Supercars and hypercars, at their core, are intensely interesting cars. No matter the marque, no matter the price, or the design, each super or hypercar serves as a blip in automotive history, a cross-section of performance and technology at the time of construction. Looking back at the supercars of yesteryear, we can use those as a barometer to gauge how far we have come. With this in mind, Porsche claims the second-generation of the large and heavy Panamera Turbo sedan will scuttle around the Nurburgring with same urgency as the almighty Porsche Carrera GT hypercar.
Indeed, the next Panamera Turbo will be an earth-bound meteor, apparently capable of conquering the ‘Ring in as little as 7:28, the time Walter Rohrl set astride the Carrera GT. This claim came from Autocar’s early ride-along in the super-sedan with Gernot Doller, head of the Panamera program.
Despite the shared badge, the two cars couldn’t be polar opposites. In one corner, the early-2000s Carrera GT was a low-slung, mid-engined wedge, with a 5.7-liter race-derived V-10 engine spinning out 612 hp and 435 lb-ft of torque. Power is sent to the rear wheels through a six-speed manual transmission. The Panamera Turbo is a stark contrast, with four doors, relatively lumpy profile, twin-turbocharged V-8, and all-wheel drive hooked up to Porsche’s best dual-clutch PDK transmission.
Where the Carrera GT favored mechanical simplicity and lightness, the Panamera Turbo will pack the very best tech the German automaker can cram under the skin. It will be extremely comfortable and luxurious, which results in a heavy car, compared to the sub-3,200 pound Carrera GT.
In the end, this just gets us hot and bothered to drive the upcoming Panamera, a car able to comfortably haul your kids to school and tackle the most formidable track in the world as fast as an early-2000s hypercar.