Niagara Falls, Canada. Porsche presented its first fully-electric sports car to the public today with a world premiere held simultaneously on three continents. “The Taycan links our heritage to the future. It carries forward the success story of our brand – a brand that has fascinated and thrilled people the world over for more than 70 years,” said Oliver Blume, Chairman of the Executive Board of Porsche AG, who opened the world premiere in Berlin, “This day marks the start of a new era.”
The four-door sports sedan is a unique package, offering characteristic Porsche performance and connectivity with everyday usability. At the same time, highly advanced production methods and the features of the Taycan are setting new standards in the fields of sustainability and digitalization. “We promised a true Porsche for the age of electric mobility – a fascinating sports car that not only excites in terms of its technology and driving dynamics, but also sparks a passion in people all over the world, just like its legendary predecessors have done. Now we are delivering on this promise,” emphasizes Michael Steiner, Member of the Executive Board of Porsche AG – Research and Development.
The first models in the new series are the Taycan Turbo S and Taycan Turbo. They are at the cutting edge of Porsche E-Performance and are among the most powerful production models that the sports car manufacturer currently has in its product range. Less powerful variants of these all-wheel drive vehicles will follow this year, and the first derivative to be added will be the Taycan Cross Turismo at the end of next year. By 2022, Porsche will have invested more than 6.6 billion dollars in electric mobility.
Performance meets efficiency
The flagship Turbo S version of the Taycan can generate up to 750 horsepower (560 kW) of power in combination with Launch Control and overboost, while the Taycan Turbo can produce up to 670 horsepower (500 kW). The Taycan Turbo S will therefore accelerate from zero to 60 mph in 2.6 seconds, while the Taycan Turbo can complete this sprint in 3.0 seconds. The top track speed of both all-wheel-drive models is 161 mph.
The Taycan is the first production vehicle with a system voltage of 800 volts instead of the commonly used 400 volts for electric cars. This is a particular advantage for Taycan drivers on the road: under ideal conditions, the charging time from five to 80 percent State of Charge (SoC) is just 22.5 minutes, with a maximum charging power (peak) of up to 270 kW. The overall capacity of the 800V high voltage battery is 93.4 kWh. Taycan drivers can comfortably charge their cars with up to 9.6 kW of alternating current (AC) at home using a standard SAE J1772 connector.
The EPA range estimate for North American market is pending for both vehicles.
Pure exterior design with Porsche DNA
With its clean, pure-Porsche design, the Taycan ushers in a new era. At the same time, it retains the unmistakable Porsche design DNA. From the front, it looks particularly wide and flat with highly contoured wings. The silhouette is shaped by the sporty roofline sloping downward to the rear. The highly sculpted side sections are also a strong characteristic of Porsche styling. The sleek cabin, the drawn-in rear C-pillar and the pronounced shoulders of the rear /wings result in a sharply emphasized rear, typical of the brand. There are also innovative elements such as the glass-look Porsche logo, which has been integrated into the light bar at the rear. With a coefficient of drag value as low as 0.22, the aerodynamically optimized basic shape makes a significant contribution to low energy consumption and thus long range.
Unique interior design with a wide display screen band
The cockpit signals the start of a new era of interior design at Porsche with its clear structure and a completely new architecture. The free-standing, curved instrument cluster forms the highest point on the dashboard. This places a clear focus on the driver axis. A central, 10.9-inch infotainment display and an optional passenger display are combined to form an integrated glass band in a black-panel look. All user interfaces have been designed from scratch for the Taycan. The number of classic hardware controls such as switches and buttons has been greatly reduced. Instead, control is intelligent and intuitive – using touch operation or the voice control function, which responds to the command “Hey Porsche”.
With the Taycan, Porsche offers an entirely leather-free interior option for the first time. Interiors made from innovative recycled materials underscore the sustainable concept of the electric sports car. “Foot garages” – recesses in the battery in the rear foot well – ensure seating comfort for rear seat passengers while allowing the typically low roof height found on sports cars. Two luggage compartments are available: the front compartment has a capacity of 2.8 cubic feet and the rear 12.9 cubic feet.
Innovative drive motors and a two-speed transmission
The Taycan Turbo S and Taycan Turbo have two exceptionally efficient electric ma-chines, one on the front axle and one on the rear axle, thus making the cars all-wheel drive. Both the range and the continuous power of the drive system benefit from the highly efficient permanently excited synchronous machines. The electric machine, transmission and pulse-controlled inverter are each combined into a compact drive module. The modules have the highest power density (kW per cubic foot of package space) of all electric powertrains on the market today. A special feature of the electric motors are the “hairpin” windings of the stator coils. This technology makes it possible to incorporate more copper in the stator, increasing power output and torque while maintaining the same component volume. The two-speed transmission installed on the rear axle is an innovation developed by Porsche. First gear lets the Taycan prioritize acceleration from a standing start, while second gear, with its long gear ratio, ensures high efficiency and equally high power reserves while traveling at high speeds.
