5 Things You Didn’t Know About the Electric Porsche Taycan

From “foot garages” to Tesla-beating power, here’s what to know before it hits dealers

Porsche Taycan Electric Vehicle World Tour
The Porsche Taycan EV prototype testing on the streets of Shanghai, China this week.
Porsche AG

The time has come. The Porsche Taycan officially made its public debut. Well, it was slightly camouflaged, and technically still a prototype, and sure, it was in China, not the U.S. All that aside, the first all-electric Porsche sports car is officially on the fast track to a garage near you.

The public premiere of the Taycan (pronounced “tie-con”), on July 1st in Shanghai, was the beginning of a world tour for the EV. Porsche is calling it the Taycan Triple Demo Run, and as the name suggests it’s much more than a photo op.

In China, the car took demo laps on the track at a Porsche Experience Center. Next, the car will run the Hill Climb at the Goodwood Festival of Speed in England from July 4th-7th. Lastly, it’ll make the rounds at the ABB FIA Formula E Championship from July 13th-14th in Brooklyn, New York. (If you’re on the West Coast, you might just be able to catch one, too.)

But even as Porsche is keeping mum on the full details and finalized design before the official world premiere in September, publicly displaying one of the most anticipated cars of the year (OK, century) is a dream scenario for car blogs. They’ve been dying to snoop and Porsche is giving them the green light, which means new details are coming out every day. 

We’ve known the basic estimated specs for a while, and they’re impressive: around 600 horsepower, a 0-62 MPH time under 3.5 seconds and a top speed around 155 MPH (these are approximations because they’re conversions from metric). But when reading about cars, those numbers can blend together into a worthless blur of power.

The output of the two “permanently excited synchronous motors,” it should be said, is nothing to sneeze at. But as the Taycan begins its world tour, and before it officially hits the market at the end of the year, there’s much more to know and (potentially) love. 

Porsche Taycan EV Testing in Shanghai 2019
Porsche had a number of camouflage elements on the Taycan EV this week, from the tailpipes to the lights. (Porsche AG)

Here are five things we’ve recently learned that you probably didn’t know about the Porsche Taycan:

1. It has “foot garages”

Days before the Shanghai premiere, Porsche released an interview with their Head of Style Michael Mauer. It’s mostly standard marketing fare, but Jalopnik was quick to point out a brilliantly absurd detail: the car will have first-of-its-kind, never-before-seen, revolutionary … “foot garages.” Yes, that’s a direct quote. What Mauer’s talking about is that standard EVs sit higher thanks to the large batteries in the floor; Porsche wasn’t willing to give up the low center of gravity, even though it’s a four-door sedan, so they designed holes (aka “garages”) where the battery normally sits for the passengers in the backseat to rest their feet. In the wise words of Jalopnik: “If you ever find yourself in the backseat of a Porsche Taycan one day, rest easy knowing your feet are surrounded by chemical batteries just inches from the road rushing by below you.”

2. They were building 20,000. Now they’re building 40,000.

You’ve been able to register to buy a Taycan for a while now, and that registration requires a deposit. Initially, the marque planned to build 20,000 a year, but in March they confirmed that the list of prospective buyers that had paid a deposit exceeded that number and that they were ramping up production. (The news initially broke in January that production had doubled to 40,000.) If it sells that many, it will surpass the classic 911 sports car, which sold 35,573 models in 2018.

Premiere of the Porsche Taycan Electric Sports Car
This isn’t exactly what the Porsche Taycan will look like, but it’s pretty dang close. (Porsche AG)

3. It can fit four adults and all your luggage

The man behind German YouTube channel ThomasGeigerCar got to join Porsche engineers on a “final development drive” in the Taycan, and even got to film the inside. It’s also camouflaged, but in the video posted in mid-May, he hopped in the back seat and confirmed that you can fit four fully grown adults inside. Plus, since it’s an EV, the trunk and frunk (front trunk) are free and big enough to hold the luggage of all the passengers. Road trip!

4. It’s deliberately taking on the Tesla Model S

Don’t let the whole luggage capacity thing fool you. The reason Porsche’s tour stops include the track, Goodwood and Formula E is that they’re trying to make a point about performance — in other words, they’re trying to differentiate the Taycan from Tesla’s Model S. As the Tesla disciples and EV writers at Electrek point out, Porsche has said “that unlike Tesla’s performance vehicles, the Taycan is going to be able to maintain continuous higher power output for long periods of time.”

5. Like every Porsche, it will be very fun to drive

Our favorite detail isn’t a new design element sleuthed out or a performance leak from an engineer. It comes from a spy shot a reader submitted to The Drive. As they write, the official Porsche test driver is “seen leisurely driving on the 405 Freeway with the window down and their arm out.” Leisurely driving in traffic on the freeway in California? Hey, if the Taycan can accomplish that, I’m going to put a deposit down myself.

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