The Porsche Panamera is named after the Carrera Panamericana road race and offers buyers some unique attributes. No other luxury car looks quite like the Panamera, and no other is meant to be quite so overtly sporty.
Porsche claims that producing a four-door GT was a dream of company founder Ferdinand Porsche, although until now they have been the preserve of independent tuning firms and determined individuals outside of the company.
That said, Porsche did flirt with the idea itself - in 1998, then Porsche engineer (now Aston Martin chief) Ulrich Bez was tasked with preparing a prototype four-door GT to build on the success of the 928. It became the 989, a front-engined, rear-drive saloon with the general shape of a stretched 911. It never reached production, but some of its details made their way onto the 993-series 911.
Porsche arrived at the Panamera project determined to ensure it's official take on the four-door GT did not dilute the brand's reputation for sportiness. As a result, we suspect, no other manufacturer is prepared to be quite so compromised in its pursuit of that outright dynamism. Even the fastest versions of luxury saloons – with the possible exception of the Maserati Quattroporte – don’t usually sacrifice their latent comfort.
The Panamera line-up consists of a 3.0 diesel V6 or petrols including a 3.0 V6 mated to a hybrid system, a 3.6-litre V6, with or without four-wheel drive or Porsche’s PDK double-clutch gearbox, a 4.8-litre V8 again with or without four-wheel drive and the option of PDK (and also available in the track focused and more powerful GTS edition), the Turbo which gets the lot and 493bhp to boot or the Turbo S which gets 543bhp.