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http://www.planet-9.com/gallery/files/3/macan13_thumb.jpgI have a confession to make, I didn’t want to like the Macan, but I do. Maybe I thought Porsche didn’t need a small SUV, or that Porsche should stick to sports cars and develop a GT3-like version of the Cayman, or maybe it was because I had purchased a small SUV 18 months ago and wasn’t happy that the Macan wasn’t available back then. Whatever the reason was, I just didn’t seem to have much interest in the Macan. I watched the debut with only mild interest and didn’t even pay that close of attention to the specs. So when my local Porsche dealer – Aristocrat Motors – sent out Macan launch event invitations I think mine ended up in the round file. Although I took time out last night to in fact attend the event, it wasn’t the launch party that sold me on the Macan, no it was something else entirely.

About a week ago I stopped by Aristocrat to check on the date for the launch as I knew it was coming up and I suspected that my invitation was now in a recycling bin somewhere. While I was there with my 7 year old daughter in tow, I ran into Rich the sales manager who offered me the keys to their Macan S launch car. At first I wasn’t that keen on taking the keys because my daughter had a hair appointment to get to and besides I didn’t really need an SUV, mine was less than 2 years old. Curiosity, however, is always a strong motivator, that and a 7 year old tugging at your side wanting to go for a ride. What father doesn’t want to please his little girl? So off we went… http://www.planet-9.com/gallery/files/3/macan1_thumb.jpg
If you think back to some of the early press videos from Europe describing the Macan and how it performed, you might remember the glowing praise heaped on the vehicle by members of the automotive press. There were shoot outs with the Range Rover Evoque and on-track test drives and they almost always came to the conclusion that the Macan was somehow more than a hopped up Audi Q5 with which it shares the same platform developed jointly under the VW group umbrella. Quite frankly I hadn’t heard this kind of praise heaped on a new Porsche since the initial Cayman launch, so I’m sure part of me wanted to believe that there was no way the Macan could be as good as a Cayman. For the most part I discounted these reviews, and for the most part I was completely wrong to do so.

I think my first surprise when firing up the new Macan S was that the Macan S has a twin turbo engine. (Remember I didn’t pay much attention at launch time) Somehow that seems confusing to me and in fact if you visit the Porsche website and look at the specs it simply lists a V6 3.0 liter engine, no mention of the twin turbos. If the Macan S is a twin turbo then is the Macan Turbo a quad turbo? No, and while a quad turbo might be cool, actually it might be rather hot, the Macan Turbo has a larger displacement engine with higher compression to make another 60HP over the Macan S. (400 vs. 340) Well that was a pleasant surprise and while I did not drive the Macan Turbo, I never once felt like the Macan S was lacking for power, in fact just the opposite, there was plenty of power on tap to get me into trouble and reach triple digits quickly if I wasn’t careful.

Porsche has traditionally never been about pure horsepower or large hp number bragging rights but rather about the total package including handling and braking. After a brief stint on the highway we exited to where I knew some twisty side streets awaited. The Macan did not disappoint, braking was firm and progressive and the handling sublime. It is as if Porsche took a 911 and made it larger. That’s the best analogy I can give you. It’s as if the engineers at Porsche took some of the secret sauce from the 911 development and baked it into the Macan but ended up with a larger vehicle to show for it. Ok, I’m not usually this easily impressed on a first test drive, so it was time for a second opinion.

http://www.planet-9.com/gallery/files/3/macan8_thumb.jpg I stopped by to visit one of my neighbors who is an automotive guy and has driven just about everything and owned more cars than I can count. We will call him Bob. Bob climbed behind the wheel while I rode shotgun. I didn’t say much as I didn’t want to influence his opinion. I simply told him that I’d picked the car up at the dealership and was taking it out for a spin and I thought he might like a turn behind the wheel. Keeping in mind that we had a 7 year old in the back, Bob still put the Macan S through its paces, testing a variety of modes (this launch vehicle was pretty well loaded) like sport and sport plus. When we arrived back at Bob’s house his assessment was in agreement with mine, that the Macan S was something special and would run circles around other small SUVs. Then Bob’s wife came out of the house and looked over the Macan and decided that she might want one, it was time for Bob to search his pockets so we left and headed back to the dealership. On our way back I took a portion of the highway that is typically bumpy and noisy due to recent patch work that was done after the winter. The Macan S again did not disappoint, not only did it soak up the bumps without jarring my daughter, but it remained one of the quietest cars I’ve ever ridden in, in fact I would place the Macan second behind the Tesla S sedan that I drove in terms of the interior being extremely quiet.

