This is Porsche’s Frankfurt concept car, the Mission E—an all-electric four-place sedan that draws some inspiration from the Le Mans-winning 919 Hybrid racer. Porsche doesn’t say it outright, but it’s obvious that this is where the company’s head is at with a Panamera replacement’s look and feel, and probably the powertrain of one of the future car’s versions.
The Mission E is motivated by a pair of Permanently-Excited Synchronous electric motors similar to the ones used in the 919—very efficient, if expensive, motors. Porsche Torque Vectoring transfers power to any of the four wheels; likewise, the car is equipped with all-wheel steering, just like the new 911 Carrera S. The battery (lithium-ion of unspecified capacity) sits in the underbody, like a Tesla Model S’s. Other drivetrain details are unspecified.
The important numbers are close to the Tesla P90D’s, but not exact, although comparing a concept to a production model isn’t an exact science anyhow. Porsche claims a 0-62 mph time of 3.5 seconds (compared to the P90D’s 2.8 second run to 60 mph), and the Mission E claims a longer range of 310 miles to the P90D’s 253 miles. The Mission E is claimed to make “over 600 hp”, less than the P90D’s 762 hp total output.
Porsche claims the Mission E will have a quick-charge capability that may exceed the 480V system that Tesla’s Supercharger stations use. Porsche’s 800V charging system is claimed to provide 250 or so miles of range in just 15 minutes, compared to the Supercharger’s ability to charge a Model S to 170 miles of range in 30 minutes. If that’s true, and Porsche can implement the charging infrastructure in any sort of meaningful way, Tesla owners are going to develop a serious case of charge-time envy.
Inside, there’s a lot of future-is-now information systems technology. Holographic instruments utilize parallax effect to keep information in view even when the driver changes position (and thus the angle between her eyes and the gauge cluster). The Mission E also has gesture control and eye-tracking—the system knows which instrument you’re looking at, and a steering wheel button will automatically bring up the menu for the gauge you’re looking at. Neat.
How much of this could make it to a production Panamera EV? The OLEV gauges and electric drivetrain are on-the-shelf tech, while the 800V system sounds like an infrastructure nightmare. Don’t be surprised if the next-gen Panamera makes it to production with an electric drivetrain, to supplement or replace the hybrid model, but don’t hold your breath for rear-seat holographic infotainment controls.