The Macan’s bold styling takes a number of cues from the second-generation Cayenne, including a rather bluff front end that varies in look depending on engine. A large clamshell-style bonnet aids engine bay cooling and features oval-shaped cut-outs for the headlights, sides that run all the way down to the front bumpers.
Predictably, the interior has an upmarket feel. The look again draws heavily on the Cayenne, but subtle changes help set the Macan apart, including a multi-function steering wheel similar to the 918 Spyder’s. The rest is familiar, with a three-dial binnacle, touchscreen multimedia system and a high-set middle console housing a sea of switches. It looks cluttered, but the ergonomics are excellent.
As for the standard equipment, the Turbo is available in two forms – standard and with Porsche’s Performance Package. The Macan Turbo rides on 19in alloy wheels, an aggressively-styled bodykit, adaptive bi-xenon headlights, electrically adjustable front sports seats, Alcantara roof lining, and a Bose sound system as standard.
The Performance Package adds not only more power to the Turbo, but also the optional Sports Chrono pack, which includes launch control and more extreme driving modes, adaptive dampers and a 15mm lower ride height.
The Macan Turbo line-up consists of a twin-turbocharged 3.6-litre petrol engine that is described as being all new, although a naturally aspirated version of the same unit has appeared in the last-gen Panamera. Here, it produces 394bhp at 6000rpm and 405lb ft from 1350rpm.
While the Performance Package and the limited edition Exclusive Performance Edition helps the Turbo’s engine punch out 434bhp and an additional 37lb ft of peak twist.
Having a blast in the Porsche Macan Turbo
The Macan Turbo is pleasingly smooth, with an engine that pulls well from the front, is potent through the mid-range and accepting of high gears at low speeds.
There’s some low-end lag, but the V6 is terrifically energetic on boost. With a short-stroke design, the engine also revs with great conviction for a forced-induction unit, rushing up to 6700rpm without feeling remotely breathless before hitting the limiter.
It is just a pity that the new V6 sounds so characterless no matter which driving mode – Standard, Sport or Sport Plus – is chosen. There is an entertaining burble to the exhaust, but it is more often than not drowned out by excessive induction blare. You wouldn’t call it bland, but the noise is rather insipid.
The engine impresses, but it’s the standard seven-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox that really shows its class. It is fast, smooth and intuitive and has the ability to perfectly match revs on downshifts. The four-wheel drive system directs torque to the rear wheels and, when the conditions call for it, to the fronts, giving the Macan a distinctly rear-drive bias.
Despite a kerb weight of 1925kg, the Macan Turbo driven here can hit 62mph from rest in a claimed 4.6sec and 100mph in 10.9sec. Porsche doesn’t limit the top speed of its production models, and the same is true of this SUV, which is claimed to reach 165mph. Even so, this most powerful of Macans is also relatively economical. Official figures claim 31.7mpg combined. Driven briskly over a mix of urban streets, autobahns and country roads, we returned an indicated 25.8mpg.