Motor Review - Porsche Panamera GTS
PUBLISHED: 00:00 14 September 2013
Our motoring correspondent Syd Taylor discovers that you are always popular with a Porsche Panamera GTS
I have heard critics declare that the Panamera’s shape is unevocative; that its performance is compromised and that its ride is less than you would expect. In response I have but one question. ‘Where do these people come from?’ I look at the car and my passions instantly run high and I just want to get in and go. Here is a stunning looking car designed to thrill while being underpinned with all that is sound, sensible and safe.
Do I need to tell you that it is astonishingly good to drive, remarkably swift all the way to nearly 180mph, perfectly poised with its selectable chassis settings, balistic or leisurely depending on which electronic mode you choose and with that big and powerful 4.8 litre, 430hp V8 engine at your command? It contains the same mechanical glories you find under the bonnet of all Porsches - and it’s just as much fun to drive even though it does about 26 mpg.
I gradually discovered for myself the excellence of thinking behind the Panamera, with all the qualities you’d expect of a GT. Room for four and lots of luggage in the big boot and a real measure of practicality everywhere.
Step into the GTS and you are instantly struck by how snug the cockpit is. The organic form of the car is carried through to the interior where the main elements are nicely sculptured and integrated. Seats hold you well and have a lovely suppleness that says ‘luxury’ as well as ‘sports’. You face a control panel with a plethora of switches that rival the flight deck of an Airbus.
Down to business. It’s into drive and sport mode and off we go. Wow! It surges forward with vigour, as power and tranquility share the same moment: it’s endlessly fulfilling. They say the pen is mightier than the sword but this Panamera is mightier than the pen and it would take a pit crew of Keats, Shelley and Byron together to come up with odes to equal its dynamic magnificence.
You blast down the road: heads swivel. You’re immensely secure as you tackle bends at speed wholesale and you find yourself in the process of creating a tactile gestalt of incendiary kineticism. Rubber, road, power, roar, revelation.
Gosh! I’d forgotten what fun you can have behind the wheel of a £91,239 (£106,398 as tested with extras) machine. As I returned to my homely cul-de-sac, I pressed the ‘loud button’ once more to see if I could send ripples through my neighbours double-glazing. I knew I’d be safe. You’re always popular with a Porsche.