Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Review: 2016 Porsche Macan

Compact crossovers are characterized by four general characteristics: five doors, five seats, higher ground clearance, and a commanding seating position. The devil is in the details though as every carmaker, whether mainstream or premium, has put their own unique stamp on this proven formula. For a brand such as Porsche though, there’s extra scrutiny involved; after all, this is the carmaker that’s renowned the world over for creating poster-worthy flights of fancy. All eyes are set on the Macan—a compact crossover that blazes its own trail and doesn’t follow the lead of others.

The design brief of the Macan is fairly simple: create a genuine Porsche in everything from design to driving dynamics while delivering what’s required of a class-leading premium compact crossover. In that regard, it delivers beautifully. It’s all about sporty style and performance engineered for the racetrack injected into everyday driving.

It starts with the Macan’s exterior which lays bare the dominant sporty genes of Porsche’s hereditary line. Compared to other crossovers, it’s much more curvaceous with a strong 911-like silhouette. It’s characterized by the integrated headlights with four-point LED daytime running lights, the large imposing air intakes, and the stretched hood that flow onto the wheel arches. The side profile itself is muscular while the roofline slopes distinctively down the back. Overall, it draws a customary sports car profile that designers call the Porsche flyline.

Inside, the strong lineage continues. Porsche has always emphasized that the driver and car must form a single entity, and the Macan harks back to that tradition. As the creator of the iconic 911, the ergonomic architecture integrates one into the vehicle. The essentials are all seen at a glance. The instrument cluster has a three-tube design with a central tach—just like a sports car. The ascending center console looks imposing and requires some time to master, but it allows easy access to the most important vehicle functions while looking somewhat aeronautical inspired. Every surface too speaks of high quality with soft-touch plastics, padded leather inserts, and brushed aluminum accents.

One area where the Macan splits from its familial roots is in its packaging. It offers ample space not just for the pilot and co-pilot upfront, but it allows two (three in a squeeze) more friends to tag along for the ride. Compared to some compact crossovers, the rear quarters are a bit tight, but the seats themselves are comfortable. Finished in a combination of leather and Alcantara, they’re supportive, supple, and perfect for long drives out of town. Plus, when not in use, it folds down in a three-way split for added luggage space.

Equally impressive is the Macan’s generous list of standard features. Typically, Porsche wants customers to dig through its long list of options to feel satisfied, but even the base Macan comes reasonably loaded. Outside, it features automatic bi-xenon HID headlights, 18-inch alloys, power folding mirrors, and LED rear lighting. Inside, the driver’s seat moves electrically, the tailgate has power operation, the climate control has three configurable zones, and the Porsche Communication Management or PCM now includes Bluetooth audio streaming and telephony. For safety and security, it even has front and rear proximity sensors with a rear parking camera. The only glaring thing missing is cruise control.

And speaking of drives, the Macan must have performance built in as standard; after all, it’s expected from the purveyors of the 911. This starts with a 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cyinder motor that generates 252 horsepower and 370 Nm of torque. There’s a subtle hesitation in power delivery, but once it delivers the goods, it delivers them with a knockout punch. The century mark arrives in just 6.7 seconds and terminal velocity is at 223 km/h. The entire experience actually livens up because of the lightning response of the Porsche Doppelkupplung or PDK. This dual clutch automatic features quick up- and downshifts letting the driver experience motorsport-style gear changes. It also incorporates a coasting mode which reduces fuel consumption. And speaking of fuel efficiency, it does 6.02 km/L in the city (average speed 16 km/h) and 16.12 km/L on the highway (average speed 52 km/h).

The electromechanical steering is weighty and responsive; perfectly matching the sporty characteristics of the Macan’s suspension tuning. It still cannot negate the laws of physics when being thrown into a corner at high speed, but there’s a great degree of neutrality, balance, and willingness to rotate that’s unheard of in this segment. The rear-biased all-wheel drive system also allow for increased driving dynamics and stability. It works its magic, sending power in an infinite split to the set of wheels that need it the most. Together with the mixed tires, it offers great traction and agility. Though not expected of it, there’s even a dedicated Off-Road mode that re-calibrates the drivetrain (throttle, gearbox, torque split) to maximize traction for temporary off the beaten path excursions.

The Porsche Macan is built for an intensive life, where the main driving force is challenge. It’s built for a life that reduces to be hemmed by conventions and in that regard, feels more authentic for it. It also adds a little spice in the premium compact crossover segment. It’s compact, concentrated, and intense; practical but never ordinary. It’s always been Porsche’s mandate to build a sports car in every segment they compete in and in that regard, the Macan succeeds. It allows one to realize a sports car experience in the way it gives an intimate relationship with the road and yet boasts of added practicality for leisure and life. The only thing it doesn’t leave room for is compromise.

