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Porsche Macan GTS Review by Rob Eckaus


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2017 Porsche Macan GTS

Could this be the best all-around vehicle on the road?

By Rob Eckaus
San Francisco Bureau
THE AUTO CHANNEL


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2017 Porsche Macan GTS
He's been in and out of sports cars for nearly a half century. Now the car trips are usually shorter duration, invariably hauling something, the vehicle sitting in parking public parking lots for minutes or hours. A nice sportscar gets attention, sometimes too much, having being keyed by some entitled tool full of wealth bias. And it scrapes the front on so many driveways. This 2017 Porsche Macan GTS is easy to get in and out of, it blends in, kind of, in the current landscape of utility vehicles. It hauls loads and butt. It offers easy cargo access and for those hauling infants and toddlers, easy access to car seats. Yet it’s also the old man’s sports car. Big 21” wheels and tires with Porsche tuned suspension and handling will embarrass or hang with numerous performance cars existing today in any handling or braking metric. Could this be the best all-around vehicle on the road? The crossover, essentially a raised station wagon, is a do-it-all vehicle.

The Macan GTS is powered by a twin turbo V-6 that produces 360 horsepower and 369 lbs feet of torque channeled through the Porsche dual clutch transmission (PDK). Coupled with torque vectoring all-wheel drive, Car and Driver tested it to a 13.0 second quarter mile at 105mph. Despite the 4492lb weight, it posted a spectacular breaking distance of 157 feet from 70mph. Granted the weight has an effect on the mileage rating of 17mpg city and 23mpg highway. The packaging is impressive, allowing for a 19.8 gallon fuel tank for less fill-ups, very convenient.

The acceleration has a nice mechanical, kind-of-a-spinning sound, very refined with snappy upshifts. Typical of Porsche, the handling is confidence inspiring and feels like a taller sports car but without the expected slop of a high ground clearance SUV/CUV. The ride is very comfortable with the air suspension dampers and not hampered by the 21” wheels with 265/45 tires in the front and 295/35 tires in the rear along with Porsche Active Suspension Management which lowers the ride height 10mm versus the standard Macan.

There are nice touches typical of Porsche, even with a lot of buttons surrounding the shifter. This example has the sport chrono package, heated front and rear seats, panoramic sunroof and keyless entry and drive. Having had a series of Porsches, the most recent a 2015 Cayman GTS previously reviewed, one of the surprises is the perfect Bluetooth acoustics and voice command system. Equating it to an acoustic enclosure, the noise cancellation and transmission is said to be spectacular.

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2017 Porsche Macan GTS
The navigation screen also has a cool touch to zoom in or out feature but it does leave fingerprints. And navigation summary provided on the 3rd gauge directly in front of the driver is very convenient. Also the home screen in the main display is configurable with the desired information, such as music, time/date, recent calls, navigation, etc. There is a rear parking camera and forward proximity sensors to aid in parking. The infotainment system is very well thought out but including Apple Car Play would be the next step feature wise.

The cargo capacity is good with the rear seats up, but not great. Two people headed to the golf course means taking a larger SUV or folding down the three-sectional rear seats. However looking underneath the cover reveals a temporary spare. However the orange colored wheel is probably to entice you to get it replaced or fixed immediately.

PHOTO (select to view enlarged photo)
2017 Porsche Macan GTS
The exterior is well styled, the red calipers a nice touch behind the turbo-style wheels. A close look at the front grill reveals the louvered opening that open and closes for the cooling efficiency of the radiator. Further inspection along the nicely aggressive front clip shows other cooling radiators. Porsche had headlight styling down to a science and interestingly the hood is somewhat of a clamshell with openings for the headlights and integrated vents that direct intake are to the air boxes, creating a seal with the hood. Very clever and the entire set-up actual makes it one of the few SUV/CUVs that show well. Yes, I mean at a car show.

It’s not perfect, but it’s close for overall utility, sport and practicality. The fuel efficiency isn’t great, the rating is 17 mpg city and 23 highway and the effortless acceleration will trend that downward. Doing build on the Porsche configurator, a power tilt and telescoping steering wheel didn’t seem to be available, but the owner has no issues with it, not needing to use it for ingress and egress.

If your use cycle is frequent loading and unloading or even children in car seats, but want something compact versus overly large for around-town use and frequent parking lot visits, a crossover utility vehicle is a great choice. But when the cargo is unloaded, or dropped off at daycare, what’s wrong with having a decent handling driver with 13 or even 12 second quarter mile capability? It’s about having the best of both worlds. Add the capability, engineering and performance of a Porsche, it’s tough to beat a Macan GTS, although there are a couple of higher horsepower models of 400hp and 440hp each...