13 Discontinued Cars For 2019

1. Alfa Romeo 4C Coupe

13 Discontinued Cars For 2019

Alfa drops the closed-roof version of its low-slung 4C sports car for 2019, but will retain the convertible version for the near future.

2. Cadillac ATS Sedan

13 Discontinued Cars For 2019

With Cadillac consolidating its sedan lineup, the 4-door version of the ATS isn’t returning for 2019, though the Coupe iterations will continue for at least another year.

3. Chevrolet City Express

13 Discontinued Cars For 2019

This small Nissan-built commercial van never resonated with buyers, so Chevrolet quietly stopped production of the City Express, and it won’t return for 2019 and beyond.

4. Ford C-Max Hybrid/Energi

13 Discontinued Cars For 2019

Both the gas/electric-powered and plug-in hybrid versions of Ford’s small-but-tall wagon won’t return for 2019; we suspect it will eventually be replaced in the line by a hybrid crossover.

5. Ford Fiesta

13 Discontinued Cars For 2019

With sales of the industry’s smallest cars in a slump, Ford discontinues the Fiesta for 2019 in favor of the recently introduced subcompact EcoSport crossover.

6. Ford Focus

13 Discontinued Cars For 2019

Ford’s compact car line is likewise being dropped for 2019, but the Focus name will live on next year when it returns as the SUV-like tall-roofed Focus Active.

7. Ford Taurus

13 Discontinued Cars For 2019

Once the brand’s top-selling auto, sales of the full-size Ford Taurus sedan have stalled in recent years, and it’s being dropped from the line for 2019 as the automaker instead concentrates on its truck and SUV lines.

8. Lincoln MKT

13 Discontinued Cars For 2019

The three-row Lincoln MKT is being cancelled for 2019 and will be recast early next year as the all-new Aviator.

9. Lincoln MKX

13 Discontinued Cars For 2019

As part of the brand’s return to using actual vehicle names, the Lincoln MKX disappears for 2019 and will be replaced by a renamed and revamped five-passenger crossover SUV, the Nautilus.

11. Toyota Corolla iM

13 Discontinued Cars For 2019

The former Scion iM is redesigned with myriad improvements for 2019 and gets a new name, the Corolla Hatchback.

12. Toyota Yaris iA

13 Discontinued Cars For 2019

Only the name of this Mazda-built subcompact sedan is being discontinued for 2019. Previously called the Scion iA, it’s being renamed the Yaris Sedan.

13. Volkswagen Touareg

13 Discontinued Cars For 2019

The five-passenger Touareg proved to be too expensive – not to mention hard-to-pronounce – for most U.S. families. It’s being discontinued for 2019 in favor of the new three-row Atlas.

Source: 13 Discontinued Cars For 2019


BMW i8 Roadster Gets Improved Electric Range

BMW i8 Roadster Gets Improved Electric Range

BMW unveiled the roadster version of its i8 gasoline electric plug-in hybrid sports car, and said it included an improved power plant which was more efficient and with more electric-only range than the coupe.

The i8 roadster is on sale in the U.S. priced at $164,295. (Making clear it is already on sale in the U.S).

BMW i8 Roadster Gets Improved Electric Range

The i8 Roadster is powered by a hybrid synchronous electric motor and a three-cylinder gasoline engine. The engine’s power is fed to the rear wheels through a six-speed automatic transmission, while the electric motor propels the front wheels via a two-speed automatic gearbox.

BMW said it has increased the amount of driving where the electric motor is solely responsible for powering the car. The combustion engine is only brought into play when accelerating hard, and is switched off again more frequently with a measured driving style. Underpinning its improved electric only range is an updated version of the i8’s lithium-ion battery. The high-voltage unit is located centrally under the car, and its cell capacity is increased from 20 to 34 Ah. All of which means the motor has more energy at its disposal. Plus, the cell configuration allows a 12 hp increase in peak output to 143 hp.

BMW i8 Roadster Gets Improved Electric Range

The improved technology means the i8 Roadster can cover up to 33 miles on electricity only, up from about 22 miles before.

The i8’s 1.54 liter combustion engine has also been improved with the turbocharged three-cylinder unit producing 231 hp. The system output produced by the electric motor and engine acting in unison has increased to 374 hp from the coupe’s 357 hp. The new i8 Roadster takes 4.6 seconds to reach 60 mph and has an electronically limited top speed of 155 mph.

