Porsche quietly tweaked its Taycan EV’s biggest problem for 2021

Chris Davies - Jan 20, 2021, 1:00pm CST
Porsche quietly tweaked its Taycan EV’s biggest problem for 2021

Porsche has quietly increased its range estimates for the 2021 Taycan, addressing arguably the biggest criticism of the Tesla-rivaling electric vehicle as it launches its most affordable version yet. The new 2021 Taycan RWD brings ownership of the EV Porsche sedan down to around $80k before incentives, but there are also changes for the rest of the line-up that the German automaker hadn’t mentioned before.

As is usually the case, the new model year brings a variety of updates and tweaks to the 2021 Taycan. Along with new colors and cabin trim options, Porsche confirmed back in August 2020 that it would be making the 2021 Taycan Turbo S a little faster, and adding Plug & Charge to all variants of the car.

What it didn’t seem to be addressing was range, a dark cloud under which the Taycan had lingered since its initial debut. Despite Porsche’s early estimates, once the US EPA weighed in with its range testing the results weren’t exactly impressive. The automaker pushed back with testing of its own – with very different numbers as a result – but it’s the EPA figures that must be listed officially.

The Environmental Protection Agency is yet to weigh in with range numbers for the 2021 Taycan, but Porsche has previewed what it expects to see the line-up achieve. Its estimates, InsideEVs spotted, show a comfortable improvement over 2020’s figures.

The 2020 Taycan 4S with the 93 kWh battery was rated for 203 miles by the EPA; Porsche says the 2021 Taycan 4S (94 kWh) should do 227 miles, a 24 mile improvement. The 79 kW version of the 2021 Taycan 4S, new for MY21, is expected to get 199 miles of range when the EPA finalizes the numbers, Porsche suggests.

As for the Taycan Turbo, the 2020 version of the car with the 93 kW battery was rated at 201 miles by the EPA. For 2021, Porsche says it should achieve 212 miles, an 11 mile improvement.

Finally, the 2020 Taycan Turbo S was rated at 192 miles of range by the EPA. For the 2021 model year, Porsche suggests it should get 201 miles, a 9 mile improvement that nudges it just past the 200 mile boundary.

Porsche is clear that its numbers are still estimates, and the EPA may well decide differently. It’s unclear whether the automaker has used different test methods, or made improvements in power management that have unlocked a few extra miles along the way. That’s not unusual in the EV space: Chevrolet managed to add 21 miles of extra range to its 2020 Bolt EV with no change in battery size, for example. Instead, it modified cell chemistry and electronics.

Even with Porsche’s new numbers, the Taycan still doesn’t best key rivals like Tesla’s Model S. With the combination of a little extra mileage per charge, however, and support for DC fast charging along with Plug & Charge convenience, living with just what the electric Porsche’s batteries are capable of should be a lot easier.


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