Big, Blue & Sensible – The Porsche Panamera V6

Published on August 22nd, 2011

Quite a while back, the team had the opportunity to during the Porsche Driving Experience to sample the finest of what the Stuttgart marquee had to offer, which was plenty. And the list goes from the likes of the Cayenne, to the very latest Cayman R.

One car from the entire experience however prompted our resident coffee drinker Botak in saying that, “It would be orgasmic to have the Panamera in a touge session.” You’ve guessed it. This is about that.

Not just any Panamera though. This is actually the V6-powered base model Panamera, which looks identical to the V8 brethren (for good and bad reasons). Clothed with the special Aqua Blue Metallic paint, the Panamera that we have acquired for the day thanks to the courtesy of Porsche Malaysia was stunning to behold, and did nothing to hide the sheer size of it all.

Up front, the Panamera is undeniably a Porsche as it proudly wears the golden crest of the Stuttgart manufacturer, on a sculpted hood that aids in its aggressive looks – though it may only be a V6 in this case. In fact, the SportDesign package on this particular test model dials it up a notch further, which somehow carries an uncanny resemblance to the high performance 911s.

The 911 look is carried over to the side and rear – think of it as stretched and you’ll know what I mean. Though most people find that the design is rather controversial, I for a fact think that the new and unique shape grows on you quite a bit, and I kinda like it. At least you won’t mistake the bulbous rear of the car with any other on the road.

But say what you want about the looks, the sedan’s interior is simply beautiful, in a precise, German kind of way. Though full of toggles and switches, the fact that each button is specifically laid out with the most used functions within an arm’s reach, which creates a cockpit-like environment. Leather is used generously around the cabin, cladding the dashboard, door panels, and to the comfortable but supportive rear and front seats.

And support is what we got indeed when we drove the Panamera about.

It would be un-proper to say that the point of the Panamera is actually not to go really fast, but unless you were to buy the Panamera S or Turbo, that seems to be the case of the V6.

Rated at an approx 300 horsepower and 295 lb-ft. of torque, the new V6 engine is essentially a version of the company’s 4.8-liter V8 with two-cylinders chopped off. Featuring a 90-degree cylinder bank and advanced features like direct injection, the engine delivers an above average fuel economy of 7.65km/liter (13.07 liter/100km).

The smaller size also allowed Porsche to mount the engine further in towards the centre, which gives it an above average fuel economy, better overall performance and a driving sensation much like a four-door go kart.

During the Porsche Driving experience, we got a first taste of what the Panamera’s forte is – handling. Handling is spot on with plenty of feel through the meaty steering wheel, which does a tremendous job in hiding the fact that the Panamera is actually about 2 tonnes. Making the car dance around the slaloms was almost effortless. Overall balance of the car is excellent and the huge but progressive brakes do a tremendous job of hauling the car to a proper stop.

The bottom line.

We didn’t manage to bring the car to “touge”, much like botak initially expected. We had some problems with the slightly worned tires that came with the car which prompted us to be a lot more careful than usual. However, the Panamera V6 made a rather huge impact onto us when we first drove it during the Porsche Driving Experience, so it was easy to recall what it felt like.

Also, it’s not hard to see why the Panamera is a great car. With the usual reliability that you get with a Porsche, plenty of interior space plus respectable mileage numbers especially in the V6, it’s also not hard to see why it makes real sense.

words: Damion Chee  pix: Damion Chee & Hazwan Najims

Comments

  1. Posted by oreedo on August 22nd, 2011, 15:15

    Very nice machine… subtle… yet ample…

    gogogogoTRAFFIC…..

  2. Posted by Jeo on August 24th, 2011, 00:05

    I wish it could stay on my front porch a little while longer. Love the V6 to bits and i wonder how love struck we can be if we can have our gearhappy-steering paws on the V8 😉

    Although its the base model, but this alone would do the trick to have it driven daily. I want one!

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