Porsche is a very adventurous car manufacture by any means.  They’ve made the legendary 911, the totally obtainable (at one point) Porsche Boxster, the cool Porsche Cayman and so many more.  So many that it would make this the longest comma-list ever.

Porsche has done so many incredible things, and as with so many years behind them and so much experience, there are some obvious duds.

in most cases, the bad apples Porsche has made aren’t exactly as bad as you’d initially think.

When the Porsche Cayenne came out, no one really jumped on it immediately.  It took some time but eventually things worked out and the world flipped.  A super car (or sports car) manufacture could effectively make SUV’s.  Impressive stuff.

It turned out Porsche could also make super cars and hyper cars with the Carrera GT and 918 Spyder, more recently.

Porsche is really the only manufacture out there who has really pulled things like this off.

However, there’s one dolphin in the room.

The original Porsche Panamera.

Porsche’s first try at the Panamera was an awful looking thing that looked super heavy and had hardly a redeeming quality.  It was brutal.

The first generation Porsche Panamera looked awful any way you spun it, and the market agreed.  As of late, you can get one second hand for around $40,000.  When the original sticker was very well near $100,000.  Possibly more.

Well, Porsche persevered and made the second generation Porsche Panamera and it is miles and miles better than the first generation.  That thing was an abomination that aged like mold.

The Specs-2016 Porsche Panamera:

Vehicle Type: Luxury Hatchback
Power Plant: 3.6 L Flat Six
Gearbox: 7 speed automatic
Power: 310 HP
MPG: Up to 28 Highway/18 City
Torque: 295 lb-ft.
Length: 197 Inches
Width: 76 Inches
Height: 55 Inches
Wheelbase: 115 Inches
Top Speed: 155 MPH (limited)
Seating: 4 Adults
0-60 MPH (0-120 KPH): 5.6 Inches
Base Price: $78,100 (est).

 

The Panamera:

The first generation Panamera is largely one of the most hated cars in the community, mainly for being so ugly.  And boy, was it ugly.  It looked super overweight and drove like it, too.

The interior of the original Porsche Panamera was probably the nicest part of the whole car, and it still seemed a bit cheap.

However, it was a very important car.

Porsche has a history of jumping into markets head first it seems.  They were one of the first of their kind to develop an SUV, which turned into a line of SUV’s with the Cayenne and Macan.  It wasn’t until very recently that other manufactures jumped on the train.

They also piloted the big luxury hatch that is the Panamera.  If it has any competition in its little niche market, they’re very few.

The first Panamera was gastly, but the new car is astronomically better in most ways.  It’s not until the 2017 model where the car is fully updated for Porsche’s new design language.

In the 2016 model, we see a huge host of updated looks, technology and power train over the original model which makes it better as a car.  But, styling is largely the same as the original car which is just…bad.

The Exterior-2016 Porsche Panamera:

2016 Porsche Panamera

The overall look of Porsche has always been apparent in each one its cars, and each line kind of wears the brand differently.

What I mean by that is that the Panamera, Macan and Cayenne all seem to share characteristics of each other; While Porsche’s sports cars like the 911, Cayman and Boxster share hints from each other.

Some of the most apparent similarities include the headlights.  Of this generation (2010-2016 or so) the Panamera and Cayenne share very similar headlight designs.  The same goes for the sports car line.

The exterior of the 2016 Porsche Panamera is largely an update or facelift from the original car, which means it’s just not as good as it could be.  The 2017 model is much nicer on the eyes.

The car still looks very heavy front to back, and almost like it’s struggled to handle its own weight.

On the front end, you get updated LED light signatures underneath the head lights and updated front fascia over the previous car.

These were the last front-end updates for the Panamera before the car was completely updated and redesigned for 2017.

The side of the car is largely the same as we’ve seen it since 2010.  It’s a very large vehicle still from the side and has nearly no athletic appeal to it.

I guess one thing that the side profile does well is look big.  Which according to Jeremy Clarkson, is what American luxury is all about.  Just make it bigger.  So plus one to the Panamera.

