Three letters have most recently spelled ‘pick of the range’ for Drive when it comes to Porsche models – GTS. Trent Nikolic finds out whether the 2022 Porsche Taycan GTS carries that tradition into the future with a road and track test at launch.
- As effortless to drive on-track as it is around town
- Combination of range and huge power
- Quality cabin and typical Porsche ambience
- Long warranty please Porsche
- Some of the options should be standard
- Synthetic engine note isn’t fantastic
From the get-go, Porsche made an impact with the electric Taycan. There are a few good reasons for that, not the least of which is the higher price of electric vehicles sitting much more acceptably with a fan base that had been paying a premium for a Porsche badge for some time.
Porsches have never been ‘cheap’ as such, and it’s an easier sell in the premium end of the market than it is the much more cost-conscious end of the market. So, in a way, the Taycan started from a different place than an electric Kia, Hyundai, Nissan or similar.
Here we are, then, a few years later, where the Taycan continues to impress and buck the trend of electric cars that can’t quite match the soul of their petrol-powered siblings. We’ll endeavour to answer that question here, as well as find out whether the GTS is still the specification to have.
A Porsche with a GTS badge tends to sit in the middle point of the range, offering a compelling mix of affordability and performance with just enough of what you do need, and nothing that you’re missing out on. That’s the case with the 2022 Porsche Taycan GTS, which starts from $241,900 plus on-road costs in Australia. As you can see, the options prices below do add to the drive-away cost, and we’d wager that you don’t need every option our launch Taycans had fitted to them. You could easily find $5–$10K in savings to get back closer to the base price.
The Taycan range starts from $159,700 before on-road costs for the entry-level rear-wheel-drive variant, which is solid value. From there you step into 4S AWD starting from $198,800 before on-road costs, before getting to the GTS AWD we’re testing here. Next in the range is the Turbo AWD from $281,900, and finally Turbo S AWD from $352,600, both before on-road costs.
GTS sits apart in the range thanks to the blacked-out styling elements within the front bar, headlights, exterior rear-view mirrors, side sills and exterior window trim. Optional wheels add to the exterior appeal, and there are subtle differences to the bar design as well. Striking colours like the Carmine Red of our test vehicle make an impact too.
While Turbo and Turbo S models are obviously faster and a little more exotic, the GTS sits neatly in the range at a price point that more people can access while still providing formidable performance. Crucially, the GTS feels like a special car, both in appearance and the experience from behind the wheel.
Competitors are few despite most luxury brands moving into the EV sphere. Audi, BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Jaguar all offer electric vehicles, but none quite do what the Taycan does in the same way. It’s fair to also say that most buyers we speak to aren’t cross-shopping a Porsche. They want a Porsche because it’s an aspirational vehicle. In that sense, the Taycan delivers strongly on the feel-good factor.
|Key details||2022 Porsche Taycan GTS|
|Price (MSRP)||$241,900 plus on-road costs|
|Colour of test car||Carmine Red|
|Options||GTS Interior Pack – $8370
PDCC Sport – $6870
21-inch wheels – $5520
Carmine Red paint – $5000
Rear-wheel steering – $4300
Onboard AC charger – $3500
Passenger screen – $2150
Door sill guards – $2120
Advanced Climate Control – $1720
Porsche Design clock – $1390
Electric charging cover – $1310
Home energy manager – $1150
4+1 seats – $1000
Ambient lighting – $890
Colour-coded key – $780
Cabin ioniser – $600
LED courtesy lights – $600
|Price as tested||$289,170 plus on-road costs|
|Rivals||Audi E-Tron GT | Mercedes-Benz EQS | Tesla Model S (when it returns on sale)|
The cabin of any Taycan is a high-quality place to be. With GTS further up the price tree than the entry-grade model, you get the elevation in ambience you’d expect with that higher price tag. Thud the door closed and you’re in a cabin that immediately lends itself to a long-distance cruise, eking every bit out of that claimed range you can.
Driver and passenger get comfortable seats (18-way electric as standard) with adjustment that means visibility is excellent and comfort is high. You can sit down into the cabin if that’s what you prefer, or lift the seat up for a higher-riding position.
The seats themselves strike a neat balance between sport and comfort. If you’ve got six-footers up front, rear-seat leg space does get tight, but there’s more room back there than you’d expect given the almost coupe-like roof line.
If back seat occupants are taller, they will feel a little cramped in terms of headroom, but that’s only once they get beyond the six-foot range, as well. The cabin is otherwise premium, and comfortable no matter how nasty the road surface.
