Porsche is close to officially confirming its eagerly awaited fifth model line, with details starting to leak out of the company’s HQ, including the new four-seater’s name: Panamera. The name was registered by Porsche last July and is expected to adorn a concept version of the four-seater at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September. Insiders describe the new model, exclusively revealed by Autocar on 9 December 2003, as a combination of coupé and saloon.

Due to grace showrooms in 2008, the V8-powered Panamera is designed to seat four with a boot capacity of up to 450 litres. The four-door will be pitched directly against cars such as the BMW M5, Mercedes-Benz CLS and Maserati Quattroporte.

Secrecy surrounds the mechanical basis for the new car, although rumours suggest Porsche chairman Wendelin Wiedeking has forged links with Volkswagen on a new rear-wheel-drive platform program, in a tie-up similar to that undertaken with the Cayenne and Touareg 4x4s.

Volkswagen chairman Bernd Pischetsrieder has let it be known that he is interested in adding a new rear-wheel-drive model to the Volkswagen line-up, possibly to replace the Phaeton (right) and, after the recent breakdown in talks with Maserati, another co-operation with Porsche may be on the cards. There have even been suggestions the new platform could be used by Bentley underneath a successor to the Arnage.

Power for the new four-door Porsche will come from the same 4.5-litre V8 engines found in the Cayenne. They include a naturally aspirated version with 340bhp and a turbocharged unit with 450bhp. An even more powerful variant with over 500bhp is also in the pipeline.

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • Nissan Leaf Tekna
    The is the new Nissan Leaf
    First Drive
    21 March 2018
    The new version of the world's best-selling electric car gains a bigger battery and more power. How does it compare to rivals such as the Volkswagen e-Golf?
  • Range Rover p400e
    First Drive
    20 March 2018
    The original luxury SUV is now available as a plug-in hybrid, promising lower emissions and the capacity for silent electric motoring
  • BMW i3s
    Car review
    20 March 2018
    Revised hatchback sets out its range-extended electric stall in a new, sportier tune
  • BMW X2
    This is the new BMW X2
    First Drive
    20 March 2018
    Doesn’t deliver many typical crossover selling points but looks perky, handles keenly and is well capable of winning over your latent cynic
  • First Drive
    20 March 2018
    The newest version of Rolls-Royce's flagship model sets new standards for opulence and luxury whether you're driving it or being driven in it