New Porsche Taycan review

Category: Electric car

The 2024 Taycan is a brilliant electric car that offers driving pleasure and a long range

Porsche Taycan front left driving
  • Porsche Taycan front left driving
  • Porsche Taycan rear left driving
  • Porsche Taycan interior dashboard
  • Porsche Taycan interior front seats
  • Porsche Taycan interior infotainment
  • Porsche Taycan left driving
  • Porsche Taycan front driving
  • Porsche Taycan front cornering
  • Porsche Taycan rear cornering
  • Porsche Taycan front left static
  • Porsche Taycan front static
  • Porsche Taycan rear right static
  • Porsche Taycan headlights detail
  • Porsche Taycan front detail
  • Porsche Taycan alloy wheel detail
  • Porsche Taycan kickplate detail
  • Porsche Taycan steering wheel detail
  • Porsche Taycan front left driving
  • Porsche Taycan rear left driving
  • Porsche Taycan interior dashboard
  • Porsche Taycan interior front seats
  • Porsche Taycan interior infotainment
  • Porsche Taycan left driving
  • Porsche Taycan front driving
  • Porsche Taycan front cornering
  • Porsche Taycan rear cornering
  • Porsche Taycan front left static
  • Porsche Taycan front static
  • Porsche Taycan rear right static
  • Porsche Taycan headlights detail
  • Porsche Taycan front detail
  • Porsche Taycan alloy wheel detail
  • Porsche Taycan kickplate detail
  • Porsche Taycan steering wheel detail
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by
John Howell
Published03 April 2024

Introduction

What Car? says...

Some might say the Porsche Taycan was quite late to the electric car party. Others would argue that by biding its time and making sure its first modern all-electric model was a good ’un, Porsche did the right thing. Either way, there's no doubting the result.

Straight out the blocks, the Taycan has been brilliant. Not just supremely fast, but also easily the best electric car to drive. Indeed, it's so engaging and enjoyable that it compares well with petrol-powered performance cars as well as electrified rivals.

Time waits for no one though, so Porsche has pulled the covers off a thoroughly updated 2024 Taycan to keep it up to speed. As well as working to make it even better to drive, it's aimed to make it a more useable electric car too. For instance, the electric range and charging speeds have been increased.

Some things remain the same. It’s still a low-slung four-door car with space for four adults and a reasonably big boot. And Porsche still offers you options when it comes to the bodystyle. Here, we're concentrating on the coupé, but you can also have the sleek, estate-like Taycan Sport Turismo or the more rugged-looking Taycan Cross Turismo.

Is all that enough to maintain the Porsche Taycan’s attractiveness against the closely-related Audi e-tron GT and other rivals? Read on to find out...

Overview

If you're looking for a brilliant electric car that offers real driving pleasure, the Porsche Taycan is the one for you. All versions are quick, have amazing handling, and are wonderfully classy and reasonably practical inside. It’s also available with one of the longest official ranges you can get – but on the down side, none of that comes cheap.

  • Staggering performance and engaging handling
  • Great potential battery range
  • Wonderful interior quality
  • It's very expensive...
  • ...and you’ll probably want to add some options
  • Reliability has been a concern
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Performance & drive

What it’s like to drive, and how quiet it is

The Porsche Taycan’s handling is in a different league to other electric cars (well, except perhaps the Audi e-tron GT, which shares similar underpinnings). In terms of grip, balance and resistance to body roll, any Taycan is quite exceptional.

All models come with adaptive air suspension as standard, but if you add the optional Porsche Active Ride suspension you have a car that’s every bit as capable in corners as the best performance cars out there, such as the larger but lighter Porsche Panamera.

The steering is equally impressive. It gives you a far better sense of connection to the road than the steering in the Mercedes EQS. It even pips the e-tron GT’s because it has more heft.

Every millimetre of movement of the steering wheel has a subtle but positive influence on the car’s trajectory, giving you maximum confidence. You can tighten the turning circle with optional rear-wheel steering (standard on the Turbo S) so it feels like a much smaller car around town but gains stability at speed.

So far we've driven the latest Taycan with the optional Porsche Active Ride suspension. It reacts very quickly if, say, you hit a speed bump or pothole, softening the suspension in milliseconds to take the sting out of imperfections. It makes the car amazingly supple over most lumps and bumps.

