Many expectations were raised in the build-up to the launch of Porsche's electric Taycan vehicle. After our first drive a few weeks ago, it was clear that Taycan Turbo and Turbo S are profoundly capable cars – primarily Porsches, which are only electric. And because they were Porsches, they weren't exactly cheap: the Taycan Turbo starts at $ 150,900 and the Turbo S starts at $ 185,000. On Monday morning, Porsche filled in what many of us were expecting with news that the next Taycan variant, called the Taycan 4S, will arrive in the spring of 2020. And this one is much cheaper – at least by Porsche standards.
Like the more expensive versions, the Taycan 4S has a four-wheel drive setup with permanent synchronous magnetic motors driving each shaft. The rear engine still gets a two-speed gearbox, and like the Taycan Turbo, it uses a 300V inverter for the front engine and 600V rear. The main differences are the battery and the power outlet. The Taycan 4S has two battery and engine options: a one-layer 79 kWh battery and 390 kW (552 hp) total power, which costs $ 103,800; or the same twin-layer 93 kWh battery from Turbo and Turbo S, which has a total output of 420 kW (563 hp), which will cost $ 110,380. (All rates are before tax credit of $ 7,500 IRS or local incentives.) The range for both versions of Taycan 4S is not yet calculated by EPA.
The single-layer battery also charges at slightly reduced speed, maximizing out by 225 kW compared to 270 kW for dual-layer 93 kWh package. As long as the battery is preheated and the charging state is below 20 percent, both packs should reach 80 percent after 22.5 minutes connected to an 800V DC quick charger. Porsche says all Taycan 4S buyers will get a 30-minute charge from Electrify America quick chargers for free for three years, as well as free quick charge at Porsche dealers around the country. Like Audi, Porsche has partnered with Amazon to make the process of getting a home charger installed as painless as possible.
With a much cheaper price tag, it is possible to see the Taycan 4S as a more direct competitor to the Tesla Model S, though that car will almost certainly outperform a Taycan 4S in terms of reach, acceleration and handling. The prices are in line with what Porsche charges for the Panamera 4 E-Hybrid – although, as we found out in our drive last month, the experience of driving a Taycan is as different from driving a Panamera as from driving a Tesla .
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