Source: BMW i8 Roadster Gets Improved Electric Range

The Coolest New Cars For 2019

Here’s a quick look at 15 of the most significant new cars headed to dealerships, with images for each of them featured in the accompanying slideshow. We’ll take a look at the hottest new SUVs and trucks for 2019 in a separate post.

Aston Martin DBS Superleggera

The Coolest New Cars For 2019

Aston Martin brings back – and combines – two famed nameplates from its storied history for its new flagship coupe, the DBS Superleggera. Gorgeously styled with fluidly flowing body work crafted from carbon fiber, it’s 2+2 interior is equally appealing, with front-seat occupants treated to sport seats upholstered in supple “aromatic” leather and Alcantara. A 5.2-liter twin-turbocharged V12 engine generates a mighty 715 horsepower and, assisted by a performance-enhanced eight-speed automatic transmission, can launch the car to 62 mph in a sudden 3.4 seconds and hit a terrifying top speed of 211 mph. Riding on 21-inch rims and Pirelli P-Zero performance tires, and with assorted performance-enhancing systems at hand, the car is engineered to hug the corners as tightly as a toddler with a teddy bear.

Audi A8

The Coolest New Cars For 2019

A fourth-generation version of Audi’s flagship sedan debuts for 2019 with a fresh design language. A spacious leather and wood trimmed interior coddles its occupants in comfort, and features Audi’s configurable Virtual Cockpit instrumentation, with dual touchscreens with haptic feedback for the infotainment system. Opulent options include heated center console and arm rests, a dual-tablet rear entertainment system, and executive-class rear seats that recline, massage, and feature adjustable head- and footrests. It comes powered by a 3.0-liter turbocharged V6 engine with 48-volt “mild hybrid” technology, and rides on an active suspension for improved vehicle dynamics. A new frontal auto-braking safety system can help prevent against crashes with cross-traffic at intersections. The new A8 can even be pulled into and out of a garage or tight parking space remotely.

Bentley Continental GT

The Coolest New Cars For 2019

The third generation of Bentley’s sporty and stately Continental GT coupe bows for 2019, and continues its familiar long-hooded appearance, albeit with added refinement nose to tail. A 6.0-liter W12 engine (it’s like a pair of conjoined V6s) pushes the GT’s hefty curb weight along at a rapid clip (0-60 mph in 3.6 seconds) with 626 horsepower and a forceful 664 pound-feet of torque; top speed is a warp-nine 207 mph. An electronically controlled suspension balances ride comfort and energetic handling abilities via selectable driving modes. As one would expect, the four-seat coupe’s interior is up to Bentley’s over-the-top standards and is upholstered in rich leather and trimmed in wood and piano black finishes. Also, as one would expect, the list of standard features is exhaustive with almost limitless customization available.

BMW M850i xDrive

The Coolest New Cars For 2019

BMW brings back the 8 Series coupe after a 20-year hiatus as an appropriately long, wide, and low slung ride, with what BMW calls “double bubble” contouring. Headlamps incorporate both LED and laser light technology and are said to bethe slimmest used in any BMW to date. An optional carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic roof reduces the coupe’s curb weight and lowers its center of gravity for a notch better handling. Inside, sport seats are trimmed in Merino Individual leather with contrast stitching. The M850i xDrive packs a punch with a twin-turbocharged 4.4-liter 530-horsepower V8 engine; mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission, it can leap to 60 mph in just 3.6 seconds. All-wheel-drive and a self-parking function come standard, with an adaptive racing-inspired suspension among its many performance-minded options.

Chevrolet Corvette ZR1

The Coolest New Cars For 2019

As automotive enthusiasts wait for a coming mid-engine Corvette, Chevrolet brings back the rip-roaring ZR1 as a bona fide Ferrari fighter. Coming in both coupe (with a removable roof panel) and convertible variants, it’s the fastest ‘Vette ever, thanks to a new dual fuel-injected supercharged 6.2-liter V8 engine that channels a speedy 755 horsepower to the rear wheels via either a seven-speed manual or eight-speed automatic transmission. A model-specific front fascia channels copious amounts of air for propulsion-system and drivetrain cooling. A carbon-fiber “halo” hood is open in the middle to accommodate the supercharger/intercooler assembly. An optional ZTK Track Performance Package includes an adjustable high-wing spoiler for added downforce, a front splitter with carbon-fiber end caps, Michelin summer performance tires, and specific chassis and Magnetic Ride Control system tuning. It’s packed with features and starts at around $120,000

