Porsche is diving head-first into the vat of battery acid these days - with the Panamera S E-Hybrid refreshed with quad-LEDs in the headlamp ring and the new Cayenne S E-Hybrid sharing the square-LED quad DRL setup of the top-line Cayenne Turbo and Cayenne Turbo S.
Proudly on display alongside the 918 Spyder and a few Porsche PHEV plug-in stations on the lawns of Amelia Island Concours, the E-Mobility Porsches are promising and smoother, quieter and more serene than anything else to wear the Porsche crest.
This is largely thanks to softer suspension tuning in standard drive modes, alongside a torque-converter eight-speed automatic. This slushbox is a big change versus the PDK auto that is typically the only PRNDL choice for these two four-door porkers.
In white with polished wheels and dark-painted inner spokes, the Porsche Panamera S E-Hybrid and Cayenne S E-Hybrid are still rocking the bright-green color accent on the badges, brake calipers and other detailing. This is starting to feel dated, as is the super-premium pricing of the E-Hybrid models from Porsche. Considering the half-price gasoline in the USA versus this time a year ago, the $35,000 premium for the hybrid models over base V6 engines is starting to feel quite unnecessary indeed.
Atop that, the resale value of every plug-in hybrid vehicle was recently cited in KBB.com as a major drag on resale values. Anything with a plug and a gas engine -- or all pure EVs bar the Tesla Model S --- typically are worth 25-percent less than its gasoline or diesel equivalent after 3 years. That is a dramatic loss in value. Buyers prepared to shell out $150k for a new Porsche hybrid are surely smart enough to know a bad value when they see one.
At least until gasoline spikes again, the Porsche E-Mobility push is feeling quite out-of-touch with the times in Spring 2015. That might explain the Turbo-style details in the LEDs of these pluggers....
Why are they jacking up these precious Porsches in a few of the photos? To make sure the wheel caps and their Porsche emblems are laser-level on all four wheels! Impressive. Prestige Autos US is the fleet of choice, from Porsche USA's hometown in the ATL.
2015 Porsche Panamera S E-Hybrid