Porsche is giving the Panamera a mid-cycle update that will bring two new powertrains, better infotainment technology, and a handful of subtle visual tweaks. Offered as a short- and a long-wheelbase sedan as well as a Sport Turismo-badged wagon, the redesigned Panamera will arrive in showrooms for the 2021 model year.
Arno Bögl, the director of powertrain development for the Panamera line, told Motor Authority his team chose to replace the Turbo with a non-electrified Turbo S because “we needed more power.” To make it happen, his team took Porsche’s familiar 4.0-liter V8 and twin-turbocharged it to 621 horsepower and 605 pound-feet of torque, significant increases of 71 and 38, respectively, over the outgoing Turbo. Performance specifications haven’t been released yet, but the Turbo S should easily eclipse its predecessor’s 3.6-second 0-60-mph time.
Moving down the hierarchy, Bögl’s team created a 4S E-Hybrid that slots neatly between the 4 E-Hybrid and the 680-horsepower Turbo S E-Hybrid. Although this version will be available worldwide, it’s expected to be massively popular in Europe, where about half of the Panameras sold are ordered with hybrid power. In this context, the 4S emblem denotes a 552-horsepower gasoline-electric plug-in hybrid drivertrain built around a twin-turbocharged, 2.9-liter V6 engine. Porsche added a compact electric motor zapped into motion by a 17.9-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery pack that’s larger than the one in its current hybrids. It’s sandwiched under the trunk floor.
Here again, performance specifications haven’t been released yet. However, the bigger battery — which will later make its way to other plug-in Panamera variants — should unlock about 30% more electric range.
We haven’t seen the updated Panamera without camouflage yet, but the visual changes look minimal at best. Odds are new wheel designs and additional paint colors will be part of the update, too. Inside, Porsche pointed out it added a faster infotainment system, a higher-resolution touchscreen, and wireless Apple CarPlay.
Changes are in the pipeline for some of the other members of the Panamera line-up. Notably, the handling-focused GTS (the one Porsche’s own engineers all seem to prefer) will receive a 20-horsepower bump to 480.
Porsche is expected to take the wrap off the redesigned Panamera in the coming weeks, and the model will go on sale before the end of 2020. Pricing information will be released closer to its on-sale date. For context, the 2020 range starts at $87,200 for the base model and stretches to $198,100 for a Turbo S E-Hybrid Executive.