Genesis G70

The Coolest New Cars For 2019

Hyundai’s luxury division debuts this BMW 3 Series-esq rear-drive compact sedan for 2019 with assertive styling. A 2.0-liter with 252 horsepower is standard with a turbocharged 365-horsepower V6 available. An eight-speed automatic transmission with launch control comes standard, though the base rear-drive 2.0-liter model can instead be fitted with a six-speed manual gearbox; all-wheel-drive is optional. A multi-link suspension at the front and rear along with a torque vectoring systemafford entertaining handling, with multiple drive modes at hand to fine-tune powertrain response, steering feel, all-wheel drive torque distribution, suspension firmness, and even the engine’s sound. Standard features include a full rack of accident avoidance systems.

Honda Insight

The Coolest New Cars For 2019

Honda brings back the Insight name, and this time around it’s a midsize four-door hybrid that’s capable of a penny-pinching 55 mpg around town. With a dynamic front end treatment and coupe-like profile it sports a decidedly forceful look. Power comes from an electric-assisted 1.5-liter four-cylinder gasoline engine with the equivalent of 151 horsepower and a lively 197 pound-feet of torque. Frugal-minded drivers can put the car EV mode for limited all-electric operation, and can increase regenerative braking to help bolster battery charging. Efficient battery packaging enables a spacious 15.1 cubic feet of trunk space, while maintaining a roomy interior. There’s even a selectable sport mode that affords livelier operation.

Hyundai Veloster

The Coolest New Cars For 2019

Hyundai’s small and sporty three-door front-drive hatchback gets a major redesign for 2019 with burlier styling. The standard engine is a 2.0-liter with 147 horsepower, while the Turbo version packs a 1.6-liter turbo-four with 201 horses; the former can be mated to either a six-speed manual or automatic transmission, while the latter offers a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic as an alternative to the manual. The sportiest N version leaps off the line with a 275-horsepower turbo-four and the six-speed manual. Automatic-equipped models include selectable driving modes, while Turbo models feature an active engine sound feature that boosts the exhaust note for added visceral effect. An active cornering vectoring control helps maintain crisp handling. Assorted collision-preventing systems and infotainment features are included with Amazon Alexa, and Android Wear/Apple Watch connectivity available.

Kia Forte

The Coolest New Cars For 2019

Still a great car for younger and budget-minded drivers, Kia refreshes its compact sedan for 2019 and imbues it with handsome styling inside and out that makes it look like a costlier car. A revamped 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine generates an estimated 147 horsepower and can be mated to either a six-speed manual or a gearless CVT automatic transmission. As befits a car with youthful appeal, full smartphone connectivity is included with the Apple Car Play and Android Auto interfaces incorporated; a wireless phone-charging pad is newly available. For safety’s sake, the Forte can now be fitted with forward auto-braking, adaptive cruise control, a blind-spot monitor, and a lane keeping assist system.

Lexus ES

The Coolest New Cars For 2019

The midsize Lexus ES luxury sedan comes in a fully redesigned version for 2019 with added pizazz and personality. It’s longer, lower, and wider, and comes wrapped in dynamically recast bodywork with additional curves and creases and the automaker’s signature spindle-shaped grille. A 3.5-liter V6 engine sends 302-horsepower to the front wheels via a new eight-speed automatic transmission. An F-Sport iteration is newly added to the line and can be fitted an Adaptive Variable Suspension to ratchet up the sedan’s cornering prowess without undue ride harshness. A hybrid version combines a new 2.5-liter four-cylinder gasoline engine with an electric motor to realize the equivalent of 215 horsepower at an estimated 44 mpg in city/highway driving. The Apple Car Play interface is new this year – it’s also Amazon Alexa-enabled – with a full range of connectivity and safety features included.

Mercedes-Benz AMG GT Four-Door Coupe

The Coolest New Cars For 2019

Aimed squarely at the Porsche Panamera, this new four-door fastback comes wrapped in assertively muscular styling, and is roomy enough inside to serve as a daily driver. Its long hood can house either an in-line six-cylinder engine with 429 horsepower, or either of two bi-turbo 4.0-liter V8s with 577 or 630 galloping horses; the latter is claimed to reach 60 mph in a scenery-blurring 3.1 seconds. A nine-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel-drive come standard, with a “race start” function enabling peak acceleration. The V8 models include active rear axle steering (at speeds up to 62 mph, the rear wheels point in the opposite direction to the front wheels) for added agility and stability. What’s more, the AMG GT Four-Door Coupe includes its own sporty fragrance and can be fitted with Mercedes’ “energizing” comfort control that adjusts various vehicle functions to relax or refresh the driver and passengers according to predefined programs.

