For the first time, Porsche’s all-electric sedan is out testing in public. Here’s what we know about it.
Porsche stunned the world two years ago with the debut of its all-electric Mission E sedan concept, later promising it’d go into production in 2020. Today, we’re getting our first look at a Mission E prototype testing in public near Porsche’s development center in Weissach, Germany. So, what better time than the present to compile everything we know about Porsche’s first fully electric car.
It’s Not An Electric Panamera
Yes, Porsche already sells a sedan, the Panamera, but it’s not just modifying that car to create the Mission E. Instead, the Mission E will ride on its own bespoke platform, with its lithium-ion battery making up the floorpan between the its two axles, just as on a Tesla.
This platform will also likely make up the basis for Audi’s upcoming all-electric SUV, the e-Tron quattro. There’s also a rumor that Lamborghini is working on an electric car based off the Mission E, but we’ll believe that when we see it.
There Will Be Model Variants
Porsche doesn’t just make one 911, and the same will be true for the Mission E. Carmagazine spoke with Porsche boss Oliver Blume who confirmed that the Mission E will likely follow Porsche’s model preexisting hierarchy—that means you can expect a Mission E S, or a Mission E GTS. Maybe not a Mission E Turbo, though, since it won’t actually have turbos.
It’s Got a Clever Drivetrain
The Mission E will likely get four-wheel steering and torque vectoring as well. Porsche boss Oliver Blume promised in 2015 that the production Mission E would drive like a true Porsche. Typically, that means good things.
It’ll Be Priced Like a Panamera
For reference, a base 911 Carrera starts at $91,100 in the US, while the Mission E’s most obvious rival, the Tesla Model S 75D starts at $74,500.
It’ll Offer 800-Volt Fast Charging
At its Supercharger stations, Tesla uses 480-volt chargers that can provide its cars with around 170 miles of driving range in 30 minutes. Porsche is working on an 800-volt system that can provide around 250 miles of range in just 15 minutes. Of course, these 800-volt chargers won’t be plentiful, so the Mission E will be able to be charged on a 400-volt system or a typical household plug.
Porsche didn’t specify the size of the Mission E’s battery pack, but it did say that the concept offers 310 miles of driving range. That said, it’s worth noting that European and US EV-range testing is different, so we don’t yet know exactly how the Mission E will stack up against the Tesla Model S.
The Production Car Will Look Like the Concept
The Mission E concept combined futuristic looks with classic Porsche proportions to stunning effect, and thankfully the production car will too. Oliver Blume told Car magazine that the production car is “very close to what you saw two years ago at Frankfurt. It will be exciting but a bit different from the concept.”
It’ll Be the First of Many Electric Porsches
The Mission E’s platform is scalable, and Porsche is reportedly already working on a smaller version of the car. Oliver Blume also told Car magazine that different bodystyles are a possibility, plus, our colleagues at Car and Driver report that Porsche is already thinking about its next all-electric model.
Really, we should look at the Mission E as a prelude of what’s to come for Porsche. While the 911 will always have a flat-six behind its rear axle, it’s entirely possible that future generations of the Panamera, Macan, and Cayenne might be electric only. The Mission E is Porsche’s first foray into all-electric cars, but it most certainly won’t be its last.
It’ll Be On Sale By 2020
Barring any delays, the Mission E should go on sale sometime before the end of 2019 as a 2020 model year car. We wouldn’t be surprised to see it debut in production form at the Frankfurt Motor Show in 2019, the same place the concept debuted back in 2015.
The Mission E will break new ground for Porsche, and while that’s scary, it’s also incredibly exciting. We can’t wait to drive it and see what the future holds for one of our favorite automakers.