Beirut. Media representatives from across the city have been treated to an exclusive preview of the new Porsche Panamera, weeks ahead of its official public reveal at the upcoming Paris Motor Show.
At an invite-only event held at the atelier of local architect Bernard Khoury in the Jisr sector 77, journalists were able to get up close and personal to Porsche’s latest offering, which combines genuine sports car performance with the comfort of a luxury sedan.
In its second generation, a complete transformation sees the Panamera advance to become a performance icon in the luxury class with a systematically improved model concept. From redesigned engines and a new transmission, a perfected chassis and a display concept reinterpreted for the future, the four-door sedan has been redeveloped to the last detail. Already the results have been noticeable with the measured lap time of 7 minutes 38 seconds achieved at the Nürburgring-Nordschleife, confirming the new Panamera Turbo’s position as the fastest luxury saloon in the world.
Addressing the media at the exclusive preview event, Assaad Raphael, Chairman and General Manager of Porsche Centre Lebanon, said: “The new Panamera is a revolution in its segment with what is a complete redevelopment, crafted for the future with best-in-class performance and a new dimension of digitalisation options. The development teams in Weissach have kept only three things from the predecessor, the positioning of the Panamera as a true sports car in the luxury segment, the model’s name and the Porsche crest on the bonnet. With the Porsche DNA represented from all angles, the new Panamera boasts an incredible regeneration.”
With more power than ever, the new Panamera blurs the lines between the world of ambitious sports cars and comfortable sedans. Driving this change is the second generation of redesigned engines with even more power and significantly improved efficiency. The Panamera Turbo launches with the most powerful engine of the model series, its 4.0-litre biturbo V8 developing 550 hp and a maximum torque of 770 Nm. It boasts 30 hp more power than the previous model, and a maximum torque increase of 70 Nm. The eight-cylinder engine accelerates the Panamera Turbo to 100 km/h in 3.8 seconds while the Sport Chrono Package cuts the sprint time to just 3.6 seconds with a top speed of 306 km/h.
In the Panamera 4S the 2.9-litre V6 biturbo engine develops a maximum power of 440hp, an increase of 20 hp on the previous model. The new six-cylinder delivers 550 Nm with the car sprinting to 100 km/h in just 4.4 seconds (4.2 seconds with the Sport Chrono Package) and reaching a top speed of 289 km/h.
The second generation Panamera is the first model from Porsche to feature a dual-clutch gearbox with eight instead of seven gears. The new transmission enables an even better gear ratio spread and a further reduction in fuel consumption, as the seventh and eighth gears are designed as engine speed reducing overdrive gears. The top speed is reached in sixth gear.
The Panamera’s best-in-class performance results needed to be paired with the typical Porsche driving comfort which is further enhanced through innovative systems, such as an adaptive air suspension with new three-chamber technology, including Porsche Active Suspension Management, the enhanced Porsche Dynamic Chassis Control Sport as well as a rear axle steering, adapted from the 918 Spyder and 911 Turbo.
The benchmark performance results are complemented by a new design with even more dynamic proportions. The sharpened exterior character defines a car which is longer, wider and taller but, with a reduced ride height, appears lower. Pronounced shoulders and athletic flanks add to the already powerful image – unmistakably a Panamera, unmistakably a Porsche sports car.
From the side, the typical Porsche flyline creates a clear style link to the brand’s design icon, the 911, along with the lines of the rear body where three-dimensional LED lights with integrated four-point brake lights are connected by a narrow LED strip. The elements together create an unmistakable night design enhanced further by the extendible rear spoiler now finished in body colour.
The typical Porsche interior mirrors the design and technical advances seen throughout the new model. Black panel surfaces and interactive displays combine to present a clear and intuitive user interface like that of smartphones and tablets. Conventional hard keys and control instruments have been reduced significantly, replaced by touch-sensitive panels and individually configurable displays in the new Porsche Advanced Cockpit.
The new Porsche Panamera models are available to order now. The basic retail prices in Lebanon are as follows: