unanimous as the Porsche Panamera was a vehicle that we’d all love to own and have as a part of our automotive portfolio. Its style impresses on first glance, and its performance rides like a true Porsche only enhanced by the modern technology that the company has equipped into the design.
The interior of the Porsche Panamera shines and you’ll feel the luxury as you drive. This is one vehicle that will be hard to say no to as it literally drives you towards it with its look and keeps you coming back to it with its drivability. You’ll want to say yes to the Porsche Panamera as this is a vehicle you’ll be proud to drive, have as your own, and above all, fall in love with. We promise!
Model: Georgia (@georgia_canavan)
Photographer & Videography: Rashid Al-Nuaimi (@rashidpvg)
Behind The Scenes: Hamad AlAinati (@7mdphotography)
Creative Director: Jameel Arif – (@jameelarif)
Car: Porsche Panamera – Porsche Centre Kuwait (@porschecentrekuwait)