Drive Time – 2018 Porsche Macan
Who wouldn’t entertain cargo sensibility mated with Porsche sportiness?
When one notices the Porsche brand, immediate visions of quick, superb handling, engaging sound, and downright adrenaline driving enjoyment swirl in our minds. It’s a euphoric belief that their rides deliver on all sensational counts. And now with three four-door options, Porsche is no longer deemed all fun but light on practicality.
The latest model to arrive back in 2015 is the Porsche Macan Crossover (Macan is Indonesian for “Tiger”). It is the brand’s #1 seller due to its affordability and everyday utility combined with that famous Porsche performance allure.
The 2018 Macan tester (supplied by Park Place Porsche Grapevine) is the base model of the five available variations (S, GTS and Turbo and Turbo with Performance Package). Yet, it hardly feels like a bargain basement settling. It drives, feels and looks as a Porsche should. Starting at $47,800, the price is a terrific entry for those desiring the peerless badge’s offerings. I can honestly say the Macan is one crossover that drives like a sports car.
Let us count the ways a Macan separates itself from the crowded SUV/Crossover segment. Seriously, who wouldn’t entertain a cargo sensibility mated with Porsche sportiness? The car reviews justifiably love on it.
The Macan’s curvaceous body definitely possesses some Porsche DNA—especially with the brand’s unique four-point LED headlights and oblong taillights. The wide, flat hood is another familiar design characteristic. Cool black trim along the flanks of the white paint delivers just enough visual contrast.
Sight lines offer a fresh, appealing appearance from any angle and the rear includes dual chrome exhausts.
18” rims are standard, but I’d opt for 19 or 20’s as they fill the wheel wells better. The models add sportier accents as you move up the model ladder. Yet, there’s definitely a level to satisfy anyone’s desires in the Crossover category.
Porsche is synonymous with performance and the Macan delivers—as it should. A seven-speed transmission is coupled with the base’s spirited 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder with 252hp/273lb-ft torque and 0-60 in 6.3 seconds. You may think that wouldn’t provide enough oomph but c’mon, it’s a Porsche and thus feels much quicker, providing the feedback one expects including a decent sporty exhaust note in Sport Mode. The horsepower increases to 340, 360, 400 and 440 as you move up the Macan chain. Capable All-wheel-drive is standard on all models and performed admirably in rainy conditions. You can also monitor the torque ratios on front and rear axels in the dash. Combined with the stellar suspension, the Macan handles like a dream. Despite the sporting heritage, the Macan cruises admirably on long drives.
Braking is confident and a handy Auto Hold feature allows you to lift off the break during idling—a welcome benefit when stopping on a steep grade. You can opt to disengage the Auto-Stop feature. Sport Mode tightens the steering, suspension and extends the gear shifting. To me, it’s when the Porsche DNA really shines. Mileage is a decent 20/25. I observed 23mpg in spirited driving.
The Macan possesses Porsche’s unmistakably handsome upscale, sporty interior. Fit, finish and materials is top notch. Creature comforts abound in the cocoon and the scented cowhide leather appointments add to the allure. Soft-touch materials, attractive trim and a perfectly formed steering wheel (heated!) are excellent.
The seats are comfortable and supportive with the optional Premium Package’s 14-way adjustability. They’re heated and cooled too with their control buttons on the console without needing to run through several maddening menus on the info screen.
For a Crossover, headroom is very generous—even in the backseat—and plenty of elbowroom. Legroom is ample too with feet fitting comfortably underneath the front seats. Visibility is decent but typical for a Crossover. The rear view is mirror smallish as is the rear window, but ample side mirrors are excellent. An optional double-pane sunroof illuminates the cabin.
Instantly recognizable is Porsche’s customary left hand ignition key.
The console is chock full of handy buttons and a 7” infotainment touchscreen with a welcome matte finish to inhibit fingerprints. I especially appreciated the volume and tuner knobs to find your favorite stations and you can preset regardless of radio format.
Cargo room is good enough for full golf bags to fit diagonally. Of course more can go in with the 60/40 split rear seats folded down—enabling total cargo space of 53ft³. The button for the power trunk lid is camouflaged in the rear window wiper hinge, thus no hatch latch is necessary.
Blind spot warnings are a surprising option on the base model. I’d at least get the surround view camera—it’s a great assistant when negotiating tight spaces.
Audio availability in the base Macan is a terrific 14-speaker Bose Surround System providing plenty of punch. Again, the volume and tuning knobs are a thoughtful touch.
The 2018 Porsche Macan is what the driving enthusiast needs to contemplate when requiring useful storage along with sublime sporty driving chops. The base model is sufficient for most (the most popular version) but some will gleefully spend up to get up to fire-breathing 400 plus horsepower, a load of giddy performance goodies and more sumptuous materials. If you’ve always yearned for a Porsche, this is a great place to start.
Test-drive the 2018 Porsche Macan at Park Place Porsche in Grapevine and Dallas.