The new Porsche Panamera is the best driving sedan I have ever been in. That is a strong statement, but one I stand by. The Panamera is an amazing car, yet I find myself having trouble describing why.
Please understand this is sort of a big deal since I’ve never been a raving Porsche fan. If the rest of their vehicles are as good as this car that could rapidly change.
The front-engine Panamera comes with a 4.8 liter, 400-horse V8 and has 269 pound-feet of torque, and 4 valves per cylinder. This gives the car an incredible take-off from a dead start. It is paired with a 7-speed automatic transmission that shifts flawlessly and delivers pretty darned good road mileage if you can keep the car less than 100 miles per hour.
Panamera has one of the prettiest and most luxurious interiors I have ever seen, which was also a surprise. The car was stunning the moment you open the door. While inside, you will see the best laid-out driver controls I have ever seen. Everything is well within reach of the driver and easy to understand. The 235-watt stereo system would be a little lacking for this price car, but the optional Bose system makes it wonderful. 8-way adjustable seats make it very easy for both front seat passengers to get comfy.
The surprise for me was the car had a very spacious back seat and a ton of headroom for all 4 passengers. The car looks low-profile from its shape, but even with a power moonroof, people well over 6-feet tall will be comfortable. This too was a big surprise.
My Ruby Red Panamera S had beautiful 19” wheels, adaptive air suspension, park assist with rear camera and a power spoiler that you can operate from the dash or it comes up automatically when needed. True top speed of this sedan is 175 miles per hour. I never got to test that, unfortunately. But I did test the 0-to-60 and it came in at 5.2 seconds and the car never wavered or faltered in any way. You can get a turbocharged edition of this same car that will get you to 500-horses. I can’t even imagine that the S model isn’t enough for just about anyone.
The handling is where I think the love affair with this car is so apparent. Truly, it feels like it is on rails. Panamera has an unusual combination of riding like a luxury car, yet handles like, well….a Porsche. I must not be the only one to love this car, Panamera has become the #1 selling Porsche model in America, outselling the Cayenne SUV.
The look of this car does not appeal to everyone and I admit the styling is different, but for me, it works. This car is extremely wide, wider in fact than the Mercedes S-Class flagship sedan. But again it works; especially when sitting behind the wheel.
The price of this car will eliminate a lot of buyers, but a six-cylinder version with 300-horses debuts later this month and should come in around $20,000 less. Should you win the lottery anytime soon, I would make a quick trip to the local Porsche store.
- What I liked most: Pretty much everything.
- What I’d change if I could: Have my name on the Texas title.
- MSRP Price as tested: $107,050.
- Fuel economy: 16 City/24 Highway
- Panamera in a few words: I already said it. Best sedan I have ever driven.