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Car review: 2021 Porsche Panamera Turbo S – News – telegram.com

I think we can all agree 2020’s a bummer. Things can always get better, right? Please?

They will for sure if you’re shopping for a high-end Porsche next spring. I just spent an afternoon driving the 2021 Panamera Turbo S sedan, a blisteringly fast sport sedan that’s also a roomy all-wheel-drive luxury car.

The Turbo S – 620 hp and 604 pound-feet of torque – is one of four new blades in the Panamera’s sheath for the 2021 model year. The others are the Turbo S Sport Turismo, an extended-roof model that manages not to be completely graceless, and a pair of plug-in hybrids, the 4S E-Hybrid and 5.9-inch longer 4S E-Hybrid Executive.

The Panamera’s sheer physical presence is always a surprise, its size disguised by styling that leans heavily on the brand’s classic 911 sports car. But the Panamera Turbo S is 198.8 inches from nose to tail, longer than Porsche’s more obviously large Cayenne SUV – not to mention nearly 3 inches longer than a Toyota Avalon. The Panamera’s long hood, 911-style headlights and fastback combine to create the impression of a smaller car.

That changes when you slip inside. The Panamera is roomy, advanced and luxurious.

There’s plenty of headroom, and door openings big enough for easy entry and exit from front or rear seat despite a relatively low roof.

The front seat is roomy, with easy-to-use controls and plenty of storage. The touch screen is responsive, though some of its touch points are small enough to be a challenge in a moving car. Porsche’s configurable gauge cluster can display maps and navigation instructions in its right binnacle.

The Turbo S will be the Panamera line’s performance king. Power is immediate and stunning, accelerating to 60 mph in 2.9 seconds and capable of 196 mph – “on the track,” Porsche says with one eye on U.S. liability laws that bewilder and terrify German automakers.

The additional power comes from new turbochargers and fuel injectors on the 4.0L V8, which got additional damping to keep engine vibration from intruding on the cabin. The interior is quiet at highway speeds and in enthusiastic driving, despite the Turbo S’s grippy and aggressive 21-inch Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires.

The Turbo S’ handling is imperturbable in any sane maneuver on public roads. The steering system was retuned to give the driver more feedback. Porsche’s Active Suspension Management system (PASM) also got new calibrations.

New equipment includes standard four-wheel steering for improved maneuverability and ceramic brakes with massive stopping power.

Visible exterior changes include new fascia and bigger front air inlets.

Porsche won’t reveal prices until the Turbo S goes on sale next spring, but expect it to start around $180,000. The twin-turbo 4.0L V8, eight-speed automatic transmission and performance tuned all-wheel drive are standard.

That’s a pretty good deal, essentially the cost of 21-inch wheels, suspension and brake options on a 2020 Panamera Turbo, and a small premium for the engine upgrades, which boost horsepower 70 hp, torque 37 pound-feet, cut 0-60 time 7 seconds and increase top speed 6 mph.

Ceramic brakes, rear steering and 21-inch wheels – all options on the 2020 Panamera Turbo – will be standard on the Turbo S.

A full list of features and option prices – it’s a Porsche; no matter how high the base price, there will be options – will be available closer to when the Turbo S goes on sale in spring 2021.

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