2018 Porsche Macan Review

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When Porsche decided to step into the SUV segment with the Cayenne, Porsche purists we’re all that happy, expecting the brand to soldier on with different 911 variants until times end. But, the Cayenne turned out to be a huge success, and the German brand decided to come out with a compact model named the Macan. Originally codenamed Cajun, the Macan hit the market in the spring of 2014 and became an immediate success, being one of Porsche’s most sold models. Be that as it may, the compact luxury segment is intense, so Porsche needs to keep things fresh until the next-gen model comes to be at the turn of the decade.

Now, we’re getting a first look at the facelifted model thanks to a new round of spy shots. There won’t be a whole lot of change on the table, but the headlights and taillights should get a new layout, and it looks like there’s a bigger chin spoiler up front. The interior is set for some minor nips and tucks as well, and the available engines could get some minor retuning to help keep things interesting.

With that said, we know Porsche’s facelifts aren’t typically that in-depth, so there won’t be a lot of significant change, but the subtle things will make all the difference. We expect the facelifted Macan to debut sometime in the next few months and should be sold as a 2018 model, so let’s take a closer look before Porsche spills the beans.

Exterior

Porsche Macan

As is the usual case, not a lot will change with this facelift. The same hood will carry over as will the same general body shell. Up front, it looks like this prototype is wearing different headlights while the louvers in the vents below the headlights look to extend much farther, almost touching the grille. The front grille should remain the same, but the air dam down below is taller, while the lip is bigger and extends further from the nose. The fog light area has also changed. It isn’t as deeply recessed as before and looks like it may get horizontal fog lights as opposed to the round units found on the current model.

Porsche Macan

The rest of the Macan appears to carry over unchanged.

Moving over to the side profile, there’s nothing new to speak of. It’s possible that we’ll see some new wheel designs with this facelift and a new standard color or two. It’s the same story in the rear as well, but the taillights are wearing some tape, so it’s likely there’s something fresh going on here. Chances are, Porsche will go with a clearer, more Euro-style lens to make the rear end pop a little more. Or, it could end up with rear lights that are similar to those found on the new Panamera. Outside of that, the rest of the Macan appears to carry over unchanged.

Interior

Porsche Macan

Note: Current Porsche Macan interior pictured here.

As far as the interior goes, we haven’t gotten a good look inside this prototype. Even if we did, we probably wouldn’t see much anyway. The interior of the Macan is already pretty top notch. It’s filled with sophisticated and strategic lines, precise transitions, and more than its fair share of leather.

The dash will go unchanged, but new trim inserts may be offered.

The seats may end up getting a different stitching pattern but should carry over with just as much side support. The dash will go unchanged, but new trim inserts may be offered. The Burmester, 16-speaker system should get a minor update but will likely come with the same 300-watt, class-D amplifier. The Bose system will still be an option and pump out 545 watts. Eight-way power seats up front should be standard, but sports seats should be available as an option. It will, of course, have Porsche’s PCM system with an 8.4-inch touchscreen display.

The only other changes to the interior may include a revised steering wheel and a revised instrument cluster. The infotainment display could get a software update to include new graphics throughout. Again, this is just a minor nip and tuck to get the Macan through the next few years, so less should be more in this case.

Drivetrain

Porsche Macan

Note: Current Porsche Macan engine pictured here.

Given the sheer minimalist nature of this facelift, as we can see it thus far, I wouldn’t expect to see any changes in the drivetrain department. But, that doesn’t mean it isn’t possible. The entry-level Macan comes with a 2.0-liter four-cylinder with 252 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque. All-wheel drive is standard as is the seven-speed, dual-clutch transmission. Mileage is claimed to be 20 mpg in the city and 25 mpg on the highway. It tops out at 142 mph and can hit 60 mph in 6.3 seconds. Moving up to the Macan GTS will get you a 3.0-liter V-6 with 360 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque. It can get you to 60 mph in 5.0 seconds and tops out at 159 mph. The Macan GTS is also available with a diesel in some markets. That engine delivers 258 horsepower and 427 pound-feet of torque – it’s a torque demon, really.

Porsche Macan

Note: Current Porsche Macan engine pictured here.

I wouldn’t expect to see any changes in the drivetrain department. But, that doesn’t mean it isn’t possible.

Finally, the Macan Turbo comes with a 3.6-liter, twin-turbo, V-6 that delivers a cool 400 horsepower and 406 pound-feet of torque. Like the rest, it gets all-wheel drive as standard but can hit 60 mph in 4.6 seconds or 4.4 seconds if you opt for the Sport Chrono package. As far as any updates go, Porsche could surely tune any of these engines to deliver a little extra oomph, and it would certainly make customers happy. If Porsche does go that route, expect that 2.0-liter to get closer to the 260-horsepower mark, while the 3.0-liter would likely jump up to 365 ponies. The Macan Turbo may not get any powertrain updates, but that 400-horsepower V-6 could be massaged to pump out as much as 420 horsepower without much of a problem. For now, however, it’s all just speculation, so we’ll have to wait and see.