Nissan Altima

The Coolest New Cars For 2019

Nissan gives the midsize Altima Sedan a major makeover for 2019 and infuses it with added technology. The overall look is bolder than before, coming capped with Nissan’s big and buck-toothy “V-motion” front grille. A purposeful interior features both a touchscreen for the infotainment system (with the Android Auto and Apple CarPlay interfaces) and analog controls for intuitive operation. A new 2.0-liter variable-compression turbocharged four-cylinder engine replaces the former V6 and delivers a potent 248 horsepower with a punchy 273 pound-feet of torque. A 2.5-liter four with 188 horsepower comes standard; both are mated to a CVT automatic transmission, with all-wheel-drive newly available. The nearly autonomous ProPILOT system is optional. Among its many available safety features is an automatic rear braking system that prevents the driver from running over stationary objects while in reverse gear.

Toyota Avalon

The Coolest New Cars For 2019

Toyota remakes its full-size Avalon for 2019 as a longer, lower, wider, and more stylish sedan. It’s powered by a 3.5-liter V6 engine that channels 301 horsepower through the front wheels via an eight-speed automatic transmission. Meanwhile, the Avalon Hybrid features a 2.5-liter four-cylinder gas engine that’s augmented by an electric motor to realize the equivalent of 215 horsepower; mated to a gearless CVT automatic it’s rated at 43 mpg in city driving. The Avalon’s spacious interior is trimmed in piano black, wood, and aluminum, and features soft-touch surfaces for a luxury look and feel. Performance-enhancing options include an adaptive variable suspension with selectable driving modes. Standard safety systems are plentiful as is smartwatch, Amazon Alexa, and Apple CarPlay compatibility; the options list includes an ear-splitting 1,200-watt JBL audio system.

Toyota Corolla Hatchback

The Coolest New Cars For 2019

Replacing the former Corolla (Scion) iM is a revamped and renamed compact Corolla Hatchback. Longer, lower and wider, it gets fresh styling and a new 2.0-liter direct-injected four-cylinder engine that puts 168 horsepower to the road via a six-speed manual transmission or a CVT automatic with 10 simulated “gearshifts.” A revised suspension affords a livelier attitude. Standard safety features include forward auto-braking with pedestrian detection, adaptive cruise control, a lane keeping system, and automatic high beam headlamps. Full connectivity is standard and includes Apple CarPlay and Amazon Alexa interfaces.

Volkswagen Arteon

The Coolest New Cars For 2019

The artfully styled VW Arteon “four door coupe” replaces the CC at the top of Volkswagen’s car line for 2019 with added style and substance. It rides on a new platform that’s stretches the former CC’s wheelbase by five inches; along with a wider body, this affords additional interior room. Inside, the cabin is trimmed in rich looking materials, with leatherette upholstery standard and Nappa leather optional. It comes powered by a 2.0-liter turbocharged and direct-injected 268-horsepower four-cylinder engine that’s mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission; all-wheel-drive is available across the line. The suspension features a standard adaptive damping system to balance the car’s ride and handling characteristics. A host of accident-avoidance features come standard, with items like stop-and-go adaptive cruise control, Digital Cockpit reconfigurable displays, and a hands-free trunk release optional.

Source: The Coolest New Cars For 2019

Is Ferrari Working On A Hybrid, 4-Cylinder Engine?

 Cars And Concepts Is Ferrari Working On A Hybrid, 4-Cylinder Engine?

The discovered patent’s design could be applied to a number of next-generation turbocharged Ferrari engines as a mild-hybrid system, following up on the hybrid system of the LaFerrari.

A new hybrid Ferrari engine could be in the works if a new patent uncovered by Autoguide makes it to production.

According to a filing with the EU patent office, Ferrari is developing a forced-induction engine that contains a turbine in the interior of the exhaust duct that powers an electric generator that stores energy. The electrical energy is then directed to an electric motor that powers the front wheels, and it also sends power to an electrically assisted compressor that can send air into the engine itself.