The test drive was not without a few shortcomings as the Macan S is not a perfect vehicle. I noticed that on more than one occasion the blind spot detection and display in the side mirror LEDs did not seem to work. I don’t know if it was the speed, or angle of the sun or what, but sometimes they lit up and sometimes they didn’t. Speaking of the sun, my other big gripe was that the aluminum trim ring around the PDK shifter console blinded me more than once by reflecting the sun directly into my eyes. I would advise would be Macan buyers to think about getting this in some other material as the angled aluminum piece will eventually put the sun in your eyes. Last, but not least, the Macan S is rated at 17 city and 23 highway for gas mileage which is really nothing special and ranks below the leaders in the small SUV category. Will this make much difference to Porsche owners? Maybe not, but Porsche does spend a good deal of marketing all of the whizz bang gas sipping features like auto stop-start and sailing mode. It makes one wonder what the mileage would be like without these features. Despite these shortcomings, I would still recommend the Macan S to anyone in the market for a smaller SUV. http://www.planet-9.com/gallery/files/3/macan4_thumb.jpg

I reluctantly gave the keys back to Rich and thanked him for the test drive and gave him some of my initial feedback. It seems they’ve been getting a lot of good feedback from those who have test driven the Macan. At the launch party last night I did my best to answer questions from others in attendance who wanted to know how the Macan drove, I might have even made a few sales. I tend to be a practical person, as much as any Porsche owner can be, so I had to evaluate whether or not this $64K SUV is twice as good as the $32K SUV I purchased 18 months ago. It’s hard to quantify and say that it is “twice” as good, but the Macan was certainly better in nearly every regard, better acceleration, better braking, better handling, etc. I can say that if I were in the market for a new SUV that the Macan would immediately be on my short list for consideration. If you were like me and disregarding the Macan all I can say is take one for a test drive, you just might change your mind.


More photos from the event:












My Date:



Here is that blinding aluminum trip strip:



Look I found a white Cayman with white interior!

 

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As a CUV, the more appropriate question might be twice as better in snow, gravel, or other soft roading?

There are apparent teething problems with things like rear view cameras not in focus and the alarm constantly going off but with a new car, bugs will happen, no big deal.

Regardless of what anyone thinks, they will sell a ton of these. Many, many.

Many, Many, Many :)
 

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Discussion Starter #3
As a CUV, the more appropriate question might be twice as better in snow, gravel, or other soft roading?

There are apparent teething problems with things like rear view cameras not in focus and the alarm constantly going off but with a new car, bugs will happen, no big deal.

Regardless of what anyone thinks, they will sell a ton of these. Many, many.

Many, Many, Many :)

Page 40 of the Macan Brochure found here: Macan Brochure - Downloads - Planet-9

Talks about the full time active AWD system and its capabilities which I have to believe are as good or better than anything else on the market. Twice as good? Hard to say...
 

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I have yet to drive a Macan myself, but did also recently attend an intro party. My wife and I have no need for such a vehicle (no kids, no big pets, and we just don't go camping much anymore...), but after sitting in the Macan I felt the size is just right, the materials were obviously very nice, and the thing is just plain attractive!

As has been mentioned already, I'm sure Porsche will sell plenty - and for good reason. Maybe increased profits will mean the Cayman GT-4 comes along that much sooner. Bring it on!!!
 

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It has an AWD? That would explain the so-so mileage. Most "small" SUVs usually have FWD, I'd think.

Another thing... I detest how Porsche pushing into people's mind that Macan is "small". It's not. it's the same size (and wider) as FX35, and lexus SUVs of couple years back.

There is just shift in the industry going on when most SUVs grow so humongous that it allows manufacturers to introduce another normal-sized SUVs and call them "small". I really think cars should be getting smaller. Not bigger, with confusing PR play masking the fact...

All that said, I'm looking at Macan myself. Just wish it was really SMALLER, and with better gas mileage.
 