Macan (Not Available in U.S.) Macan S Macan Turbo
Engine layout Front Engine Front engine Front engine
Engine type Turbocharged I-4 twin turbo 90 degree V6 twin turbo 90 degree V6
Cylinders 4 6 6
Fuel injection Direct fuel injection Direct fuel injection
Fuel Premium Premium Premium
Displacement 2.0 liter 3.0 liter 3.6 liter
Maxmimum power output @ engine speed 252 hp @ 5,000 – 6,000 360 hp @ 5,500 – 6,500 rpm 400 hp @ 6,000 rpm
Maximum torque @ engine speed 273 LB-FT @ 1,,500 – 4,500 369 LB.-FT. @ 1,450 – 5,000 rpm 406 LB.-FT. @ 1,350 – 4,500 rpm
Power-to-weight ratio (LBS/HP) 12.1 10.6
Drivetrain All-wheel-drive, with electronically controlled, map-controlled multi-plate clutch All-wheel-drive, with electronically controlled, map-controlled multi-plate clutch All-wheel-drive, with electronically controlled, map-controlled multi-plate clutch
Top track speed (MPH) 142 159 164
Acceleration 0-60 MPH 6.3 5.0 4.6 (4.4 w/ Sport Chrono)

Prices

Porsche Macan

The current Porsche Macan has a pretty staggered pricing schedule. The entry-level model starts out at $47,800, but if you’re looking to get the GTS, you’ll have to shell out a minimum of $68,900. Finally, the range-topping Turbo starts out at $77,200. These are all before options, taxes, and delivery as of March 2017. As for the facelifted model, I don’t expect prices to change too much at all but could go up a few hundred bucks across the board.

Competition

BMW X3

BMW X3

As I said before, this segment is pretty ripe with competitors, and the BMW X3 is one of the key players. It does start out remarkably cheaper than the Macan at $39,250 for the sDrive28i, but with 240 horsepower on tap, you’re only losing out on 12 ponies while saving some $8,000. The exterior look isn’t exactly stunning, but it’s not bad either. It features a similar design up front with a tall air dam but has tall fake vents in the corner. This model is available in AWD form for $41,250. If you really want to compete with the entry-level Macan, you’ll have to go with the xDrive35i, which delivers 300 horsepower from a 3.0-liter inline-six. 60 mph comes in 5.3 seconds, and you’ll be asked to pay $47,950. The X3 can’t compete with the GTS or Turbo, however, as the xDrive35i is the range-topping model, so you’ll have to look at something else if you want a competitor for the higher-range Macan.

AUDI Q5

Audi Q5

The Q5 was built to compete directly with the X3, but it poses a pretty serious threat to the Porsche Macan as well. The first-gen model lasted from 2008 to 2017, when Audi decided to surprise us with the second-gen model. It comes complete with Audi’s latest design language, upgraded engine options, suspension, and rides on the MLB platform which also underpins the Audi A4 and the Audi Q7. The Q5 actually grew a bit in comparison to the first-gen model but managed to shed 198 pounds at the same time. Inside, you’ll find a spacious cabin with all of the latest technology, a well-defined dash, and a steering wheel that makes you feel like you’re riding in a sports car. Under the hood, you get the choice of a 2.0-liter four-cylinder with 220 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. This engine enables the Q5 to hit 60 mph in seven seconds on the way to a top speed of 130 mph. There’s also a 3.0-liter V-6 for the taking that’s optional in mid-trim form and standard on the range-topping model. It’s supercharged and delivers 272 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque. 60 mph comes in six seconds while top speed sits at 130 mph. Pricing for the Q5 starts out at $40,900 for the Premium trim, $43,150 for the Premium Plus, and $53,200 for the range-topping Prestige trim.

Conclusion

Porsche Macan

At this point, I’m really hoping that Porsche has a few more tricks up its sleeve before we see this thing in production guise. Sure, new exterior lights and a new front fascia are nice and all, but at the Macan’s high price point, you can save a lot of money if you go with the right competitor. You won’t necessarily get quite as much power, but both the X3 and Q5 are very nicely equipped inside. Of course, Porsche could be planning a new generation in the next couple of years, so this is just a hold over to breathe a bit of fresh air into the Macan to keep it going just a little longer. What do you think of the mule in the pictures you saw today? Let us know in the comments section below.

LOVE IT

  • Porsche is keeping the Macan fresh
  • New exterior lights
  • Could see some new technology
LEAVE IT

  • Will be a rather dull facelift
  • Will only prolong it’s life by a couple of years
  • Not likely to see any powertrain updates

(topspeed.com, https://goo.gl/q41R6J)

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