The Porsche Macan sure has sales numbers that soar as high as the second look it attracts as it zooms by with the body of an SUV and the swagger of a sports sedan. The all-new 2019 Porsche Macan is set to make its own records, thanks to renewed touches to its design and specifications that make it more lithe and better looking. It’s hardly surprising that Porsche has given some necessary cuts and additions to the design of the previous rendition, and it’s a pretty welcome sight. As we delve into what makes this 7-speed
PDK transmission-driven machine such a good seller among Porsche aspirants, there are several comparative parallels that we will draw with the current version.
The most visible change in the front — other than the standard LED headlights — is the completely redesigned front air intakes. The grille is now sportier and the bumper looks a lot meatier. The four-point headlamps may not be everyone’s favourite design element but they’re surely effective in getting their job done.
Whatever those splitters are, they also seem to catch the eye and fit in organically with the car’s handsome front. At the back, the all-new tail lamps steal the show. The new three-dimensional LED lights stretch across the rear as a strip and cover the width of the car. This makes the Macan feel more at home, in the company of the Cayenne and the Panamera. The lights aren’t all. The new tailpipe setup with round outlets seems to be something that will catch on in the renditions to come.
The 2019 Macan sports 21-inch wheels with some cool new trims that add to the sporty quotient. The colour options available include Mamba Green Metallic, Dolomite Silver Metallic, Miami Blue and Chalk, which are a handful to pick from.
The interiors have a few yays and nays. The 7-inch infotainment system sees itself out to make room for a new 11-inch touchscreen, which is a welcome change. Thankfully, the screen now sits atop the air-vents, making it more accessible. Those familiar with the Cayenne and Panamera will have no problem in dealing with the system, which can be fully customised to one’s preferences. If you choose the Sport Chrono option, then in the middle of the dash you’ll find a stopwatch that just sits there.
I especially loved the voice activation feature, which helps drivers keep their eyes on the road rather than meddle around with controls. The Here Cloud connectivity offers swarm-based traffic data so that you can make more informed, real-time decision on the go. Love off-roading? The Offroad Precision app will be something you can depend on. For Indian city roads, I’d recommend the Macan with its Traffic Jam Assist system that makes cruising more convenient in bumper-to-bumper traffic. This interesting Porsche feature helps ease the challenge of driving on crowded roads. The system is intelligent enough to track road signs and detects other vehicles on the road to assist the driver in making assisted decisions, thereby reducing stress levels. The car’s intuition extends to the Porsche Connect app that leverages Google’s Search feature to identify and predict risky terrain, including accidents and fog.
You can also opt for the smaller GT Sport steering wheel, which just fits right between your hands and enhances the sportiness of the drive.
Inspite of the upgrades in the cabin, there are far too many buttons cluttered towards the centre console. We do miss the sleek glass based centre console with tough sensitive buttons from the Panamera.
The ioniser and heated windscreen come as welcome additions to the package. Porsche, as usual, once again graces you with several options for upholstery, which include leather and carbon-fibre pickings.
The 2.0 litre turbocharged V4 petrol engine of the 2019 Macan delivers 250 horsepower with 273 pound feet of torque. Paired with Porsche's ultra smooth 7-speed dual clutch PDK transmission the four wheel drive has a top speed of 220 kmph. This isn’t a lot to brag about, especially coming from the house of Porsche. (But here’s what we have with us.) In terms of acceleration, a stationary to hundred kmph jump in 6.7 seconds seems like a modest effort. One may view these trimmings of top speed and engine power as a compromise but what comes with it are the other subtle additions that Porsche has rather laboriously infused into the car’s design and aesthetic. Does it suffice? Maybe it is what each independent driver will have to call out on their own.
Like any other member of the Porsche family, the true pleasure that the Macan delivers is in its driving. With stability and comfort as its priority, the improved chassis offers a more neutral response. Add to that the PTM all-wheel drive and better lateral dynamics made possible with the improved tyres. The new twin-scroll turbocharger provides high torque in the low engine speed range while enhancing responsiveness.
Porsche’s dual-clutch transmission system helps expand the engine to its full potential. You can flit between the Sport Mode and the Comfort Mode, where the former facilitates quick gear changes, while the latter effectively deals with the higher gear changes. But that isn’t all! The Comfort mode is ideal for long-distance drives and city traffic where ease of driving and comfort is critical. The Sport Mode is where the fun begins. The engine heaves a delightful grunt and the suspension wakes up to deliver a driving experience that is simply delightful. The front wheels move to the tune of your instinct and the brakes accompany your every decision without much protest. If you’re running on a few litres, then the Coasting Mode helps moderate the fuel consumption rather effectively. In this mode, the Auto Start Stop feature kicks in to switch off the engine rather than let it idle, during a stop.
Driving the Macan may look like you’re taking an SUV for a spin, but on the inside, it gets as sporty as you can imagine. And Porsche has done a fine job to make this possible. They’ve replaced the front steel components with aluminium ones, thus reducing the mass significantly. With spring forks made of lighter alloys, the steering is more obedient, and the suspension feels comfortable. There’s no good control without an efficient braking system, and that’s just what the 2019 Macan brings to the fore. Right from the pedal – which is made of moulded glass fibre-reinforced thermoplastic – to the disc diameter, which is increased by 10mm from its predecessor, the copper-free braking system makes control a breeze, even in treacherous environments.
Among the many things that a head-turner like the Macan can promise is the sheer joy of driving and that, above all else, would make many a bucket lists for the discerning Indian motorist, who’s always balancing style and performance.
Engine 2.0-litre four-cylinder inline engine with turbocharger
Power 245php @ 5000-6750 RPM
Torque 370nm @ 1600-4500 RPM
Transmission Seven-speed Porsche
dual-clutch transmission (PDK) 0-100kmph 6.7 sec
Top speed 225 kmph
City fuel efficiency 9 kmpl
Highway fuel efficiency 14 kmpl
Safety (PSM) with ABS, ASR, ABD, EDTC and Trailer Stability Management
Price (ex-showroom) Rs 90 lakh (estimated)