Monday, June 6, 2011
2011 Porsche Panamera Cars
The Porsche Panamera production model was unveiled at the 13th Auto Shanghai International Automobile Show in Shanghai, China, on April 2009. In 2011, hybrid and diesel versions were launched.
The Panamera's name is derived, like the Porsche Carrera line, from the Carrera Panamericana race. Earlier prototypes and concepts of the four-door saloons, such as the 1991 Porsche 989 prototype, the four-door 911 based prototype, and the C88 supermini sedan concept for China, never went into production.
The Panamera is generally considered to be the long-awaited fruit of Porsche's 989 concept from the late 1980s; some argue that it also presents itself as a successor to the two-door 928, but there may be plans to develop a new 928 as well.
The Porsche Panamera and Panamera S are marketed as a direct competitor to full-size luxury sedan such as the BMW 7 Series and Mercedes-Benz S-Class. The high performance Panamera Turbo competes in the ultra-luxury segment alongside "exotics" such as the Bentley Continental Flying Spur, Aston Martin Rapide, and Maserati Quattroporte, as well as the top-performing versions of flagship luxury sedans. Similar vehicles to the Panamera include the BMW 5 Series Gran Turismo and Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class.
Like the Porsche Cayenne SUV (which has become the marque's best-selling vehicle), the Panamera upset many Porsche enthusiasts, since it was seen as an attempt to broaden Porsche's appeal beyond that of hardcore fans. The Panamera ran contrary to the company's signature offerings, particularly its light two-door rear-engine sports cars like the 911. The Panamera on the other hand is considered a full-size luxury car, weighing at nearly 4,000 pounds (1,800 kg), with four doors, and its V8 engine mounted in the front. The Panamera's unusual appearance with its long hood and bulbous rear hatch bears little resemblance to a stretched 911, although it does resemble the 911 from certain angles. The iconic 911 has a sparse interior, as it was focused on raw performance, while the Panamera has a sumptuous interior loaded with modern technological amenity and expensive leather upholstery.