When Porsche decided to step into the SUV segment with the Cayenne, Porsche purists we’re all that happy, expecting the brand to soldier on with different 911 variants until times end. But, the Cayenne turned out to be a huge success, and the German brand decided to come out with a compact model named the Macan. Originally code named Cajun, the Macan hit the market in the spring of 2014 and became an immediate success, being one of Porsche’s most sold models. Be that as it may, the compact luxury segment is intense, so Porsche needs to keep things fresh until the next-gen model comes to be at the turn of the decade.
Now, we’re getting a first look at the facelifted model thanks to a new round of spy shots. There won’t be a whole lot of change on the table, but the headlights and taillights should get a new layout, and it looks like there’s a bigger chin spoiler up front. The interior is set for some minor nips and tucks as well, and the available engines could get some minor retuning to help keep things interesting.
DESIGN AND STYLE ;
From the front this is a typical Porsche. The headlamp cluster is inspired from the Porsche 918 Spider. With strong muscular lines on the bonnet the Macan looks intimidating. The grill is on the bumper with added scoops on the side with twin chrome strips. Below which are the LED DRL’s with the chrome cladding in the centre. This adds a rugged look but with a lot of class. From the sides the Macan looks like a shrunk down Cayenne. The design is rather simple. The wheel arches are big enough to support the large alloys and the red painted callipers for the turbo looks gorgeous.
Porsche has stuck to its more car like side profile that gives aggressive shoulder line to the Porsche Macan. Though you can add a fibre or carbon cladding for a bit sportier look. This adds elegance with tradition. The tri-line wrap around kidney shaped LED tail lamps are typical vintage Porsche with a lot of modern touch. The bumper is raised high with twin exhaust on each side making the count 4. These are encompassed by the same chrome cladding as in he front. The one thing that always gives me a negative vibe is the small rear windscreen. It is fine in sports cars but why in an SUV. It’s time Porsche makes the necessary changes.
CABIN AND COMFORT ;
Its interiors are made using superior grade material including leather upholstery, which gives a luxuriant look to the cabin. Although, it is known to be a sports car, it has a classy interior design, which is unusual for a vehicle in this segment. This model series gets Platinum Grey and Black color scheme, which is further emphasized by silver inserts. The cockpit section has a classy design dashboard with layered principle and is decorated with metallic accents. It is further equipped with aspects like a infotainment system, cooled glove box unit, an air conditioning system and a proficient analog clock. The front cabin also has individual sport seats, which have height and backrest adjustment facility. These well cushioned seats are covered with a good quality Alcantara leather upholstery that renders a plush appeal to the cabin. The most attractive aspect of the cabin is its 3-spoke steering wheel, which is covered with smooth-finish leather upholstery. Beside this, it is also decorated with a lot of aluminum accents and the iconic company’s badge that accentuates the cabin. On the other hand, there are several utility based features provided inside the cabin like storage compartment, dual front sun visors with vanity mirrors, three accessory power sockets, lockable glove compartment and integral headrests on seats.
At present, this model series is now available in three trim levels. However, all these trims have identical set of features, which makes the journey fascinating. The list of aspects include power windows with one-touch operation, electric luggage compartment lid release (front and rear), remote central locking, and windscreen washer system with aero wiper blades. This series also gets an advanced instrument cluster featuring a 4.6-inch color display along with three analog gauges. They provides informatics like engine speed, fuel levels, vehicle speed, outside temperature, tachometer, fuel consumption and several other such important notifications. Its cockpit section houses an advanced automatic air conditioning system featuring an integrated carbon fibre filter that helps to keeps the entire ambiance pleasant. Apart from these, this model series also have aspects like door sill guards with model specification, two individual cup holders, LED reading lights and electrically adjustable steering column. Apart from these, the car maker is offering several advanced features as optional like a heated steering wheel, cruise control system, fire extinguisher, interior surveillance, smoking package, light design package, preparation for Porsche vehicle tracking system and seat ventilation including heating function.