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in europe there's also the Macan S Diesel, it offers less performances but of course a better gas mileage. 250 hp only...
It will be the best selling model in italy for sure.
And compared to the cayenne it's really "small"! Ok it's as big as an audi q5, as it's based on the same platform, so it's not a "compact" suv. But i don't think the market is ready for an even smaller suv from Porsche. The Macan rear space in my opinion is already at the lower limit for a luxury car, going down to the Q3 size would bring porsche out of its world.
I tested the Turbo and really liked it, ok the overall dimensions are not small but you can drive it like a compact car. Agile, pretty comfortable, and with a "rich" engine, it doesn't surprise for top end power but for the torque.

pictures of the launch event at my dealer here https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.460339910736103.1073741855.203532143083549&type=3
They decided to go soft, the macan simply appeared smashing a styrofoam wall during the presentation video :hilarious:
 

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I don't see the appeal of a small SUV with literally no space in the back seat and so so gas mileage for $60K. Porsche could bring back pet rocks, and people will buy them.
 

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I don't see the appeal of a small SUV with literally no space in the back seat and so so gas mileage for $60K. Porsche could bring back pet rocks, and people will buy them.
CUV, not SUV. I imagine the people buying the first 50,000/year don't see the appeal for vehicles with NO back seat, can't be driven well on gravel or snow, can't haul lumber or 30 bags of mulch, no place for kids, and cost $75K. Yet, have no need for a huge, full size SUV.

And imagine, 0 - 60 times exactly the same as a 981S. I can't see why anyone would want to buy one.

All life is a two way street. :eek:
 

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Discussion Starter #10
She looks a lot more grown up than 7!

Sent from my HTC6525LVW using Tapatalk
Two different events, the drive with my daughter was the weekend before the launch event. The launch event I attended with the woman I am dating, and yes she is older than 7 :)
 

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CUV, not SUV. I imagine the people buying the first 50,000/year don't see the appeal for vehicles with NO back seat, can't be driven well on gravel or snow, can't haul lumber or 30 bags of mulch, no place for kids, and cost $75K. Yet, have no need for a huge, full size SUV.

And imagine, 0 - 60 times exactly the same as a 981S. I can't see why anyone would want to buy one.

All life is a two way street. :eek:
CUV, SAV, they are all SUV's to me, whatever you want to call it. A maltese and a german shepherd are both dogs, one is small and the other is big. Doesn't matter if they are build on a car platform, if it looks like an SUV then it is an SUV. We're all different, I honestly don't see the appeal, even if it goes 0-60 in one second. But what do I know, Porsche can't make them fast enough.
 

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CUV, SAV, they are all SUV's to me, whatever you want to call it. A maltese and a german shepherd are both dogs, one is small and the other is big. Doesn't matter if they are build on a car platform, if it looks like an SUV then it is an SUV. We're all different, I honestly don't see the appeal, even if it goes 0-60 in one second. But what do I know, Porsche can't make them fast enough.
Good points.

If it looks like a car, and smells like a car, and drives like a car, I guess its a car ;)

Some years ago, I once saw up close a Ferrari 250 GTO. At the time it was only worth about $1M. Stunningly beautiful and the sound of that V12 was just awesome. That was back in the day when $1M was really worth $1M. Since I knew what it was worth, I was a bit afraid to go near it but the owner didn't mind. He brought it to a German auto event for people to see and hear.

At the same time they were selling the Fiat X1/9. Both two seat sports cars. All those two seat sports cars all look like, especially when they are tiny red Italian two seat sports cars. :) Can't do much with them. Can't take two passengers. Can't haul home a new lawn mower, etc. GTO is now worth $53M. Fiat? Probably in the junkyard.


Yup, to each their own :)

They will sell every Macan they can build and attract an entirely new set of owners, all of which is good thing for everyone. I hope they are very successful and you see Macan on every block. Everyone should have the opportunity to own a Porsche of some kind if possible.
 

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CUV, not SUV. I imagine the people buying the first 50,000/year don't see the appeal for vehicles with NO back seat, can't be driven well on gravel or snow, can't haul lumber or 30 bags of mulch, no place for kids, and cost $75K. Yet, have no need for a huge, full size SUV.

And imagine, 0 - 60 times exactly the same as a 981S. I can't see why anyone would want to buy one.

