Few marques have been more willing to buck tradition than Porsche. True, performance is the brand’s hallmark, but starting with the launch of the original Cayenne SUV, the Stuttgart-based carmaker has repeatedly pushed beyond its comfort zone.
As radical as a Porsche SUV might once have seemed, however, that was nowhere near as radical as the decision to launch an all-electric sports car, the Mission E barely than a year away from production. And, as we learned today at the Geneva Motor Show, that battery sports car is likely to soon have a companion in the form of Mission E Cross Turismo.
‘The Mission E Cross Turismo is an expression of how we envision the all-electric future. It combines sportiness and everyday practicality in unique style,” said Porsche AG CEO Oliver Blume. “Our vehicle will be fast to drive, but also quick to recharge and able to replicate its performance time after time.”
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For the moment, at least, the Mission E Cross Turismo is being described as a “concept study,” but it’s also being referred to by Blume as a “continuation” of the electrification plan first launched with the Mission E sports car which made its debut at the Frankfurt Motor Show in 2015. The bottom line is that we’re quite confident we’ll be seeing it join the Porsche line-up in the not-too-distant future.
At 194.8 inches nose-to-tail, the Turismo is slightly longer than the 191-inch Mission E sports car and appears to stand ever so slightly higher, as well, though only limited specifications have so far been released.
Visually, the four-seater falls somewhere between a station wagon and a crossover-utility vehicle, with Porsche suggesting it has some “off-road elements. Whether that means it can handle something rougher than a gravel road – or post-winter potholes in Michigan – remains to be seen.
The battery pack is likely to be similar, if not identical, to the 90.0 kilowatt lithium-ion arrangement in the earlier Mission E concept. In the sports car, that is expected to yield somewhere under 300 miles of range, though neither European nor U.S. EPA tests have yet been run.
Like the upcoming production Mission E, the Cross Turismo relies on two synchronous electric motors, one on each axle, to provide through-the-road all-wheel-drive capabilities. The crossover appears to be getting a 10 hp bump from the earlier Mission E, from 590 to 600 horsepower. Torque numbers aren’t available, but the sports car concept was rated at 664 pound-feet. The increase in hp likely reflects improvements in motor technology since the first concept was revealed more than two years ago.
Porsche claims the Turismo concept will hit 100 kmh, or 62.5 mph, in “less than 3.5 seconds,” and 200 kmh in “under 12 seconds.
While those numbers aren’t quite a match for the Tesla Models S or X with optional Ludicrous Mode, the German automaker took a subtle slap at its American rival by noting in a press release that, “This performance is in addition to a continuous power level that allows for multiple launches in succession without losing performance, which is unprecedented among electric vehicles.”
The two Tesla models can only manage a handful of aggressive launches, and a couple track laps, at best, before the batteries and motors overheat and force a driver to slow down.
The Mission E Cross Turismo also boasts the capability of using an 800-volt Level 4 charging system – like the one every U.S. Porsche dealer is expected to have in place before the sales launch of the Mission E sports car next year. That would allow an 80% top-off of the battery in around 20 minutes, though using a more conventional Level 2 home charger would require something more on the order of five hours.
(Click Here for more on Porsche’s plans for a super-fast charging system to support its Mission E launch.)
The decision to introduce a crossover version of the Mission E should come as no surprise. The Cayenne and smaller Macan are already Porsche’s best-sellers and utility vehicles have come to increasingly dominate luxury sales worldwide. A production version of the Mission E Cross Turismo would seem to be positioned to be a bigger seller than the more conventional sports car model – if, as expected, it is added to the line-up.
(Mercedes-AMG GT 4-Door will include a new hybrid performance package. Click Here to see the new model.)