BEHIND THE WHEEL: Porsche Macan
TUESDAY APRIL 28, 2015
For a start, I lost interest in the Porsche Macan immediately after the estimated price of one was released. Its commanding premium of a hundred thousand over an Audi Q5 is just absurd so I couldn’t care less for its launch event.
My curiosity began to stir when Macans were seen everywhere hence I had to find out. Sure the Macan S is the pick of the range as it strikes a balance in price and performance. Then again a price of one, you could also pick yourself up a used 991. Used but nonetheless, a Carrera.
Superior hardware calibration
Ecstasy of customisation
Upright rear seats
0-100 km/h: 6.9s
Top speed: 223km/h
From RM 425,000
I specifically requested for a base Macan and one showed up on Sunday morning. To my surprise, I was presented a blue car optioned with distastefully large 21-inch rims painted in gloss black.
" Is this the most expensive 2-litre car on this side of the world? "
Things got better when I climbed aboard, greeted by familiar Porsche instruments with brown partial leather combination. That particular Macan was preconfigured to save 12 or so thousand on a full leather upholstery which doesn't make much sense for a car that’s half a million ringgit. Having saved on leather, the intelligent person who did the configuration splurged on 18-way adjustment seats. It also has air suspension, a stopwatch, PCM, Bose audio (just get a Burmester unit), sunroof, a reverse camera (good for pixel counting) and that’s as many toys you get for 70 thousand.
The person who decided on this configuration also suffers from inferiority complex disorder for having most money on huge wheels along with a giant sunroof in a country that has summer all year.
I was rather eager to get into it to take shelter before neighbours start spitting with little help from its ostentatious exterior. Distastefulness aside, an Audi engine that lives under its hood has huge shoes to fill since a Porsche badge has been stuck onto it. First and foremost, lag is minimal but lateral acceleration is very much like a Q5’s so as the noises it makes. Just like a Q5, the Macan went lethargic past 120 km/h and will take forever to go near its top speed. Exhaust noise? A little on upshifts very much like in a VW Golf. At this point, I can’t help but to think the Macan is glorified Q5 with Porsche garnish.
Thankfully when it was shown some corners, Porsche magic could really be seen as their engineers have gotten the Macan’s steering, suspension and transmission absolutely spot on! What's beyond me is the ride quality these suspensions provide in conjuncture with large 21-inch rims.
As a whole, it really does look like a quality product so long many boxes are ticked. Also, the Macan looks distinctively different from the Cayenne by Porsche standards. It’s just a shame you need another 130 thousand for the S model, the one you actually want. Another thing to take note of is unlike the Cayenne, Macan’s rear seats do not recline and are a touch upright which is something I care for.
" The Macan is every bit more talented than a Q5
that's begging for more power "
To sum things up, the Macan S and Turbo is a side project to the Cayenne that they already own. Leaving the base car to those who are desperate for a Porsche. If you were to get the entry Macan, try avoiding unnecessary garnish, stick to steel suspensions and standard wheels.
As they say, there is no downside to being rich but be careful on how you mix and match your next spare car should you not wish to find it covered in phlegm.