Porsche TAYCAN image
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Another trick up its sleeve is the ability to counter body lean. With Active Ride fitted, the Taycan in Comfort drive mode leans into a curve, aiming to reduce the cornering forces you feel pushing you sideways. It works to a degree, but if you’re pressing on you still feel the forces trying to push you out of your seat.

Nevertheless, the Taycan is one of the best-riding cars in the class – not just because of how compliant it feels, but also because it’s so well controlled and settles quickly after a bump. That’s why it rides better than the Mercedes EQS (which is softer but a lot floatier).

There are also several variants in terms of performance. The entry-level model has rear-wheel drive and is simply called the Taycan. Then there's the 4S, which has more power and – as the name suggests – adds four-wheel drive. The performance gets really spicy with Turbo models: Turbo, Turbo S and Turbo GT. The GT is lighter than an S but delivers a scarcely believable 1,020bhp.

There is one thing missing, of course: no whacking great V8 or sizzling flat-six petrol engine to stir the soul. There is, however, the option of a fake engine noise generator (it's standard from Turbo S up) called Porsche Electric Sport Sound.

To some, it will add a sense of drama as you gun the accelerator. Others will think it sound a bit naff. The good news is you can switch it off if you wish.

With it deactivated, you’ll notice some very slight motor whine around town and the sound of the two-speed automatic gearbox on the rear motor changing gear under hard acceleration.

The main noises you’ll hear come from the suspension pattering away over broken Tarmac and the rumble of its tyres across a coarse surface. The tyre roar mainly comes about on version with bigger tyres. It’s not such an issue on the standard 19in wheels you get with the entry-level Taycan and 4S trim.

Wind noise is very well contained, mind. In every version it rarely goes beyond a light and consistent background whoosh.

What about the brakes? Well, in some rivals – the EQS for example – the brakes can be grabby because the regenerative braking system isn’t well integrated with the regular braking system.

The Taycan’s brakes aren’t like that, but nor do they feel entirely natural, especially under hard braking. That’s the reason we prefer the brake feel in Tesla models. Yet for everyday driving, the Taycan’s brake pedal feels well judged. The upshot is it’s perfectly possible to stop it smoothly in most situations.

We haven’t mentioned the performance, yet – and the fact is that the Taycan is seriously impressive whichever version you go for. Even the entry-level, single-motor, rear-wheel-drive model has up to 402bhp, and if you put your foot down in that with launch control engaged, it’s capable of 0-62mph in 4.8 seconds. That knocks a mid-range Mercedes EQE 350 for six.

For the true Porsche accelerative experience, we recommend the 4S. As with the entry-level Taycan, there are two battery options and the one to buy is the bigger 105kWh Performance Battery Plus. That version upgrades power to a consistent 500bhp or 590bhp in quick bursts – taking you from 0-62mph in 3.7 seconds. That's nearly half a second quicker than the Audi e-tron GT Quattro.

We reckon the 4S is quick enough for any sane person. The Turbo has up to 871bhp, so it’ll hit 62mph in 2.7 seconds while the Turbo S drops that time down to 2.4 seconds. Then there’s the Turbo GT – and that’s off he scale, with up to 1,020bhp and the potential to go from 0-62mph in 2.2 seconds. So, on paper it’s basically as quick as the quickest Tesla Model S (the Plaid).  

With instant shove, the pick-up is like switching on a light bulb and you’re shoved back in your seat as though gravity is acting horizontally. Yet it’s not all or nothing. When you're more measured with your accelerator inputs, the Taycan accelerates very progressively and doesn’t feel the least bit tetchy to drive.

What about the electric range? The great news here is that even the cheapest Taycan – with the standard 89kWh battery – can officially manage up to 367 miles on a full charge. That’s considerably further than the 305 miles of the e-tron GT.

With the optional 105kWh Performance Battery Plus, you can eke out 421 miles, according to the official stats. That’s more than any rival except the more expensive Mercedes EQS 450+, which can do up to 441 miles.

Our pick of the range, the 4S, is rated at 346 miles, or 399 miles if you take our advice and option the bigger battery. As always, official range is one thing, but real-world range is likely to be a little less, so expect that 399-mile range to be more like 350 in practice.

