The Porsche Taycan electric sedan will get a bigger sibling come 2023, with the arrival of the Macan electric SUV. After initial testing on the proving grounds of the Porsche Development Centre in Weissach, the well-camouflaged next-generation prototypes of the compact SUV are now heading outside Porsche premises for the first time.
Built on an all-new electric platform, the electric Macan will offer typical Porsche E-Performance with 800-volt architecture but will come with significantly more range. If the Taycan was the ingenue of the all-electric sportscar world, will the Macan be the star? With ambitions to be the sportiest model in the segment, the all-electric Macan is ready for the road.
This will be the publics first glimpse of the Macan, as for the last four years much of the early phases of development are now done digitally and do not require real-life testing. This not only saves time and costs, it also preserves resources and, in turn, enhances sustainability. Instead of real vehicles, the engineers use digital prototypes – computational models that replicate the properties, systems and power units of a vehicle for a high degree of accuracy. For example, using what is known as a seat box to recreate the driver’s environment, the display and operating concept can be brought to life in an early development phase in conjunction with the digital prototype. This allows all interaction between driver and vehicle to be studied down to the last detail, enabling selective optimization even before the first physical cockpit has been built.
Testing in a real-life environment is now underway, which remains one of the most important milestones in the development process. Testing in controlled, closed facilities and public roads in real-life conditions is still indispensable to ensure that the vehicle structure, operational stability and reliability of hardware, software and all functions meet Porsche’s high-quality standards.
The all-electric Macan will have covered some three million gruelling test kilometres worldwide before it is launched onto the market in 2023 alongside an updated combustion engine Macan. There are no immediate plans to exclusively electrify the Macan lineup. Rather the electric Macan is intended to complement its internal combustion engine counterpart. Until then, however, it has millions of test kilometres to cover – both real and virtually.
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