2013 Porsche Panamera GTS vs. 2012 Porsche Panamera Turbo S Track Test

Performance Testing Two Flavors of Porsche Sport Sedan


  • 2012 Porsche Panamera Turbo S Picture

    2012 Porsche Panamera Turbo S Picture

    2012 Porsche Panamera Turbo S. | August 21, 2012

23 Photos

Edmunds tests hundreds of vehicles a year. Cars, trucks, SUVs, we run them all, and the numbers always tell a story. With that in mind we present "Track Tested," a quick rundown of all the data we collect at the track, along with comments direct from the test drivers. Enjoy.

Porsche's Panamera is a sacrilegious, money-grubbing attempt to profit from decades of sports-car perfection. It's also the best sport sedan a huge pile of money can buy, and Porsche's just upped the ante with the new driver-focused, 2013 Panamera GTS.

The GTS starts out as an all-wheel-drive Panamera 4S, but the 4.8-liter V8 has been tweaked to make 430 horsepower and 384 pound-feet of torque. The GTS is lowered nearly half an inch over the standard car and has a wider front and rear track. Porsche's active suspension management (PASM) has been tuned for a more advanced driver and the cosmetic changes reflect the new nature of this Panamera. The GTS also ups the price to $111,975.

The 2013 Porsche Panamera GTS ticks all of the right boxes for a GTS, but how does it compare with the big boy of the Panamera fleet, the $173,200, 550-hp Turbo S?

  Porsche Panamera Turbo S Porsche Panamera GTS
0-30 (sec): 1.4 1.4
0-45 (sec): 2.3 2.5
0-60 (sec): 3.7 4.1
0-60 with 1-ft Rollout (sec): 3.5 3.9
0-75 (sec): 5.2 6.0
1/4-mile (sec @ mph): 11.9 @ 117.2 12.5 @ 108.2
30-0 (ft): 29 28
60-0 (ft): 112 110
Skid Pad Lateral Accel (g): 0.96 0.96
Slalom: 68.9 68.6

Vehicle: 2012 Porsche Panamera Turbo S
Odometer: 864
Date: 8-23-2011
Driver: Chris Walton
Price: $173,200 (Base)

Specifications:
Drive Type: All-wheel drive
Transmission Type: Seven-speed automatic
Engine Type: Longitudinal, turbocharged V8
Displacement (cc/cu-in): 4,806/293
Redline (rpm): 6,500
Horsepower (hp @ rpm): 550 @ 6,000
Torque (lb-ft @ rpm): 553 (590 with overboost)
Brake Type (front): Vented discs with six-piston fixed calipers
Brake Type (rear): Vented discs with four-piston fixed calipers
Suspension Type (front): Independent double wishbones, adaptive air suspension
Suspension Type (rear): independent multilink, adaptive air suspension
Tire Size (front): 255/40ZR20 (101Y)
Tire Size (rear): 295/35 ZR20 (105Y)
Tire Brand: Michelin
Tire Model: Pilot Sport PS2
Tire Type: Summer performance
As Tested Curb Weight (lb): 4,414

Test Results:
Acceleration
0-30 (sec): 1.4 (1.9 w/TC on)
0-45 (sec): 2.3 (3.0 w/TC on)
0-60 (sec): 3.7 (4.4 w/TC on)
0-60 with 1-ft Rollout (sec): 3.5 (4.0 w/TC on)
0-75 (sec): 5.2 (5.9 w/TC on)
1/4-Mile (sec @ mph): 11.9 @ 117.2 (12.2 @ 117.5 w/TC on)

Braking
30-0 (ft): 29
60-0 (ft): 112

Handling
Slalom (mph): 68.9 (66.7 w/TC on)
Skid Pad Lateral Acceleration (g): 0.96 (0.95 w/TC on)
Db @ Idle: 45.8
Db @ Full Throttle: 77
Db @ 70 mph Cruise: 65

Acceleration: What can I say but I was essentially along for the carnival ride. I just whack the throttle and the car does the rest. Launch mode spins tires briefly, then reroutes power. Short-shifts 1-2 but it all works so fast and so well that it's hard to sort out what just happened. Upshifts are predictably fast and a little harsh.

Braking: Zero drama, zero dive, zero fade, run after run. Firm pedal and arrow-straight.

Handling:
Skid pad: Very little ESC intrusion (ever-so-slight throttle closure) allows rear to step out slightly — highly receptive to throttle position to alter under-oversteer. No need to move hands; just throttle. With ESC off, a little more tail-out and a little more steering input required.

Slalom: (Run in Sport +) Wow, what a sedan! It feels like a two-seat sports car. Turn-in is a little lazy, but the car takes a set immediately and remains ready to spring back in transition. More steering dial than expected, but so, so precise. Best run with ESC off allowed me to drive it like a rally car (lift-stab) to rotate and exit at WOT!

Vehicle: 2013 Porsche Panamera GTS
Odometer: 864
Date: 7-17-2012
Driver: Chris Walton
Price: $111,975 (Base)

Specifications:
Drive Type: All-wheel drive
Transmission Type: Seven-speed automatic
Engine Type: Longitudinal, naturally aspirated V8
Displacement (cc/cu-in): 4,806/293
Redline (rpm): 7,200
Horsepower (hp @ rpm): 430 @ 6,700
Torque (lb-ft @ rpm): 384 @3,500
Brake Type (front): 15.4-inch one-piece ventilated cast-iron discs with six-piston fixed calipers
Brake Type (rear): 13-inch one-piece ventilated cast-iron discs with four-piston fixed calipers
Suspension Type (front): Double-wishbone control arms, air springs, dampers with active electronic adjustment
Suspension Type (rear): Multilink control arms, air springs, dampers with active electronic adjustment
Tire Size (front): 255/40ZR20 (101Y)
Tire Size (rear): 295/35 ZR20 (105Y)
Tire Brand: Michelin
Tire Model: Pilot Sport PS2
Tire Type: Summer performance
As Tested Curb Weight (lb): 4,362

Test Results:
Acceleration
0-30 (sec): 1.4 (2.1 w/TC on)
0-45 (sec): 2.5 (3.4 w/TC on)
0-60 (sec): 4.1 (5.2 w/TC on)
0-60 with 1-ft Rollout (sec): 3.9 (4.9 w/TC on)
0-75 (sec): 6.0 (7.2 w/TC on)
1/4-Mile (sec @ mph): 12.5 @ 108.2 (13.3 @ 105.6 w/TC on)

Braking
30-0 (ft): 28
60-0 (ft): 110

Handling
Slalom (mph): 68.6 (67.8 w/TC on)
Skid Pad Lateral Acceleration (g): 0.96 ( 0.96 w/TC on )
Db @ Idle: 50.5
Db @ Full Throttle: 77.0
Db @ 70 mph Cruise: 64.5

Comments:

Acceleration: The Panamera GTS is no slouch in default Drive mode. Whacking the throttle to the floor with no performance-enhancing buttons selected gets the job done quickly and very smoothly. Selecting Sport Plus, shutting off PSM and engaging Launch Control unleashes the beast with tire-spinning, short-shifting 1st and banging off upshifts with measurably more authority and harshness. This engine is so quick to rev and it's fascinating to watch the tach needle jump down (and up for downshifts) with an almost digital precision — no sloppy throttle map here.

Braking: It required a few stops to bring the big composite brakes up to temp for the shortest stopping distance, but the behavior never changed: Flat, straight, quiet and with a firm pedal.

Handling:
Skid pad: With PSM off, the Panamera GTS was very sensitive to throttle input, and I could easily adjust the rear slip angle and resulting heading with my right foot alone. PSM on allowed almost the same amount of gentle oversteer, but managed to coax a slightly quicker lap with selective brake applications.

Slalom: Unreal. How Porsche engineered a car of this size and weight to feel like a compact sport sedan is beyond me. Crisp turn-in, zero yaw delay, precise steering, gentle oversteer and predictable reactions when going to the throttle all add up to an amazing and memorable slalom exercise. Nearly the same freedom allowed with PSM on, but I noticed it most at the exit where it disallowed throttle until the steering wheel was more or less straight. Still, it feels like a car half its size and weight.

The manufacturer provided Edmunds these vehicles for the purposes of evaluation.

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