Performance overview

Strengths Amazing pace; agile and engaging handling; plush ride

Weaknesses Some tyre and suspension noise; brake pedal feel isn’t perfect

Porsche Taycan rear left driving

Interior

The interior layout, fit and finish

Put simply, in terms of interior quality, the Porsche Taycan beats all rival electric cars – even the Audi e-tron GT.

Every surface you touch feels suitably upmarket and it all feels beautifully screwed together. You can’t say either of those things applies to the Mercedes EQS, despite its similarly heady price tag.

The Taycan’s driving position is also superb. You sit closer to the ground than in most electric cars, so you immediately feel as though you’re in something properly sporty. There’s still plenty of adjustment for the steering wheel, mind – it moves up and down as well in and out.

The seats are wonderfully supportive on a long journey, too, but also have great side support to hold you firmly should you be throwing it around on a twisty road.

You get eight-way electrically adjustable seats as standard, but you can pay extra if you want more adjustment – 14-way or 18-way seats are available. The Turbo comes with the 14-way seats by default, while the top-end Turbo GT gets racing-style lightweight carbon-fibre bucket seats.

If you like tech, you’ll appreciate the four large screens across the dashboard. Three of them – the one behind the steering wheel and the two touchscreens in the middle of the dashboard – are standard, but the screen for the passenger is an optional extra.

It’s very similar in principle to the passenger screen in the EQE and EQS, letting your passenger see info such as driving data or play the role of in-car DJ. Alternatively, they can watch videos, but thanks to the special display it’s impossible for the driver to see what they’re watching.

The instrument cluster behind the steering wheel is a sleek-looking 16.8in curved digital screen. It's very customisable and capable of showing you everything from sat-nav instructions to how much G-force you’re generating in corners.

Most of the car's features are controlled using the central 8.4in touchscreen, which has haptic feedback, and the 10.9in infotainment screen above it. Sadly, there are not many physical buttons, which can be a problem: hitting the smaller icons while driving is tricky and distracting. The e-tron GT's dashboard has more physical buttons, which make it easier to use.

The Taycan's lower screen is awkward to operate without contorting your arm and it's easy to press it with your palm accidentally when you're trying to steady your hand to use the upper screen.

A 15kW wireless phone-charging pad comes as standard, which is cooled to stop your phone overheating. And you get Android Auto and Apple CarPlay so you can mirror your phone’s software on the infotainment screen.

The standard stereo has 10 speakers and 150 watts. You can upgrade it in two ways: to a Bose system with 14 speakers and 710 watts, or a Burmester one with 21 speakers and 1,455 watts (it's very pricey but sounds pretty fab).

Visibility is okay but not great. The wide front pillars hinder your view slightly, and seeing out to the rear is trickier, with not just fat rear pillars but a shallow rear screen too.

Thankfully, a rear-view camera along with front and rear parking sensors are standard, as are adaptive matrix LED headlights, which can be upgraded to even better HD matrix LEDs. They illuminate the road up to 600m ahead, and with 32,000 pixels, they can shape their beams even more precisely to provide maximum vision without dazzling other road users.

Interior overview

Strengths Beautifully finished interior; excellent driving position; supportive driver’s seat

Weaknesses Visibility could be better; some fiddly infotainment icons; lack of physical buttons

Porsche Taycan interior dashboard

Passenger & boot space

How it copes with people and clutter

Under the skin, the Porsche Taycan is very similar to the Audi e-tron GT, so you won't be surprised to hear that they're both pretty much identical for interior space, both front and rear.

And the Taycan isn’t the impractical weekend toy you might imagine it to be. It's smaller than a Porsche Panamera, but not by much.

The Mercedes EQE and Tesla Model S have a touch more room in the back, but the Taycan's standard two-seat arrangement can easily accommodate a couple of six-footers.

There isn't much room left over, though, and the optional third rear seat isn't really suitable for adults. Adding the third-seat option also brings 40/20/40 split-folding rear seats. Without it, the rear seatbacks fold 60/40.

One issue is that it can be tricky to get in and out of the Taycan, because the door openings aren’t huge. Being so low to the ground doesn’t help, so it’s worth noting that the optional Porsche Active Ride suspension helps a bit by raising the car by 55mm every time you open the door.

