The scent of Premium Alcantara/leather enlivens your senses the moment you step inside the new Porsche Macan SUV and it’s wunderbar.
Despite only being launched into the automotive world around five years ago, the sporty Porsche Macan has certainly more than simply ingratiated itself into the performance marque’s family. Smaller than the Cayenne, larger than the Panamera and more practical than the iconic 911, the Macan is a model that many hold as a category benchmark, phew, so how do you improve on that? Well Porsche NZ gave me the keys to their MY19 to find out.
My model was the 2L, 4 cylinder turbo-charged version (I’ll get to the engine soon), dressed in Dolomite metallic silver. The first thing you notice is its leaner design and greater family resemblance. The nose and tail have greater horizontal line emphasis, giving off a more wider, more stoic appeal. Its futuristic-looking (I can’t get the face of Predator out of my mind) LED headlights are nestled nicely into the Macan’s wraparound bonnet that merges well into its well-sculpted profile. Fog lights have been removed, this function is now performed by the LED light technology of the headlights and the parking sensors are now integrated into the aerodynamically optimised airblades.
The changes to the rear haven’t gone unnoticed either with a characteristic Porsche design feature that has been added with the three-part, three-dimensional LED light panel complete with a 3D “PORSCHE” logo positioned on the light panel. The centre of gravity looks lower and the black exhaust tailpipes are integrated into the rear apron, there’s plenty of drama back there.
Once you get past that enlivening scent, the other thing you immediately notice in the cabin is the new 10.9-inch touchscreen display of the enhanced Porsche Communication Management (PCM) with full-HD resolution and connected plus. It’s integrated into the dashboard, connecting you and your smartphone (Apple and Android) to Porsche world and although the raft of buttons that make up the centre console would contradict, Porsche has reduced the number of buttons in the display area thanks to this new interface – hmmm. Make no mistake, the Macan comes with a high-quality, premium cabin that feels expansive, much larger than its exterior would suggest, room for five and their gear for sure.
It’s worth noting here some of the other luxury ‘options’ that are available in this new Macan. An ioniser that improves the (already pollen-free) air quality in the air flow, thermally and noise insulated glass (for already quiet cabin) is available in combination with privacy glass. A heated windscreen, Park Assist, Smartphone tray, Traffic Jam Assist, GT sports steering wheel, I guess the list to make it yours goes on and on – mine came with Adaptive Cruise Control and Lane Change Assist in case you were wondering.
Under its wraparound bonnet is a further developed 2L turbocharged engine that delivers 180 kW and 370 Nm of Power and Torque respectively. It’ll accelerate from 0-100 km/h in 6.7 seconds and will reach a top speed of 225 km/h. Fuel efficiency runs at 8.1L/100km and emissions sit at 185g/km. It’s quick and nimble but although the VarioCam Plus continuously adjusts the intake and exhaust camshafts and additionally controls the exhaust valve lift, it does lack that Porsche performance growl – maybe a sports exhaust option is in order?
The PDK (Porsche dual-clutch) transmission is quick and responsive with slick gear changes, as expected. I spent the majority of my time in Sport mode which deactivates the annoying start/stop function (I’m not a fan in any vehicle) plus the modified PDK offers a coasting mode that I don’t believe I utilised. (There’s an off-road button I didn’t touch either).
However, what I did utilise is the accelerator. Around town and suburbia the Macan is fine, great in fact. Like I said before, there’s more than enough room and refinement to accommodate even the most discerning of SUV owners. Turning circle is surprisingly good and it slots into traffic with ease. But, in my experience, that Porsche badge is directly connected to my right foot and (even though this is baby 2L) the Macan doesn’t disappoint. It’s up into triple figures in the blink of an eye and embraces even the tightest of turns, with fun and excitement.
The new look Macan still holds onto what has made it so successful but thanks to wider design cues, greater engine efficiencies and a whole host of smarter tech, it’s much leaner and meaner on the road, oh and off it too. Dammit, I’ve just found out that there’s an Offroad Precision app for Porsche fun off-road – Maybe they’ll loan it to me again, I need to test that off-road button.
Thanks for the most excellent pics as always www.tezmphoto.