Hello again, everyone. I’ve reached the 1-month anniversary of owning a Porsche Taycan 4S, and it has been an absolute blast. I’d like to start off by celebrating this moment with a Q & A post – one which features some of the most common questions I’ve received from friends and strangers alike, over this period of time.
The car has been wonderful despite a few first world problems that I’ve come to readily accept as an early adopter. This is reinforced with the confidence that Porsche will take steps to resolve whatever issues they are able to. In fact, Porsche Canada has already reached out to me to ask for some feedback or elaboration as it relates to some of these challenges, all thanks to this blog. That’s pretty cool, and was definitely unexpected.
Still in line with this milestone will be a more in-depth review outlining my experiences over the past 30 days, to follow shortly in a separate blog post.
Before diving into the Q & A, I would first like to say a big “thank you” to the audience and viewers of T’s Corner. I was not expecting the level of exposure my blog has been getting on social media, which for the most part came unsolicited.
It is the ultimate compliment that people not only appreciate my content for their own purposes, but also make the extra effort to share it with others so they can experience the same. For this, I am profoundly grateful.
Thank you to everyone who took the time to do all this, and to supercars.net for allowing me to borrow their platform, which has so clearly resulted in “T’s Corner” being able to reach a global audience.
Finally, to the Q & A:
Q: Is this your first EV?
It sure is. But I have owned another Porsche before – a 2012 Porsche 991.1 Carrera S which I have since sold. So I do have experience with the brand.
Q: Did you get a Taycan because you specifically wanted an EV?
Not at all. Anyone who knows me, knows that I embrace technology. I was never principally motivated to get a Taycan just because it’s an EV, but because it’s so much more than that.
Don’t get me wrong; the EV aspect was a selling feature for me and it was all pros, and no cons, when it came to the decision process.
One thing is for sure: I do not miss having to get gas – not one bit.
Q: Is it difficult or expensive to charge an EV?
For the most part, no to both. However, your experience will vary based on your accessibility to charging stations and what your @home electricity rate is where you reside.
Where I live, finding a station isn’t too difficult, though there is plenty of room to improve the infrastructure relative to some of the more “progressive” places in the world.
Q: How long does it take to charge at home?
On my 120/240v 50A outlet, it essentially takes 1 hour to charge 10%. Home charging is very much a come home, plug it in, charge over night, kind of affair.
Unless you want to pony up and install a fast charger at your residence, it probably wouldn’t get much faster than that. Don’t ask me how much, or if it’s even totally possible – I don’t know.
Q: Maintenance. What does that look like?
Other than the fact that it’ll probably not resemble anything close to what an ICE car goes through, I can’t really tell you – yet.
Service intervals as per the owner’s manual (and the car’s computer), are stated as every 2 years. My dealership is recommending to bring it in yearly – for the first visit at least – just to be prudent. It is a brand new model and a brand new car of this kind, after all.
What exactly is supposed to happen when it does goes in for service, I’ll find out then. Obviously, no oil changes, transmission work, etc. My guess is that software updates will make up a large component of the maintenance checklist, which is kind of cool.
Q: Any issues so far?
Nothing major. Basically a few first-world problems such as the less-than-optimal Apple Play integration, and the Home Charger occasionally bugging out and not the charging the car overnight – yes, it is plugged in when this happens, so it’s not user error (at least not blatantly).
Q: Is it like pretty much like a Tesla?
This is probably the question I hear the most, at greatly varying levels of specificity or clarity. And that’s perfectly fine, given that Tesla is deservedly the de facto benchmark and reference point for EVs today.
To provide some additional context – yes, I have driven the Tesla Model S, which is the car I assume most people intend to reference in this comparison.
Sorry. Now for the actual answer…
Yes. The Porsche is an EV, and so is the Tesla.
No. They don’t drive the same, feel the same, sound the same, or want to be the same as each other. And this is good for both sides, really.
As a Porsche enthusiast, I’d rather have an EV that drives like a Porsche, than to have a Porsche that drives like a Tesla. Hope that makes sense.
Q: Who makes a better EV? Porsche or Tesla (Model S)?
Ok, well there is actually no easy way to go about answering this. And if you’re someone who answers this question by immediately picking one or the other, without articulating any sort of context prior to stating your choice, then in my opinion, you don’t really understand either of these cars.