The rear end of the Porsche Panamera only really has its nicely sized hatch as a redeeming quality.  It opens up to plenty of room in the trunk for all your Porsche memorabilia.

But, that’s about it.  The rear end of the Porsche Panamera is just hideous.

I wanted to say that the quad exhaust tips are very cool, but legit anything looks cooler with quad exhaust tips.  So here, they seem more like a cheap way to to score favor with audiences.  I’d like to think Porsche isn’t that malicious, but it sure looks like it.

The thing just looks like a blubberly mass with way too much cheek.

Overall, the car is just not good.  The 2016 Porsche Panamera is going down as Porsche’s top ugliest cars and it’s sad.  But I guess it isn’t all bad any more.

I’ll extend an olive branch because the 2017 model is lovely.  While I still wouldn’t put money into owning one, it is a hundred times better to look at over the 2016 model.

I’m glad there have been so many advancements over the previous car for the new car.  Truthfully night and day.

The Panamera took somewhat after the Cayenne in this way.  The Cayenne evolved into a nicer vehicle over time.  But I still wouldn’t buy one.

I think we can sum this one up just by saying I’m happy they redesigned the Porsche Panamera.

The Interior-2016 Porsche Panamera:

Porsche Panamera

Life inside any Porsche surprisingly gives you a similar experience no matter what model you chose.  Very Audi sounding.  Which makes sense because they’re both owned by Volkswagen.

But inside of Porsche’s, it can be difficult to tell each model apart.  Every car from 911 to Boxster to even the Macan and Cayenne, you get largely the same lay out and styling.

Now honestly this isn’t that big of a deal, and I don’t think it’s a real deal breaker.  However, it’s kind of annoying.

Just like with Audi, who have the same exterior design for every single car on their lot, Porsche brings in the old “If it isn’t broken, don’t fix it.” mentality.

Again there’s nothing wrong with that, and sales numbers agree, but I’m sure they can do much better over at Porsche.  I feel like we need to band together and stop auto makers from copy and pasting every car to death.

Anyway, the 2016 Porsche Panamera.

In any configuration, you get much of the same story here.

There are some very nice things inside the 2016 Porsche Panamera (and even the e-hybrid) that I actually like, and there are things that I don’t like.

What I do like, is the wood that you can configure into your car.  The wood inlays you can get inside look very Rolls-Royce and that is clearly a good thing in a big executive sedan.

You can spec even the older style Porsche Panamera to have a very sharp interior.  The layout is very functional (as it is on every Porsche) and there is a lot of room for customization for you.

Now things I don’t like, and most of them are issues I have with how outdated things look inside.

First off, the steering wheel is clearly from previous cars.  Not that big of an issue, but it just looks old no matter what.

The array of buttons on the center tunnel is not easy on the eyes, and like most things here, Porsche fixed it on the new car.

The Panamera features a very exclusive two plus two seating arrangement.  Which means it will seat four adults comfortably in its lovely looking seats.

On the center tunnel, you also get plenty of options in the backseat.  Lovely.

The Performance-2016 Porsche Panamera:

There is a 3.6 L flat six cylinder engine underneath the hood of the Porsche Panamera.  It develops a competent 310 horse power and 295 pound feet of torque.

This makes for a decent but no where near fast zero to sixty time of six seconds.  For this price range, that is behind nearly everyone.

MPG ratings are decent, at 28 miles per gallon on the highway and 18 miles per gallon in the city.  This sort of thing is to be expected from a car like the Panamera.  Things obviously change as you move up the line of configurations like the GTS and E-Hybrid, but that’s the base cars numbers.

Over all, performance is decent.  Again there is a lot of room for improvement.  But, the 2017 Porsche Panamera fixed all of this.  Get the 2017.

Sum It Up:

The 2016 Porsche Panamera is just as we’ve seen from the car for years.  It came out and didn’t wow everyone, but things are much better for the 2017 model.

Get the 2017.

With a starting price around $80,000, the Porsche Panamera faces a lot of the same issues that the Maserati Ghibli faces.  It just isn’t worth the money.

Get the 2017.

 

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