We’re all used to a little bit of circuit optimisation to make track-focused combustion cars that bit faster - now it’s happening for EVs, too. Equipped with a new performance kit - more on which in a sec - a Porsche Taycan Turbo S has set a new, official Nurburgring lap record for electric cars, at 7:33.35.
Which is rapid for any kind of vehicle, leave alone an electric four-door saloon that weighs more than two tonnes. It’s notable as well as it means the 625hp Taycan (the 761hp figure you often see is a launch overboost) has lapped faster than the 1,020hp Model S Plaid, which previously held the record with a 7:35.579. Furthermore, it puts the Taycan less than four seconds from the Panamera Turbo S, which set a 7:29.81 to be the old record holding incumbent for executive cars. Until it was beaten by AMG.
As with the V8 four-door, Lars Kern was driving this lap. “In the past, only thoroughbred super sports cars got into the 7:33 range,” he said. “With the new performance kit I was able to push even harder, and the car was even more precise and agile to boot.” Ah yes, this performance kit. Porsche says this includes 21-inch RS Spyder-style wheels (as found on everything from 911s to Macans) along with Pirelli P Zero Corsas that are road legal but have a compound ‘similar to that of racing tyres’ - which will surely have been worth a few seconds a lap. And won’t come cheap when they inevitably need replacing far sooner than hoped. The Turbo S used at the Nurburgring was also equipped with an update to the Porsche 4D Chassis Control, designed to make the most of the stickier tyre. (It also got a cage and a racing seat, though Porsche maintains it weighed the same as a standard car.)
Which is the good news - watch the video for evidence of some truly staggering corner speeds. On the Nordschleife’s long, flat out sections, the Taycan can’t compete with the Panamera - see peak speeds of 268kph against 297kph - only to scythe through every been and get within a few seconds. The bad news is that you can’t buy a Taycan Turbo S with the performance kit, for now at least. It’s a Porsche Tequipment option that’s only being offered to German customers, carried out post-registration at Zuffenhausen. Talk of retrofitting at least means existing owners (and not just new ones) might be able to upgrade their Taycan to record breaking spec.
“We’re delighted that the Nürburgring record for electric cars is back in Porsche hands,” said Kevin Giek, Porsche’s Vice President of the Taycan model line. “This lap time not only shows how much potential lies in our new performance kit, but also confirms once again the sports car genes of the Taycan.” Tesla, over to you…
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