Luggage space is useful, too, with 84L up front in the small boot, and 366L out back in the regular hatch section. If you’re a family of four on a road trip, you’ll have enough room for your luggage.
In what is a minor gripe, I’d like a little more cabin storage for things like keys, wallets and smartphones, but that really is a minor complaint, and the door pockets come in handy here too. Overall, there’s very little to take issue with inside the Taycan GTS.
|2022 Porsche Taycan GTS|
|Luggage volume||366L rear / 84L front|
Infotainment and Connectivity
Strangely, Porsche still offers Apple CarPlay but not Android Auto, which is a pain for those of you not tied to Apple’s OS. On test, CarPlay worked faultlessly, as did the proprietary satellite navigation system. There’s a head-up display, which is easy to read even in the brightest middle-of-the-day sunlight, and it’s a feature we reckon should be standard in more cars.
Run through Porsche’s Communication Management and Porsche Connect system, the infotainment is easy to access and decipher despite the fact there’s a lot going on through various menu systems. Porsche Connect covers elements as simple as music streaming, but also charge management, vehicle pre-climatisation, range management and other connected services. An embedded SIM means you have an LTE connection via the vehicle as well.
The high-resolution 10.9-inch touchscreen is responsive and clear, in any light, and something as simple as zooming in on the map is easy to do. Our launch cars also had the optional passenger screen, which seems like tech for the sake of tech, but does add to the experience, and can also be blacked out if you’d rather not look at it when you’re driving solo. You get two USB-C ports up front, two more in the rear, DAB radio, and a high-quality Bose audio system standard.
As is the case with any EV, there’s a lot of functionality to get familiar with in the menu system, even beyond those that control the power and charging functions of the powertrain. The system that Porsche uses, though, is an easy one to work out and everything is straightforward, even for the first-time user. There are also the regular control options in the centre console.
The driver gets a 16.8-inch curved display that now seems completely at home inside the Taycan despite initially feeling almost space-age. You can customise the display to suit your tastes, and it’s beautifully laid out and easy to read in all light. I remember feeling a little sad the first time I sat behind a Porsche steering wheel and couldn’t see the traditional Porsche dials, but now, in this platform especially, I like the future take on driving information.
Safety and Technology
As is standard for Porsches we test here, the Taycan GTS hasn’t been rated by ANCAP locally. It does score well on the Euro NCAP testing program (five stars in 2019), though, and comes standard with a decent list of safety equipment. For starters, the LED headlights and DRLs are useful on even the darkest rural roads around our big cities.
There’s also an active bonnet system, a full suite of airbags including curtain airbags along the entire roof frame and side window sections, rollover detection, seatbelt warning system, lane-change assist, lane-keep assist with corrective steering, active lane-keep assist with traffic jam assist and emergency assist, cross-road assist, collision and brake assist, park assist front and rear with surround view and active parking support including rear cross-traffic alert and exit warning.
|2022 Porsche Taycan GTS|
Value for Money
We’ll test the Taycan’s credentials more accurately when we have one for our regular week of testing, but on paper, the GTS looks to offer genuine real-world efficiency. Our launch drive was sullied somewhat by a decent highway run, then a pretty enthusiastic punt on some country roads before a flat-chat track session – in other words, not the fairest way to measure how efficient it really is.
|At a glance||2022 Porsche Taycan GTS|
|Warranty||Three years / unlimited km|
|Service intervals||24 months or 30,000km|
|Energy consumption (claimed)||25.9kWh/100km|
|Battery size||93.4kWh (83.7 net)|
|Driving range (ADR)||485km|
|Charge time (11kW)||9.0 hours|
|Charge time (50kW)||93 minutes (5-80 per cent)|
|Charge time (max, 270kW)||22.5 minutes (5-80 per cent)|
The Performance Battery Plus system gives you a 93.4kWh battery pack with a claimed range of 485km. Porsche quotes a usage figure of 25.9kWh/100km. 20.3kWh/100km to 23.3kWh/100km is what we should expect, with those numbers seemingly easily achievable around town.
On the freeway, you will eat into that range as we know, but we’ll report back in more detail once we spend a regular week behind the wheel. Nine hours for a charge from zero to full makes sense for most home owners with access to an 11kW charger.
The Taycan GTS’s most potent feature is its ability to deliver so handsomely on a racetrack, but then be so benign on the open road. It’s the mark of any truly great Stuttgart product, and once again, the GTS delivers. 380kW is enough to raise a few eyebrows, but with ‘overboost’ in effect, you get a mammoth 440kW and 850Nm to all four tyres via two permanent magnet synchronous motors. Out back, there’s a two-speed transmission, while the front axle gets a single-speed version.
