The Taycan battery electric vehicle (BEV) has been something of a body beautiful for bold hues since its launch in 2019: we’ve seen it in the likes of Frozenberry, Cherry, Mamba Green, Van Gogh art (okay, that was for a show)… and pretty much anything you like thanks to the Porsche Exclusive Manufaktur “Paint to Sample” programme.
But here we have the new Taycan GTS, in a very Porsche-traditional metallic silver. And that really works, because in many ways the new GTS brings the high-tech pure-electric Taycan further into the heritage fold. New-tech comes to old school.
As previously discussed (so many times… sorry), Porsche’s GTS monicker dates back to the 1963 904 GTS and has been revived in modern times to signify a machine that doesn’t skimp on the luxury, but is still very much a track-capable machine. In something like a 911, that’s the sweet spot for us real people: the best of both worlds without going silly either way.
The Taycan is pretty low-key on the outside; just some special alloys (our car wears the optional $5160 RS Spyder Design 21-inchers), reshaped skirts and the GTS-signature black detailing.
But it’s not primarily about the look. The GTS fits in between the 4S and Turbo models in price/power but also stands as arguably the most aggressive Taycan you can buy. Not the fastest, of course: the Turbo is half a second quicker to 100km/h, the Turbo S nearly a full second.
But the air suspension in the GTS is 20 per cent stiffer for better track performance and it’s GTS tradition to scoop up some choice bits from the models above: it gets the electric motors from the Taycan Turbo, with tweaked Sport and Sport+ drive modes that are much more eager to send all those kW to the back. The stability control has also been modified.
You can add “nimble” to the list of adjectives for our car, which came with the $4020 Rear Axle Steering option, which in turn includes Power Steering Plus (speed-dependent assistance).
If that all sounds a bit much for everyday driving, the Taycan GTS still plays luxury road car better than the new 911 GTS, which we did find a tad too tight on Kiwi tarmac. That extra stiffness makes its presence felt for sure, but not to the extent that your passengers (you can have up to four in a Taycan with our car’s “4+1” option) will be complaining.
When you click the drive mode controller around to the sportier side, the GTS is clearly a wilder iteration of the Taycan.
Any Taycan boasts an impressive quantity of properly dynamic character, with great steering and that two-speed transmission on the rear axle; you even sometimes get blippy downshifts. But the GTS really squats down under power through corners and you can feel that rear axle coming alive.
Just to make the point about the Taycan’s top-end talents, Porsche’s switchable Electric Sport Sound (it amplifies and adjusts the actual noise of the motors) gets a harder-edged tone in the GTS.
In broad terms the GTS is just as everyday-useable as any other Taycan. It’s a sedan with decent space for four (the rear occupants even get a “foot garage” shaped into the underfloor battery), but it’s still primarily a sports model: low and intimate. It really is like a four-door, electric 911 – although the bootspace is sedan-decent with 366 litres out back and another 84l in the frunk.
Surprisingly, the GTS does bring some new eco-tech to the Taycan range as well. In Normal and Range (that’s the super-thrifty one) modes, the front axle is almost completely disconnected and “de-energised”. When coasting, both axles are now basically freewheeling.
These updates mean the GTS is the first Taycan to crack 500km WLTP range, although they are also being applied to other models. The super-fast 270kW charging capability (100km range in five minute in ideal conditions) remains, at least when you have access to NZ’s Hyper Charger stations.
There’s a strong argument that the GTS is the “just right” Taycan for the enthusiast-BEV driver. Ultimately down to personal taste of course, because the range is so broad. But it’s certainly a carefully considered and very worthy addition to the GTS line.
PORCHE TAYCAN GTS
ENGINE: 93kWh battery, dual electric motors
GEARBOX: Two-speed automatic, AWD
0-100KM/H: 3.7 seconds
CONSUMPTION: 23.3-20.3kWh/100km, range 439-504km (WLTP)