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Porsche’s most popular model by far – the Macan mid-size SUV – is about to be reinvented for 2023 as a battery electric vehicle (EV) to take on Mercedes-Benz, BMW, Lexus, Tesla, Ford and others.
Initially to be sold alongside internal combustion engine (ICE) powered versions with subtly different styling, the electric iteration of the second-generation Macan will use a version of Volkswagen Group's new Premium Platform Electric (PPE) electric architecture.
Just in case you’re wondering, that means an 800-volt architecture with up to 270kW of fast-charging capability, as well as a reported range of close to 500km on the top grade. This comes courtesy of a 90kWh-plus sized battery, supplying power to a motor on each axle.
The coalescence of technologies on the 2023 Macan should catapult Porsche into the EV big league against archrival Tesla, given that the Macan accounts for exactly half of all volume in Australia to date this year at 1724 sales, while the all-electric Taycan at 445 sales puts it in second place.
In fact, the latter is already more popular than the Cayman and Boxster combined (achieving 130 and 83 registrations respectively), as well as the iconic 911 range (316 units) – though if you add Cayenne Wagon and Cayenne Coupe SUV sales together, their 706-sales total bumps the Taycan into third place.
So, what will become of the Macan ICE models?
Some reports suggest that Porsche will retire these after about 2025 as tougher emissions restrictions loom, meaning that there will be no second-generation ICE-powered versions at all. Others say that they, too, will adopt the new look body, but on an evolved version of the current MLB platform.
Additionally, there will be visual differences in design between the 2023 Macan ICE and EV versions, including unique headlights, grille, bumpers, tail-lights and instrumentation, reflecting the varying demographics they will appeal to.
The existing Macan (Type 95B) hit the scene back in 2014, and though many observers dismissed it as an Audi Q5 in (expensive) Porsche drag, the finished products shared very few parts in common besides some platform and engine components where appropriate.
A sizeable facelift was announced in 2018, bringing changes to the nose, tail and interior, while another, much smaller alteration to the nose and trim was unveiled earlier this year, ahead of deliveries that are due to begin about now.
To recap, the previous Turbo has been dropped, the base car starts from $84,800 (+$500) before on-road costs, the S is now a sizeable $5000 more at $105,800, while the flagship GTS at $129,800 puts a further $17,500 hole in your wallet.
All petrol-powered, engines start with a 195kW/400Nm 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo (+10kW/+30Nm), helping the MY22 Macan hit 100km/h in 6.2s with the optional Sport Chrono package on the way to a top speed of 232km/h.
The old 260kW/480Nm 3.0-litre single-turbo V6 in the Macan S is ousted for a 280kW/520Nm 2.9-litre twin-turbo unit (capable of 0-100km/h in 4.6s and 259km/h), while the GTS features a 324kW/550Nm version of that, for a 4.3s and 272km/h result.
Drive is sent to all four wheels via a seven-speed PDK dual-clutch automatic transmission.
Revised adaptive dampers and newly available sports suspension with air springs (standard in GTS) complete the mechanical updates, while an overhauled 10.9-inch touchscreen also debuts.
Standard items include auto-dimming mirrors, keyless entry/start, rear privacy glass, Apple CarPlay support, powered front ‘Comfort’ seats, blind-spot monitoring, surround-view cameras, front and rear parking sensors, gloss-black interior trim and 19-inch alloy wheels.