Porsche Taycan Cross Turismo is the best version of the best EV
A practical Porsche? Following on from the highly praised Taycan EV, the Taycan Cross Turismo is a more purposeful, rugged and functional all-rounder
There’s a general consensus amongst motoring journalists that the Porsche Taycan is the ‘best’ EV on the market, if money were no object. Developed by the wizards of Weissach, the engineers responsible for 70 years’ worth of purist sports cars for road and track, the big Porsche is a welcome addition to the family tree.
The Taycan’s scale ensures it can deliver both respectable range and roaring performance, albeit not necessarily at the same time. Porsche’s dynamics team have managed to wring wonders from this hefty machine, giving it a velvety smooth but sharp driving response more akin to a traditional sports car than a sizeable four-door electric saloon (hence its gilded status amongst nostalgic petrolheads).
Porsche Taycan Cross Turismo
Porsche’s second pure electric model is the Taycan Cross Turismo, which gives the Taycan shape an extended load bay and slightly raised suspension. It looks more purposeful and rugged, and is certainly more practical, with far more luggage space. The Cross Turismo is available in 4, 4S, Turbo, and Turbo S configurations.
The last is the performance champion capable of delivering that all-important sub-three second 0-62mph sprint. If you ever find somewhere to safely do this, you will probably only do it once (depending on your propensity for showing off).
In fact, the Cross Turismo poses an interesting question; what even is the point of a sports car in 2022? Formula 1 has been reduced to a set of complex and arbitrary rules, and electric motorsport is still reckoning with the conflicting demands of range and power. There’s precious little space left for the supposed romance between human and machine, the synergy that seemed so thrilling at the dawn of the automotive era.
Couple this with the slow-burning realisation that driving fast on public roads is for the rich and reckless, those who have no experience or expectation of consequences.
Given this, the Cross Turismo is a Porsche that makes sense, emphasising function and form, rather than the brand’s sporting heritage. As a result, it makes a very good case for being the best version of the best EV, although the Turbo S range-topper is slightly OTT in terms of price and power.
All models come with Porsche’s class-leading interior design and switchgear, a triple-screen system that doesn’t feel as overbearing as the IT in some other luxury cars (although there are sadly very few physical buttons). The boomerang-shaped screen bearing the dials behind the wheel is a particular success, aping the edgeless design of the modern smartphone while still following the form language that originated in the first Porsche 911 in 1963.
One of Porsche’s great strengths is that it can bring delightful driving dynamics to practically any automotive genre and the Taycan is no exception. The colossal 2,245kg weight is effortlessly balanced by the adaptive air suspension, giving the steering a fluidity and responsiveness that wouldn’t disgrace a much lighter machine.
The controls are peerless, and the switch from ICE to EV has reduced the drivetrain controls down to a simple lever on the dashboard.
It’s not surprising to learn that the Taycan is outselling its (conventional) rivals in the luxury saloon market. In 2020, Porsche sold over 20,000 Taycans around the world; in the UK, it was the company’s top-selling model in November 2021. An even newer Taycan variant, the GTS, is arriving soon, as are more electric Porsches, starting with the Macan SUV later this year. Before long, there’ll also be the first ‘pure’ Porsche electric sports car, a two-seater that must somehow translate the 911’s weighty historical burden using this new(ish) technology.
Until the next breakthrough in battery tech, and with the age of driving as a sporting pursuit starting to wane, all-rounders like the Taycan Cross Turismo seem a far better bet. §