The boot is plenty big enough for a buggy or a set of golf clubs. In terms of outright load space, we managed to fit in six carry-on suitcases with room left over for a soft bag, which is more than a VW Golf boot can swallow.

You get underfloor storage for the charging cables as long as you don't go for one of the upgraded sound systems (they have a subwoofer that takes up space). And unlike in the EQE, there's another luggage compartment under the bonnet, which is easily big enough for one more carry-on case.

If you need a little more boot or rear-passenger space, don’t forget the (slightly) more practical estate-like variants, the Porsche Taycan Cross Turismo and the Porsche Taycan Sport Turismo.

Practicality overview

Strengths Room for four adults; decent-sized rear boot; extra boot in the nose

Weaknesses Rear seats aren’t as big as some rivals; narrow door openings

Porsche Taycan interior front seats

Buying & owning

Everyday costs, plus how reliable and safe it is

If you're lucky enough to have the Porsche Taycan on your company car list, you're quids in. Electric cars attract fantastic benefit-in-kind (BIK) tax breaks right now, so it will set you back a tiny amount in monthly salary sacrifices compared with combustion-engined cars in the same price bracket.

The rear-wheel-drive Taycan is the cheapest option for private cash buyers, but the 4S is significantly faster and feels like a proper performance car. It will cost more than the equivalent Audi e-tron GT but we reckon it's worth the extra. For the latest prices, see our New Car Deals pages.

Monthly PCP car finance payments are typically higher than they would be for the equivalent e-tron GT or Mercedes EQE.

Standard features (for the entry-level car and the 4S) include 19in alloy wheels, heated front seats, dual-zone climate control, cruise control, a powered tailgate and a heat pump. You have to pay extra for keyless entry, privacy glass, a heated steering wheel, full leather seats and adaptive cruise control. The Turbo and Turbo S come with extra standard kit, but they cost tens of thousands of pounds more.

If you stick with the 4S, we recommend adding the Performance Battery Plus option (standard on the Turbo models), which increases the maximum charging rate from 270kW to 320kW. In theory, that allows you to charge from 10-80% in around 20 minutes (significantly quicker than the EQE), but you'll need to find a very fast charging station to do so.

In the UK, you're much more likely to come across a 150kW charger, which can deliver a 10-80% charge in just over half an hour. A 0-100% charge from an 11kW home wallbox takes around 11 hours.

Porsche gives you a three-year, unlimited-mileage warranty, while the battery is guaranteed to maintain at least 70% of its capacity for eight years/100,000 miles.

The list of standard safety technology includes automatic emergency braking (AEB), traffic-sign recognition and lane-keeping assistance. Blind-spot monitoring is available as an option.

In terms of crash protection, the Taycan achieved a full five-star rating from Euro NCAP. Whiplash protection for adults and children sitting in the front or back was found to be a little disappointing. The EQE was better in that respect.

What’s more disappointing is the reliability record. The pre-facelift Taycan finished as the least reliable electric car in our 2023 What Car? Reliability Survey. And Porsche as a brand could manage only 20th position when it was ranked against 32 other manufacturers. Mercedes came 24th while Tesla was up in 10th.

Costs overview

Strengths Quick potential charging speed; strong safety rating

Weaknesses Expensive; lots of equipment optional; poor reliability record 

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Porsche Taycan interior infotainment

FAQs

  • Yes. Every version in the Taycan range – this saloon, the Cross Turismo and the Sport Turismo – is an electric car. It was the first modern electric Porsche.

  • It's expensive, and there are plenty of cheaper rear-wheel-drive electric cars – including the BMW i4 and the Tesla Model 3 – with similar performance and longer ranges. You can check the latest prices on our New Car Deals pages.

  • If you can afford it, you certainly won’t find the Taycan disappointing. It's surprisingly practical and its quick charging speed makes it a fine long-distance electric car especially with the Performance Battery option.

At a glance
New car deals
Target Price from £79,255
Swipe to see used car deals
Nearly new deals
From £63,850
RRP price range £79,255 - £186,355
Number of trims (see all)10
Number of engines (see all)14
Available fuel types (which is best for you?)electric
Available doors options 4
Warranty 3 years / No mileage cap
Company car tax at 20% (min/max) £158 / £373
Company car tax at 40% (min/max) £317 / £745
Available colours