Bigger, better looking, and with a striking Shooting Brake brother, the next-gen Panamera finally shapes up.
IT’S taking a while, but here is conclusive evidence that a Porsche Panamera Shooting Brake is set to join the range soon.
Out sometime after the G2 (for second-generation) series surfaces at the Paris Motor Show in October, the Panamera Shooting Brake – caught testing alongside its sedan stablemate – will most likely be dubbed a 2018 model. It resembles closely the Sport Turismo Concept that all but stole the 2012 French event.
Both Panamera body styles utilise Volkswagen Group’s all-new MSB modular rear-wheel drive architecture (with all-wheel drive capability). This is set to also underpin the D5-series Audi A8 due sometime in 2017, as well as a host of future Bentley models based on the Continental GT, such as the Flying Spur and Mulsanne. Rivals include the Mercedes-Maybach S600, Aston Martin Rapide and Maserati Quattroporte.
Featuring advanced composites in its construction, MSB is understood to be both lighter and stronger. It is also designed to accommodate electrification in hybrid as well as full PHEV plug-in electric vehicle mode, as alternatives to the range of new and/or revised twin-turbo V6 and V8 petrol and diesel units earmarked for the Porsche passenger car flagship.
As with the sedan, the Shooting Brake/Sport Turismo will feature a far more modern approach to the interior layout compared with the existing G1 Panamera, with touchscreen technology eliminating the cornucopia of buttons, for a cleaner and classier appearance.
More importantly, a wheelbase stretch will see a welcome increase in rear-seat legroom, even though Porsche’s designers have made the next Panamera a little narrower than before.
Of course, the Shooting Brake/Sport Turismo’s extended roofline and more upright silhouette should do wonders for luggage space, addressing one of the biggest issues afflicting the G1 Panamera.
At the other end of the spectrum, some reports suggest that a truncated two-door version of the G2 Panamera is under consideration as a latter-day Porsche 928 replacement, though whether the Germans have decided to go down the four-seater GT coupe path is unknown.
In sedan guise, today’s Panamera ranges from just over $204,000 to nearly $450,000 (Turbo S AWD PDK), so expect the Shooting Brake/Sport Turismo to add around 10 percent to those prices when it lobs in about two years time.
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