Centrally-networked chassis systems
Porsche uses a centrally-networked control system for the Taycan chassis. The integrated Porsche 4D Chassis Control analyses and synchronizes all chassis systems in real time. The innovative chassis systems include adaptive air suspension with three-chamber technology including PASM (Porsche Active Suspension Management) electronic damper control, as well as the optional Porsche Dynamic Chassis Control Sport (PDCC Sport) electromechanical roll stabilization system including Porsche Torque Vectoring Plus (PTV Plus). The all-wheel drive control with two electric motors and the recuperation system are unique. At up to 265 kW, the potential recuperation power is significantly higher than that of competitors. Driving tests have shown that approximately 90 percent of everyday braking is performed by the electric machines alone – without the hydraulic brake system being activated.
Multiple driving modes allow drivers to tailor their experience on the road. The different mode profiles follow the same philosophy as in other Porsche model series, but is supplemented by a special setting which maximizes efficient operation. The four driving modes that are available include “Normal”, “Sport”, “Sport Plus”, and “Range”. In addition, individual systems can be configured as required in the “Individual” mode.
A world premiere on three continents at the same time
The world premiere of the Porsche Taycan took place simultaneously in North America, China and Europe. The most important sales markets of the new electric sports car are on these three continents. The event locations are also a synonym for three ways of sustainable energy management: Niagara Falls at the border between the US state of
New York and the Canadian province of Ontario representing hydropower, a solar farm in Neuhardenberg near Berlin representing solar power and a wind farm on Pingtan Island, less than a mile from the Chinese city of Fuzhou in the province of Fujian representing wind power. We perceive these natural forces with all our senses in exactly the same way as we experience the impressive power delivery of the first all-electric sports car from Porsche. This one-time triple event was broadcast worldwide via live stream on NewsTV.porsche.com.
The Genesis of “Taycan”
Six hundred options, one choice: Taycan. What the name of the first fully electric Porsche means—and how it came to be.
The mission is to find a name for a new vehicle that has no predecessor. “Honestly, it’s hard to imagine a more exciting challenge,” says Kjell Gruner, director of marketing at Porsche. “Pure expression. Letters and a meaning that find their place in the history of Porsche and the history of the automobile.” This car is, after all, the first purely electrically powered Porsche. It unites all the characteristics of a sports car from Zuffenhausen, fulfilling every expectation: undeniably exclusive, yet without extravagance. Its virtues: power, speed, superiority in every measure—and extremely beautiful, of course.
Model names at Porsche establish a connection between the respective series and its characteristics. The Boxster gained its name by combining the roadster style with its boxer engine. The Cayenne, as expected, added some spice, and the Cayman was so named for its ferocity and agility. Macan unites poise, power, fascination, and dynamism, while the endurance-optimized Panamera could win the famed and fearsome Carrera Panamericana. And the new model? The name of this four-door will not bear any numbers like 911, 718, or 918; instead, it should convey everything that makes the car special—and especially alluring. The name should highlight its inimitable significance within the Porsche family. It should be fresh, dynamic, gripping—not some technocratic portmanteau, but a name that tells an emotional, coherent story. And ultimately it should be a name that unites tradition, modernity, and the future. In short, it should reflect the character of the vehicle and meld unmistakably with the Porsche brand.
When the project team first meets, it hasn’t yet been decided how the Taycan will look in detail. Designers, engineers working on the new series, specialists from marketing and sales, in-house and external lawyers, and brand and brand-law experts all come together. “All aspects of the name determination process are covered: automobile-related, creative, technical, legal, and linguistic,” says Michael Reichert, project manager for the Taycan naming project. “A name for a car is ultimately an emotional decision—but one that should be based on facts and arguments. That requires a systematic approach and a lot of attention to detail,” explains Gruner.
One key question: what distinguishes the new car—what impression does its shape make on the observer, the customer? Answer: because an engine block in the conventional sense isn’t required, one of its characteristic design features is the exceptionally low front section of the car. The body is shot through with air, giving the overall impression that the electric sports car is lively and dynamic. Could terms from the worlds of hydro- and aerodynamics be a good starting point for a suitable name? The team inches forward, discussing, experimenting, favoring, discarding, and rethinking things. First in a small group, then in a continually expanding process involving more and more people. In total, the experts develop six hundred ideas, which they then gradually whittle down to a few favorites. Pairs of native speakers representing twenty-three languages consider the sound and meaning of potential model names to rule out unpleasant or unsuitable associations from the outset. Lawyers deliberate every conceivable risk of trademark violation, inspect databases around the world containing millions of registered trademarks, revise names, and locate rights holders. A Herculean task that ultimately lasts a year and a half.
In the final stretch, the marketing experts select their favorite names, assembling a list to be presented to the assembled board in the autumn of 2017. The decision is made: Taycan. A name that fulfills every phonetic, legal, creative, strategic, and model-specific requirement. Composed of two terms of Turkic origin, this word can be roughly translated as “soul of a spirited young horse.” And that’s exactly what the first fully electric Porsche will be: lively, impetuous, vigorous, light-footed on long stretches without tiring, and free-spirited. The name reflects both the source and the future of the brand: the horse on the Porsche crest, the expression of its soul, on its way into a new era of the sports car. A perfect fit, too, with the slogan of the advertising campaign: “Soul, electrified.” Taycan also has positive associations in many of the world’s languages: in Japanese, for instance, taikan means roughly “physical experience”—driving in its most electrifying form.
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