2015 Porsche Macan: The Best Porsche?
March 10, 2015
Is the 2015 Macan S the best Porsche? Well, the existence of the 911, Cayman, Boxster and their great many great variations would indicate otherwise. So too would the usually merry band of monogrammed polo shirt-wearing Porschephiles who would surely threaten my very existence should I be serious about answering my rhetorical question in the affirmative.
However, after driving our Macan to the press launch of the revised 2015 Porsche Cayenne S and Panamera S, I walked away thinking that the cheapest four-door Porsche is in fact the best four-door Porsche.
The Panamera feels so enormous when behind the wheel. This is in part because it is enormous, but also because of the driving position. You sit low with high sills and an expansive hood that seems to reach out for every rock face and road-encroaching shrub. The controls feel Porsche-like, but there's no escaping the feel of overwhelming girth in both its maneuverability and agility. It's good despite its inherent self.
Then there's the Cayenne. It feels like an SUV that Porsche took apart and reengineered using its parts bin and endlessly impressive mechanical wizardry. Its controls also feel Porsche-like and it handles better than you ever thought an SUV could, but it nevertheless always feels like a big, tall SUV. It's good despite its inherent self.
The Macan, on the other hand, feels the most true to the brand. Although obviously bigger than Porsche's sports cars, it doesn't feel enormous. In terms of perception both visual and tactile, you get the sense you're driving something more akin to a slightly taller sport sedan than an SUV put under the spell of sportiness. Everything from the steering to the PDK transmission is taut, mechanically precise and atypical of the SUV norm. It's a joy to drive with no qualifications needed.
The best Porsche? No, but even if money was no object, my four-door Porsche would be the Macan.
James Riswick, Automotive Editor @ 14,230 miles