There are a couple advantages to this design, as Autoguide notes.

First and foremost, there is the potential to reduce turbo lag because the electric motor powering the front wheels can compensate by providing a boost of power when needed.

Second, Ferrari expects this turbine to improve exhaust sound: the faster the turbine spins, the more high-pitched the exhaust tone becomes, while slower spin generates a deeper tone. The adjustable turbine will be able to modulate the exhaust note as required, as opposed to an exhaust valve which really has just two settings. This doesn’t mean the setting of this turbine will govern the engine’s performance — that’s where the electrical generator comes in, providing power even if the turbine is modulated to turn slower. At least that’s the goal of the design.

 Cars And Concepts Is Ferrari Working On A Hybrid, 4-Cylinder Engine?

The patent shows that a turbine could be used to generate electrical energy for reducing turbo lag, while also modifying the pitch of the exhaust note.

Will we actually see (and hear) this hybrid? That’s still up in the air — Ferrari hasn’t committed to placing it in any given model. But the patent filing suggests that it could work with any cylinder count, not just a four-pot as depicted in the patent drawing. A V-8 could also use such a system if we assume that the patent depicts one half of a V-8 engine.

You have to turn back a few chapters in the automaker’s history — all the way back to the 1950s — to find Ferrari race cars using small-displacement four-cylinder engines. A four-cylinder Ferrari is more likely now than in the 1980s when four-cylinders just couldn’t produce that much power. Given the automotive industry’s adoption of high-strung four-pots with turbochargers and superchargers (and other stuff bolted on), it’s not too much of a stretch to picture a Ferrari offering this hybrid as an option.

Especially now that every sports car feels compelled to be a hybrid in some fashion, even a “mild” one.

Source: Is Ferrari Working On A Hybrid, 4-Cylinder Engine?

VW Recalls Golfs, Golf Sportwagens, Citing Rollaway Risk

VW Recalls Golfs, Golf Sportwagens, Citing Rollaway Risk

Volkswagen Group of America Inc. is recalling 33,168 Golfs and Golf Sportwagens in the U.S. to address a rollaway risk. Another 24,123 vehicles are also being recalled in Canada.

The automaker says that because of a buildup of silicate, a microswitch contact that detects the position of the ignition switch and prevents the key from being removed while the vehicle is not in “park” is defective.

“Removing the key while the shift lever is in a position other than ‘Park’ increases the risk of an unintended vehicle rollaway that may result in personal injury or a crash,” the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration filing states.

It was not immediately clear if any injuries or accidents related to the defect have occurred.

Volkswagen owners will be notified, and dealers will install an additional switch and new circuit board to address the issue.

The recall involves eight vehicle models from 2015 to 2018 equipped with automatic transmissions. Models with push-button start are not affected.

The automaker expects the recall to begin Sept. 8.

Credit by Alexa St. John

Source: VW Recalls Golfs, Golf Sportwagens, Citing Rollaway Risk

Aston Martin Offers Luxury In The Sky With Volante Vision Concept

Aston Martin Offers Luxury In The Sky With Volante Vision Concept

Volante Vision is an autonomous flying car concept by Aston Martin

This is the Volante Vision Concept by Aston Martin. Previewed this week at the Farnborough Airshow, it isn’t quite the marque’s usual luxury sports car or grand tourer. Rather, this is Aston Martin’s vision for an autonomous flying machine to be produced in the near future. The idea is for this three-seater craft to bring “fast, efficient and congestion free luxurious travel”. The marque sees the Volante Vision as the ideal transport for urban and inter-city commutes.

Aston Martin Offers Luxury In The Sky With Volante Vision Concept

Volante Vision retains the essential Aston Martin visual theme

“With the population in urban areas continuing to grow, congestion in towns and cities will become increasingly demanding,” explains Aston Martin president and chief executive Dr Andy Palmer. “We need to look at alternative solutions to reduce congestion, cut pollution and improve mobility. Air travel will be a crucial part in the future of transportation,” he adds.

Created in partnership with Cranfield University, Cranfield Aerospace Solutions and Rolls-Royce engineering, the concept aircraft will be hybrid-powered and with vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) capabilities in mind.