2016 Porsche Macan
Ownership 2016 Porsche Macan
Year Introduced 2014
Vehicle Classification Compact Crossover
The Basics
Body Type 5-door SUV
Seating 5
Engine / Drive F/AWD
Under the Hood
Displacement (liters) 2.0
Aspiration Direct Injection, Turbo
Layout / # of Cylinders I4
BHP @ rpm 252 @ 5,000-6,800
Nm @ rpm 370 @ 1,600-4,500
Fuel / Min. Octane Gasoline / 95~
Transmission 6-speed AT
Cruise Control No
Dimensions and Weights
Length (mm) 4,697
Width (mm) 1,923
Height (mm) 1,624
Wheelbase (mm) 2,807
Curb Weight (kg) 1,770
Suspension and Tires
Front Suspension Independent, Double Wishbone
Rear Suspension Independent, Multi-link
Front Brakes Vented Disc
Rear Brakes Vented Disc
Tires Michelin Latitude Sport 3 235/60 R 18 W (f), 255/55 R 18 W (r)
Wheels Alloy
Safety Features
Airbags 6
Anti-Lock Brakes (ABS) Yes
Traction / Stability Control Yes
Parking Sensors Yes, Front and Rear, with Camera
Exterior Features
Headlights HID
Fog Lamps Yes, Front and Rear
Auto Lights Yes
Auto Wipers Yes
Interior Features
Steering Wheel Adjustment Tilt/Telescopic
Steering Wheel Material Leather
Seating Adjustment Electric (driver)
Seating Surface Leather/Alcantara
Folding Rear Seat Yes, 40/20/40
On-Board Computer Yes
Convenience Features
Power Steering Yes
Power Door Locks Yes
Power Windows Yes
Power Mirrors Yes, with Fold
Climate Control Yes, 3-Zone
Audio System Stereo
No. of Speakers 10
Steering Wheel Controls Yes


  1. Wow. These small European SUVs are even wider than full sized Japanese SUVs.

  2. Replies
    1. Don't ask if you can't even afford one.

    2. Haha that's right. You think those people who can afford one would still take time to ask the price in a car review site? Ofcourse not. They'll just go at the dealership and pay in full cash.

    3. What if I can afford one? Of course people would check the price list/price guide online, especially those who are busy. That's why there's a price guide.

    4. A person who can afford one would just read the review and if he likes it, he'll go to the dealership. Then and there only will he ask the price. People who check the price list are budget conscious, meaning they're financially constrained.

    5. Price is P 4,598,000 (if I remember the latest price list).

    6. One fairly common trait among billionaires is that they're careful spenders. These are people who can afford yachts but will haggle/argue up to the last dollar or complain about the price of potato chips. Details are important, and the price is part of the details.

    7. A truly wealthy person who wants to stay wealthy will always check the purchase price and will even consider cost of maintenance.

    8. Correct! That's what you call careful and smart budgeting.

    9. Kung ganoon eh di mag wigo na lang kayong mga so-called "billionaires". Ang gagaling niyo pala eh.

  3. If it's a Porsche, then it should only have Boxer or V engine, right? Why this one is inline?

    1. Engine is based off Audi/Volkswagen.

    2. Hi Aeron. A common misconception among younger automobile enthusiasts is that Porsche only builds Boxer 6, V6 and V8 engines. In actuality, Porsche has offered inline-4 engines and boxer 4 engines in their production sports cars. Inline-4 engines were the staple for their 924 and 944 lines (that 944 Turbo Cabriolet was a looker). Boxer 4 engines started with the classic 356 models, the 912, the mid-engine 914, and now the 917 Boxster and Cayman.

    3. I see... Thanks! The same case with Subaru. They don't only sell cars with Boxer engines. They also sell Inline engines in Japan with their kei cars and trucks. But for me, it would be nice to see the Macan be offered with Boxer engine. If not, there's still the more powerful V6. c",)

    4. I wouldn't be surprised to see that in the all-new Macan. Porsche did develop a flat-4 turbo for the 718 Boxster and Cayman so using this in the Macan could be a possibility.

    5. Putting the 718's Boxer-4 with 300hp into the Macan will put the compact SUV into another territory. Practicality of an SUV with handling and performance of a sports car.

  4. We began this adventure by purchasing a Porsche Macan S and picking the car up at the Porsche factory in Zuffenhausen, Germany... the road trip is now "official". This segment of the series is dedicated to the actual driving experiences along the way.

    1. So where is your Porsche Macan S now, in Germany?

    2. In his dreams probably.

  5. I wouldn't be surprised if Porsche would develop an even smaller SUV to go against the likes of BMW X1, Merc GLA and Audi Q3.

  6. this is only the low end version, rather get the new volvo xc90, safest crossover out there. but hey that's my opinion.