Porsche's attempt to outclass Tesla fell flat
For the low price of $185,000 you can get yourself into a completely stock Porsche Taycan Turbo S. That’s six Nissan Leafs, five Tesla Model 3s, four BMW i3s, three Ford Mach E GTs, two Tesla Model Ss, or eight hundred eighteen partridges in pear trees—all of which are better than this overpriced mess of a vehicle.
Sure, the Porsche Taycan has a true base MSRP of $103,800 but do you want to know what you should spend that $103,800 on instead? Literally anything else. Let me tell you, for the $103,800 base price you get just that—a base car. Four wheels and an engine… wait, no engine.
If you just attempted to match the base features found in a Tesla Model S, your Taycan will run you somewhere around $114,000. That’s right, the Porsche Taycan is nearly 50% more in cost when compared equally to a Tesla Model S in regard to just options and features. That’s adding simple things such as power-folding mirrors, puddle lights, a panoramic roof, adaptive cruise control, an ionizer, heated seats and steering, a faster onboard charger, and the actual charging cable which happens to be a $1,120 “option”.
Meanwhile, all of these things come included in the $79,990 Tesla Model S base price. The Porsche Taycan has nearly $100,000 in available options to disrespect your finances further and still falls short from what comes included with a Tesla Model S.
Let’s compare specs for a minute. A base model Tesla Model S has a 373 mile range, 155 mph top speed, and a 3.7 second 0-60 for $79,990. For $103,800, the base Porsche Taycan 4S is comparable (excluding features) with a 0-60 of 3.8 seconds and a top speed of 155 mph. The smaller battery included for the lower price (79.2 kWh) does not yet have an EPA rated range but the larger “Performance Battery Plus” 93.4 kWh battery does with a whopping 201 mile range. Don’t worry, this “larger battery” is only a $6,580 option.
Due to the range being so embarrassing, Porsche has excluded it from its site. Seems like they’d rather sell you an electric car without informing you of how far it’ll go. Pretty ironic as Porsche was boasting the Taycan’s range prior to the unveiling. The company known for out-besting the best made a $200,000 electric car comparable in range to a $30,000 Nissan Leaf. I would take literally any other electric car over this when accounting for its ludicrous price tag. A fully loaded Porsche Taycan 4S will run you $195,870. Again, that’s the base model.
Above: Comparing the Porsche Taycan Turbo S with the Tesla Model S Performance (Chart: EVBite)
The top of the line performance model, the Taycan Turbo S, starts at $185,000 with options nearing the quarter-million mark. You’d imagine that Porsche, a performance-driven company, at this price point would make the best performance electric car available, right? Wrong. While holding relatively impressive performance numbers, Tesla took Porsche’s challenge and sent the German automaker crying home. The Tesla Model S beats the Porsche Taycan in range, 0-60, top speed, and charge time. Porsche tried to gloat with their Nürburgring lap time until Tesla beat that too.
A Porsche is a Porsche, I get that. But when I buy a Porsche 911 GT2 RS, I make no compromises. In fact, I’m buying one of the best performance vehicles available today. One that holds up to its company’s racing heritage. The Porsche Taycan is nothing but compromise. For what? Better quality leather? Yeah, no thanks, I’ll pass. It doesn’t suck, it’s just not good.
Above: Range remains a crucial metric for electric cars (YouTube: Sean Mitchell)
People tend to ask “how far ahead is Tesla?” Well, for some perspective, a 2008 Tesla Roadster has more range, a faster 0-60, and is currently available used for half the cost. This was all accomplished with a battery almost half the size. If you ask me, this is consequently a no-brainer.
The upcoming Audi E Tron GT will be built on a similar platform with the same battery. Maybe parent company Volkswagen AG can try to suck a bit less with that one. They can certainly do better…
An earlier version of this article appeared on EVBite. EVBite is an electric vehicle specific news site dedicated to keeping consumers up-to-date on any developments in the ever-expanding EV landscape.