The Porsche Taycan is nearing its official reveal, and the German carmaker is currently conducting the all-electric car’s final tests. As the vehicle’s last details get ironed out, auto publication CNET Roadshow was able to get an opportunity to ride shotgun in one of Porsche’s Taycan prototypes in Sweden, to experience the company’s next-generation vehicle firsthand.
The publication was able to take a ride in a test mule of the Taycan’s top-tier variant, a version speculated to be dubbed as the “Taycan Turbo.” Just as revealed in previous sightings, the Taycan Turbo boasts 600 horsepower with an all-wheel-drive powertrain that enables 0-60 mph times of
The Porsche Taycan will utilize a regenerative braking system that is quite different from those used by popular electric cars like the Tesla Model S, which engage their regen braking when the driver releases the accelerator. The Taycan does not do this, as the vehicle only coasts when the accelerator is released. The Taycan’s regenerative braking only happens when drivers press lightly on the brake pedal. When the brakes are pressed harder, the Taycan’s hydraulic brakes are engaged.
Bernd Propfe, director of the Taycan’s platform product line, described the process to the publication. “Coasting is the most energy-efficient way to do it, because braking always goes along with a loss of energy, because no engine has a 100 percent ratio. We strongly believe that the customer, if he wants to brake, he should hit the brake,” he said.
While such a strategy will make one pedal driving impossible with the Taycan, the vehicle’s regenerative braking process is distinctly on-brand. Porsche prides itself as a maker of drivers’ cars, and requiring its customers to actively use both the accelerator and brake pedal while operating the Taycan could be considered part of the all-electric sedan’s genuine driving experience.
Also unique in the Taycan is the vehicle’s two-speed transmission at the rear. Electric cars like the Model S utilize a single gear transmission, partly due to the power generated by the vehicle’s electric motors. Tesla attempted a two-speed transmission in the original Roadster back in 2008, only to abandon the design after the transmission units showed a tendency to self-destruct just a fraction into the all-electric sports car’s lifespan. If Porsche’s design with the Taycan is any indication, it appears that the German carmaker is confident that it can use a two-speed transmission for the all-electric four-door sedan without compromising anything.
Propfe proved quite secretive when it came to the Taycan’s sound, only stating that it will be digitally created and it will change depending on the specific mode of the all-electric car. The platform line director added that the Taycan’s sound is still very much in development. Fortunately, this sound was captured recently in a sighting of a Taycan test mule in Copenhagen, Denmark. While taking off on a parking lot ramp, the Taycan gave off a truly unique noise that invoked a mix between a traditional high-performance sports car and a spaceship.
The Taycan’s sound is best heard firsthand. Make sure to keep the volume up.
And here’s CNET Roadshow‘s segment on its first ride with the Taycan.