All life is a two way street. :eek:
My local dealer just had their Macan launch event which was very well attended. They have one Macan, which is not for sale and which is being limited to brief test drives because they've had so many inquiries about it. One of the SA's tried to get me interested but I told him that it fills no niche for me, and he replied that actually it's most popular with empty nesters who don't have to carry kids around but who need something a little more functional than a sports car and still want something sporty.

I don't think this is an SUV either. To me, SUV means 4WD and capable on all kinds of road conditions, big enough to haul/tow a lot of junk, and the thing I'd want to pull out of the garage when the zombie apocalypse finally happens.
 

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Great short review.

Here in Brunei, the Macan will be released next month and its already parked in the showroom, hiding under a huge drape.

All the models that's arrived here have been booked and paid for i believe and the waiting list is quite long. Here, the number of Porsche cars brought in are limited due to the demographics and population of the country.

Usually, a Porsche 911 , Boxster or Cayman stays in the showroom for up to 3-6 months before it's bought. Even a Cayenne and a Panamera takes a month or two before it's moved out for new buyers.

It's almost unheard of for here for a Porsche to already be sold out before the launch date.

The wife and i have a nearly 3yr old BMW X3 2.0 TurboDiesel to haul our 3 small children for school runs and activities and i must say, i am pretty tempted to change SUVs should the test-drive be better than amazing.
 

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My local dealer just had their Macan launch event which was very well attended. They have one Macan, which is not for sale and which is being limited to brief test drives because they've had so many inquiries about it. One of the SA's tried to get me interested but I told him that it fills no niche for me, and he replied that actually it's most popular with empty nesters who don't have to carry kids around but who need something a little more functional than a sports car and still want something sporty.

I don't think this is an SUV either. To me, SUV means 4WD and capable on all kinds of road conditions, big enough to haul/tow a lot of junk, and the thing I'd want to pull out of the garage when the zombie apocalypse finally happens.
Yes, there is a difference between SUV and CUV, just like you explained. These are CUVs meant for softroading, gravel and snow. Not a real 4 x 4 like a Cayenne.

I believe the marketing niches is exactly like you describe, although not just empty nesters but any couple who need to carry things like lawn mowers and mulch. That said, I am also sure there are many, many sold to 30 somethings, young children, coming from their first BMW, Audi, or Lexus, and want to get into a Porsche. I am sure there is a big market for both sectors.

The only problem I see with it is that if you already have a Porsche sports car, I am not seeing the need to drop significant money on a CUV when there are other vehicles just, or more capable, for soft roading. If you have the need for speed, hop into the sports car.

OTH, if you are an empty nester, with no other vehicle, I can see it has a place.
 

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I have a wonderfully appointed 981S, first Porsche, dream car, and not my DD. I liked my DD 2012 Evoque until I bought my first Porsche. I need a car to haul things and my CS is a garaged car for weekends. When I first saw the Macan I thought it was quite ordinary looking and the Evoque had more style. I obsessed as usual for a few weeks and finally stopped at the dealership thinking I might walk away with an S. Drove the S and liked it ok but thought my fully loaded Evoque which went in excess of 65K was fine and I'd take a bit hit selling it and buying the S. The sales guy told me to drive the Turbo just for the hell of it, I had decided that I definitely did not need a Turbo after buying my CS last year.

Long story short I walked out with signed papers for a well appointed Turbo (Oct delivery in Stuttgart). I am going to take a big bath on my Evoque but you only live once. I am excited that I will have two Porsches and I believe I will not feel "shorted" driving the SUV over the CS. Different cars but both spectacular IMO.

Porsches just do it for me at this point in my life. I've had the last 4 generations of M-3's and don't even think of beemers anymore. I am a convert!
 
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Suburbans are now almost $70k which makes the Macan a steal for soccer moms everywhere!
 

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The Macan makes me feel sad and confused.

Sad because the Macan's performance shows just how cynically Porshe has starved my CS of power.

Confused because I don't see the point of SUVs. Like my neighbors, I have no need whatever to go offroad and it snows twice a year round here. You can get as much junk or as many dogs in a 320 Touring. And scrubbing off 4 tyres pushing a two ton brick round the lanes seems a perverse waste.

...and yet, and yet I really like the idea of owning a Macan.
 
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