Tuesday, September 11, 2007

The Porsche Panamera

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The Porsche Panamera is a four-door, four-seat sedan, currently still in concept stages, set to be launched in 2009. It will be front engined and rear wheel drive and powered by a modified version of the 4.5 L V8 found in the Cayenne, equipped with the FSI system invented by Volkswagen (Porsche and Volkswagen collaborated on the Cayenne/Touareg sport utility vehicle platform). Base spec models will be engineered with a 3.6 litre V6 found in the upcoming 2008 facelifted Cayenne, and there is even a hybrid version in the pipeline. Rumours suggest that the V10 engine from Porsche's limited-run Carrera GT supercar may be offered as well, although this is still extremely unlikely given the expense of manufacturing the engine and that Porsche does not currently have a facility capable of producing a suitable number of the V10 per year. A rumour is also around that the V12 diesel from the Audi Q7 could make it into the Panamera.

The final assembly of the vehicles will take place in Leipzig. Engines will be assembled in Stuttgart, and the car's painted body will come from the Volkswagen facility in Hanover.

The Panamera is generally considered to be the long-awaited fruit of their 989 concept from the late 1980s; some argue that it also presents itself as a suitable successor to the 2-doored 928, although some amount of debate surrounds this. It will be marketed as a direct competitor to automobiles such as the Mercedes-Benz CLS 55 AMG and Maserati Quattroporte and (to a lesser degree) a less expensive alternative to vehicles such as the Bentley Continental GT, Ferrari 612 Scaglietti and Aston Martin Rapide. It is the first V8-engined sports car built by Porsche since 1995, when the 928 was discontinued and will be produced in the new plant at Leipzig alongside the Cayenne. The vehicle has been caught testing at the Nürburgring and the original sketches are a little more sleek than the taped up model spied testing

Artist renderings of the car already distributed by Porsche show a low-slung, four-door sports car with narrow side windows and flowing lines. However spy shots of the Porsche Panamera testing at the Nürburgring show a more blunt car than the artists renderings.

The Panamera's name is derived, like the Porsche Carrera line, from the Carrera Panamericana race. Earlier prototypes of four-door sedans such as the 1991 Porsche 989 prototype or the even earlier 4 door 911 based prototype, never went into production.

On the 20th of April 2007 a spy video of the Porsche Panamera became available on the net.

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