Aston Martin Offers Luxury In The Sky With Volante Vision Concept

It will be hybrid-powered and with vertical take-off and landing

It also retains the essential Aston Martin visual theme – albeit adapted for futuristic air travel. The front aerofoil, for instance, is a nod to the Valkyrie hypercar splinter and the outline takes from the contemporary Aston Martin grille. “We have used forms and proportions that express the same devotion to design, engineering and beauty that shape our cars,” says design director Marek Reichman.

Aston Martin Offers Luxury In The Sky With Volante Vision Concept

The marque sees this as the ideal commuter vehicle, for urban and inter-city air connections

Lately, Aston Martin has been dipping its toes in the wider world of luxury – fashion and lifestyle, nautical, even property. Reichman says, “We are at the beginning of a new generation of urban transportation, vertical mobility is no longer a fantasy. We have a unique chance to create a luxury concept aircraft that will represent the ultimate fusion of art and technology.”

Source: Aston Martin Offers Luxury In The Sky With Volante Vision Concept

Porsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo

Porsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo: Complex Name For A 680 Horsepower Super-Sportwagen

Porsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo

Porsche’s 680HP Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo can match a one-ton lighter Porsche 911 GT3 from standstill to 60 mph. A unique interpretation of Sportwagen and Gentleman’s Express.

Two measurables justify the significant jump in price from a 550-horsepower Panamera Turbo to the 680-horsepower Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo. Gasoline twin-turbo V8 and electric motor seamlessly, undetectably blend to deliver maximum torque of 626 lb. ft. from 1400 to 6000 rpm, a miracle of scripting and mechanical engineering. Second, all that torque feeding through an 8-speed dual-clutch gearbox and all-wheel drive governed with Porsche Launch Control ensures this two-and-a-half ton, plush, roomy Grosser Sportwagen can rub shoulders and wheel hubs with a one-ton lighter Porsche 911 GT3 from standstill to 60 mph, the job complete in 3.2 seconds. Here we have redefinition of Sportwagen, redefinition of Gentleman’s Express, a performing artist that elaborates Porsche’s sporting character. It meets my most important measurable: a unique experience.

Porsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo

No matter how one toys with the throttle, there is no seam between electric power and gas engine to be found.

The Turismo Turbo Hybrid’s (abbreviation of the model name for the sake of…brevity) highway roll-on acceleration impresses equally. One can stealthily glide through traffic with less conspicuous speed differentials, the powertrain not required to drop down gears, the V8 burbling. Squeeze down hard on the throttle or better still use the push-to-pass button on the steering wheel that jumps the gearbox straight to the optimal gear and throttle position for maximum thrust and the disrupted air of this Grosser Sportwagen’s wake will rattle the side glass of lesser cars.

Porsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo

Ceramic brakes measure 16.653-in. front and 16.14-in. rear. Front calipers have 10—yes, you read that as 10—pistons that apply even pressure across the disc’s broad clamping surface. In Sport +, pneumatic suspension drops fully, a fender/tire gap of maybe two fingers.

Gasoline V8 shut off, Turismo Turbo Hybrid has a quiet, contemplative nature. E-Mode electric drive takes twice as long to reach 60 mph, just over six seconds, which is enough to dust off plebeian CUVs, though clearly no counter for ludicrous Teslas. E-Mode has the sensibility of Star Trek impulse drive, easily moving the car in boulevard traffic, tires and electric motor whispering. With light throttle in E-Mode, Turismo Turbo Hybrid has range up to 31 miles (50 km). Porsche’s battery-electric Taycan will be the highest expression of this evolving strand of Porsche DNA.

Porsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo

Panamera has classical German sports car seats. Headliner and roof pillars are wrapped in Alcantara to reduce glare and mask the considerable size.

E-Mode combined with Porsche’s low-speed semi-autonomous Traffic Jam system of sensors, cameras and throttle/brake/steering interventions offers peaceful transit in the moving mass of traffic on the 110 South into downtown Los Angeles. Turismo Turbo Hybrid can cruise under electric impulse power at speeds over 80 mph for short periods of time, draining the battery rapidly. Press too deeply on the throttle and the twin-turbo V8 crisply cycles into play—Ah, we re-engage Porsche Interstellar Warp Drive, capable of smearing starlight across the heavens.

Porsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo

680 horsepower from 5,750 to 6,000 rpm and 626 lb-ft. of torque between 1,400 and 6,000 rpm. A 4-liter V8 following current German practice with turbos in the Vee for a tidy package between suspension pickup points. Electric motor sits between engine and gearbox, providing “torque fill.”