ENGINE AND GEARBOX ;
As mentioned, the Macan uses a 2.0-litre turbo-petrol unit. Before you write it off, know that the engine makes 252hp and 370Nm. The horsepower figure actually betters the S Diesel’s 245hp, though the diesel’s 580Nm is way higher. Still, the performance numbers are quite revealing.With launch control engaged, the Macan charges to 100kph from a standstill in a very satisfactory 6.6 seconds. Interestingly enough, that’s 0.1 seconds better than what we managed with the Macan S Diesel. In fact, acceleration up to 180kph and, in kick down, is near identical to the diesel version. It’s 110kg lighter than the diesel and that undoubtedly helps its case. Even away from the drag strip, the Macan feels quick and athletic. Flooring the throttle won’t result in neck-snapping acceleration, but that gentle push back into your seat happens. The Macan is quick to build speed, though the mid-range is where the action really begins. There on, the engine pulls all the way to 6500 rpm and beyond, with a sporty, if slightly muted, snarl giving a nice soundtrack. The 7-speed PDK dual-clutch and its quick shifts (manually actuated via the paddles or gear lever) are integral to the Macan’s brisk performance, but upshifts aren’t imperceptibly smooth at max attack.
It’s a good engine-gearbox package that manages to compliment the Macan’s outstanding handling. The quick turn-in, the precision of the steering, the balance of the set-up and even the way it brakes just elevates the Macan into a different league. The clever all-wheel-drive system (it can send up to 100 percent torque to either axle) ensures there’s always immense reserves of grip while the standard adjustable dampers do their bit to keep the Macan settled and composed at all times. Ride quality is also a highlight with suspension and high-profile 18-inch tyres easily absorbing most of what our roads can throw at them. What’s also impressive is that you won’t need to shy away from off-road tracks either. The stock tyres provide reasonable grip, the all-wheel-drive system supplies the requisite power and you can even raise ride height by 40mm to clear obstacles.
RIDE AND HANDLING ;
Quite simply, no other compact luxury SUV is more engaging and fun to drive as the 2017 Porsche Macan. Some may come close, but the degree of capability and driver connection is elevated to a degree that makes its Porsche badge represent more than just a fashion statement.No matter which engine you opt for, you’re going to get acceleration that either matches the class best or utterly blows it away. And while the Macan’s steering doesn’t communicate as well as what you get from a Porsche 911, it’s still better than the majority of cars on the road — let alone SUVs. The same could be said of the handling in general. Grip is plentiful, and the Macan changes direction with confidence and poise. It encourages the sort of driving you’d expect to experience in a sport sedan rather than an SUV. Note, however, that if you want the full effect and have room in the garage for a set of winter tires, we would highly recommend the summer tires for their added grip.Thankfully, this impressive handling capability doesn’t translate to a stiff-legged ride over bumps and ruts. Indeed, the Macan is quite comfortable and quiet over just about any road surface, something that cannot be said of other athletic SUVs. The optional 20-inch wheels don’t upset the ride enough that we would recommend avoiding them if you prefer the looks of a larger wheel.
SAFETY AND SECURITY ;
All Porsche Macan models come with six airbags, including head and side airbags for front passenger and driver, and curtain airbags that offer head protection to both front and rear occupants. They also have a tyre pressure-monitoring system, hill-hold assist (so you don’t roll backwards on a hill start), as well as the full range of electronic traction and stability aids.There’s also a system that senses if you’ve just had a collision but still moving, then automatically activates the brakes to hopefully stop you rolling into the path of another accident. Lane departure warning is standard while lane assist and blind spot monitoring are on the options list.Sadly, automatic emergency braking (AEB) isn’t. Some city cars get this important feature as standard, which can help prevent a front-end collision with cars, pedestrians and even large animals. The fact that it’s not even available on a premium SUV is unacceptable, and although when it was tested in 2012 the Macan received five stars from Euro NCAP, without this feature under today’s standards it wouldn’t have scored that high.
Porsche has brought in a vehicle that’s powerful, extremely aggressive and beautiful inside and outside. The power output is much and it can quite easily be termed as the sportscar with finest handling. The engineering has created a piece that will leave one at awe and the execution will tempt one to drive around a few blocks further. It is desirable with not much left for one’s imagination. However, the maintenance cost can be a little hefty but then again it’s Porsche and that is a small price to pay for the experience that the sportscar offers.