Here’s how I typically articulate my answer to this question:
The Taycan is a Porsche which happens to be an EV – not the other way around. While its drive train is unlike anything before it, the soul of the car embodies that of every other Porsche sports car in the line-up, 911s included (and especially 911s to be honest).
Anyone who has experienced a truly immersive and emotional connection to driving a car, is more likely to “get” what I’m talking about.
The Tesla epitomizes a shift in thinking, and a forward-looking approach to the future. It is a pioneer in the industry – and to be that, it has always had to do things very differently from anyone else.
From their manufacturing processes to their sales model, everything is basically an industry-first. This had rightfully made Tesla a car manufacturer in its own right, and it’s line-up of cars equally so.
Because of this, it commands almost cult-like brand loyalty; much like Apple, who has achieved something similar in the smartphone space.
Tesla is a tech company that started making cars. Porsche is a car company that started making EVs. Two different points of origination, influencing two very different end products.
Both are excellent cars in the purposes that they serve. What you want out of a car – or what’s better, for you – will ultimately determine which one you choose.
Q: So why’d you choose the Taycan over the Model S?
I think it should be fairly obvious at this point, but this is a good opportunity to elaborate more.
If you want a “tech car” and if range is a big deal to you, then Tesla is 100% the better choice.
I think range is a particularly important factor in the decision process regardless of which EV you buy, but if it is something that trumps everything else, don’t even consider the Porsche. Tesla has Porsche convincingly beat in that particular department, at least for now.
Want to feel like you are driving something that was over-engineered, providing the driving thrills you’d expect from a 911 or exotic sports car? Not going to sweat about sacrificing some range to have them? Get the Taycan.
While being an EV ultimately means that Taycan has some unique characteristics that its ICE or hybrid counterparts don’t have (for better or for worse), at the end of the day the Taycan is as much a Porsche sports car – if not more – as any other you can buy today.
And as you know by now, that’s why I went with the Taycan.
Q: Are those the stock wheels you have on right now?
No. They’re 20” Advan GTs that I originally obtained for my 991.1 Porsche 911 Carrera S (pictured above). When I sold that car, I kept these wheels with the hope of being able to use them on the Taycan.
I knew early on that the bolt pattern for the wheels would be the same as the Taycan. Once more technical details about the Taycan became available, it looked like these wheels would work very well, on paper.
Lo and behold, the widths of the OEM 20” wheels were the exact same as these Advans, with the offsets being almost bang on as well (in fact, they’re identical specs in the rears). This worked out nicely for me to be able to use these for summer, and the OEM 19″s for winter.
Before the purists get into a frenzy; don’t worry, I have OEM-spec Michelin Pilot Sport 4 XL (Extra Load) tires mounted on them. So no, the wheels aren’t going to become jelly and get crushed under the weight of the car…
As for the range “min-maxers” out there who got all hot and bothered that these wheels will increase my coefficient of drag by 0.1, and reduce my theoretical maximum range by 10 km (yes, this happened) – I don’t care, and neither should you.
Q: How does it compare to your Nissan GT-R?
This question obviously comes from friends who know that I have both cars. In any case, I can and will, only compare these cars based on the driving feeling.
I feel a much more tactile, intimate connection to the Porsche than I do with Nissan. Most of this is inherently a Porsche characteristic, but the EV aspect of the Taycan helps to accentuate those sensations that much more.
The smoothness, quietness and composure of the car enhances the connection I feel with it; how the chassis is behaving, how much the tires are gripping, and the tactile and progressive feedback of acceleration, braking and steering inputs.
The Taycan is on another level of confidence-inspiring, and that says a lot considering that the GT-R is well known for its role in so-called “automobile-to-human augmentation”– especially when driving at the limit.
It truly is akin to having a heightened sense of focus when all the raucous of an ICE car is muted or eliminated. Enlightenment, if you will.
With a stickier set of tires and PCCB, I’m sure it’d take my track-oriented GT-R at the track. Ok, perhaps not in all situations there; but it would certainly feel a lot nicer to drive.
Q: Is it the best car you have ever driven/owned?
At this moment, I will emphatically answer with a “yes”. Just like the commercials, I often find myself coming up with the most artificial of reasons to get into the car and go for a drive.
When I do, those drives often end up being longer, further and more spirited than I anticipated in the moments leaving the garage.