The most powerful of Porsche’s bizarrely-named line-up is this: The Porsche Taycan Turbo S. Currently the most expensive EV in Australia, the Porsche Taycan Turbo S offers 560kW from two motors, and a combined 1,050Nm of torque.
To understand the exact performance difference between the three Taycan trims on offer, you must look beneath the skin. There are significant hardware differences, and the gains aren’t just buried in software configurations.
The entry-level Taycan 4S features a smaller 79kWh battery, while the rear motor is less potent, giving a combined output of 390kWh. The Taycan Turbo features an upgraded 93kWh battery, as well as a beefier rear motor, combining to deliver 500kW.
The Taycan Turbo S features the same battery and motors as the Taycan Turbo, but adds a higher-rated inverter to the front motor. In practice, this allows the front motor to draw more energy from the battery but does impact consumption in the process.
Also unique to the Turbo S is Launch Control, with a special “Overboost” function. Like in a traditional Turbo Porsche, such as the 718, Overboost allows the electric motor’s output to be temporarily raised for a couple of seconds. Combine that with launch control, and you get rapid, Tesla-matching acceleration. Porsche claim it’ll do the 0-100km.h sprint in 2.8 seconds, but independent tests have shown it can be quicker still.
Porsche also likes to highlight that this launch process is “repeatable.” What that means is, whereas other high-performance EVs are good for one or two neck-snapping runs before having to cool off, the Taycan is perfectly fine with delivering consistent, repeated hard launches.
The Taycan is one of the first EVs to sport a transmission with multiple speeds. The two-speed gearbox allows for rapid acceleration when in Sport or Sport Plus mode, and provides some compromise when it boils down to consumption.
But, consumption is conspicuously heavier than may be ideal in the Turbo S — more so than the 4S and Turbo. The claimed range of the Taycan is 405kms, but real-world range will see it cover 385kms. This isn’t especially good when you consider the Tesla Model S Performance knocks on the door of 500km.
The Taycan does offer a three-year free subscription to the ChargeFox network. Also, included in the drive away price is a wall charger and home energy manager. And with the right fast charger, you’ll be able to top up the Taycan’s juice in anywhere from 15-20 minutes.
However, at $364,000 drive away, all of the above will be irrelevant to the vast population of EV adopters. The Turbo S packs some incredible tech and delivers it in an incredibly-polished package that feels distinctly Porsche — a great thing if you’re a soon-to-be-converted petrol head.
But the price point is nowhere near what it needs to be to take Tesla head-on. Perhaps it doesn’t need to be though. The Taycan Turbo S is catering to a very different, and far more exclusive market. The rest of us will have to wait for the trickle-down effect to kick in.