At 2295kg, the Taycan isn’t light, but man does it feel fast. 0–100km/h takes just 3.7 seconds, a mere half-a-second slower than the Turbo. Launch the Taycan GTS on the track and it feels like a three-second car, too, without the mechanical cacophony.
The GTS will continue the run to 200km/h in 12 seconds flat, and can cover the standing quarter in 11.8 seconds. Once upon a time, an 11-second car was almost undriveable in day-to-day traffic. It’s staggering where technology has taken us, and it’s these numbers that lead us to make the comment you don’t ‘need’ any more Porsche than the GTS badge offers.
With the Performance Battery Plus, you get a claimed range of 485km, which is up near that 500km mark we’ve always said will break the barrier for most people sceptical about whether an EV will work for them. On that subject, the GTS excels as a road trip chariot.
On the road, the GTS feels staggeringly well tailored to comfort given how capable it is on-track. It’s firm, yes, but it’s never uncomfortable, even when you find a nasty mid-corner rut that seems set to upset the balance of any car with sporting pretensions. The GTS remains tied-down and absorbs such bumps with disdain.
Fully electric all-wheel drive, along with rear-wheel steering as fitted to our launch vehicles, means you have the surety and balance usually only associated with the most exotic sports cars. Three driving modes allow you to move between Normal, Sport and Sport Plus, depending on your mood and the road you’re on. While that 440kW output is only unleashed when you’re under full launch-control situations, 380kW feels mighty just about everywhere else.
On the road, you merely breathe on the accelerator pedal and the GTS fires out of a corner with a serious shove, gaining pace way too quickly for our speed limits. As with any electric vehicle that has this kind of performance intent, you’ll need to watch the speedo closely, as triple digits are very close at hand.
As with any Taycan we’ve tested, the GTS is seamless once you start to accelerate and continues until you lose your nerve. There might be the slightest of sensations as the two-speed transmission changes ratio, but I didn’t feel it on test. At speed, you’ve got plenty of more important things to worry about.
While the PASM (Porsche Active Suspension Management) is undoubtedly focused more toward usability than outright performance, it does a beautiful job of working across a broad range of driving expectations. Adaptive damping is standard, with a specific tune to suit this model, and as such it strikes an impressive balance between ride quality and handling prowess.
Steering is always a big-ticket item for any Porsche, and the electromechanical system used in the Taycan GTS is excellent. It’s sharp, responsive, and direct, meaning regardless how hard you’re pushing you have confidence to spear the Taycan into a corner, knowing it will keep the line you’ve asked for. ‘Steering weight’ is a mythical thing, talked about often but rarely defined, and yet the feel through the wheel when you’re attacking corners is rewarding for the driver.
Rear-wheel steering as fitted here makes a measurable difference, albeit beyond the realms of the average driver on a regular road. It will assist with both low-speed movability and high-speed precision, though, and that’s the key here. Even if you can’t actually feel it working, trust that it is.
Regardless of what you’re doing, how hard you’re pushing, or the conditions of the road, the Taycan GTS is an effortless touring companion – exactly as we expected.
|Key details||2022 Porsche Taycan GTS|
|Engine||Permanent magnet synchronous motor (front and rear axle)|
|Power||380kW (440kW with overboost)|
|Drive type||Four-wheel drive|
|Transmission||Two-speed transmission (rear)
single-speed transmission (front)
|Power to weight ratio||166kW/t
The most confounding question we get asked every time we drive a Taycan is perhaps the most obvious. “Does it feel like a Porsche?” The naysayers are hoping we’ll say no, and the Porsche fans are hoping we’ll respond with a resounding yes. I’ve got bad news for the naysayers. Engine and exhaust soundtracks aside, it does. It feels every bit like a Porsche.
It’s fast, it’s effortless, it’s practical, it feels hewn from stone, the cabin is beautifully executed and, crucially, it’s as easy to drive fast as it is to roll around town. That last point might be the most ‘Porsche’ thing the Taycan does. Whichever way you measure it up, the Taycan feels like an impressive Porsche car.
Once again, the GTS makes the most sense to us, too, in a range that covers the gamut of models and price points. Yes, more is more, we know that, and we advocate for the faster models often. If you have the budget, buy a Turbo S. You’ll be grinning from ear to ear. But, as we’ve discovered with the Macan and even 911, the GTS is all the Porsche you’ll ever need.
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