Three cubic feet of liquid-cooled lithium-ion battery along with cabling and electric motor add 640 pounds, though the battery over the rear axle functions as ballast, tilting Turismo Turbo Hybrid into nearly ideal front/rear weight distribution of 49.5/50.5, which proves helpful when attacking mountain corners. Contradicting logical conclusions for such a hefty vehicle, Turismo Turbo Hybrid possesses the cornering purity one expects from any Porsche.

Porsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo

Turismo Turbo Hybrid effortlessly controlled its standard 21-inch wheels while delivering a ride bordering on plush. Rear wheels are 11.5-in wide, wearing 325/30 Michelins. They look extraordinary, straight off a supercar.

In the words of a neighbor, an engineer with multiple patents in materials science who came along for a demonstration ride, Turismo Turbo Hybrid is “Absolutely planted.” With his next breath, he marveled at the dimensions of the wheels and tires, all so perfectly damped and controlled, concluding, “Very smooth ride. Must all be computerized.” Panamera introduced 4D Chassis Control to the Porsche Lexicon of Jargon. It’s a super-brain that knits together data from all the subsystem black boxes related to suspension, steering, rear-steering, individual wheel speeds, throttle and stability control. When I first experienced Panamera Turbo two years ago at its Tech Briefing with engineers, the car demonstrated supreme competence around a race track, arcing smoothly through the big bends just as well as bullying around the dragon’s teeth of tight corners. Big, wide, stable platform.

Porsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo

Sport Turismo roofline affords tall, squared-up doorframes that allow tall person to gracefully tumble backward into a rear seat.

But in the end, the central theme of Turismo Turbo Hybrid is easy, affirmative acceleration that is back-snapping brutal when Mr. Sulu engages Launch Control at the helm: BANG! Sprinting off the line, this heavyweight seems to defy physics.

Porsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo

Shortcuts to on-screen functions are touch-sensitive points at leading edge of center console. Rectangular control panels in the center console sit on gimbals, each corner activating a function. Haptic feedback is excellent.

Highly profitable, Porsche is far removed from its make-or-break days of the 996 and first Boxster 20 years ago, when funding two all-new ground-up cars meant skimping on interior materials. Contemporary Porsche interior are sorted, the very best human factors combined with clean, deliberate forms finished in the high-quality materials of a top-spec German luxury car. Porsche interior principles are applied across all models—strong, simple forms that speak to deliberate performance and not luxury. It’s a Porsche, not a BMW or Mercedes where artfulness is more pronounced. Time spent in an Anglo-German Rolls Phantom VIII encourages daydreams about its front seats placed on casters in the library, a perfect spot for a day’s end tumbler of scotch, ultimate luxury. Panamera has classical German sports car seats drawn from the well of more than 60 years of sports car racing: pronounced bolsters, ample under-thigh support to keep hips and lower spine well anchored, a comfortable place for driving quickly in long stints.

Porsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo

Turismo Turbo Hybrid has the mid-range 14-speaker Bose audio as standard, with 14 amplifier channels and a total output of 710 watts. The Burmester 1455-watt 20-speaker system is available. I’ve experienced the Burmester, an outstanding factory system.

Panamera’s exceptional communications system is centerpiece and remains one of my favorites for its clarity of thought. Driven by a powerful chip, the 12.3-in central screen is free of blaring graphics one finds in mainstream cars. Turismo Turbo Hybrid’s screen has a depthless black background with crisp, large type. Widget “tiles” can be flicked across the screen to remove preset stations and channels. One can drill through intuitive menus onscreen, or use the touch-sensitive shortcuts at the top of the center console. The black center console includes two big toggling plates related to heating and cooling; they’re mounted on a gimbal, each corner offering a form of control, with informative haptics. Within a week, it all becomes second- nature. Front and center is a thumb scroll that can rapidly raise or lower volume.

Porsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo

12.3-in. central screen and touch-sensitive controls rate among the best in the industry.

A friend who regularly tours the western U.S. with his beloved in another Swabian product, a V8 Mercedes S-class convertible, concluded this Grosser Porsche is so plush in the Sport setting that it can serve with style as a long-distance touring car. Hard not to love a 5126-lb. 4-door that can match a Lamborghini Huracán or Porsche GT3 for sheer acceleration off the line yet can cruise placidly for hours on rural highways stretching from California to Montana and Canada. Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo is a pinnacle achievement.

Source: Porsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo