The Porsche World Road Show is a unique event that takes place the world over.
It is held at circuits that allow a driver to fully exploit a Porsche’s potential.
And when it comes to the Cayenne, rather than on-circuit driving, the now iconic SUV is driven on dirt tracks to show off its off-roading capabilities.
The PWRS in short, was recently held at the Sepang International Circuit.
And the entire circuit was booked, because half-track driving in a Porsche is borderline nonsense.
The cars were pretty amazing too – we got to spend time behind the wheel of the Cayenne, Macan GTS, Macan Turbo, Taycan Turbo and the Taycan Turbo S.
The star of the show though was the new 992 Porsche GT3. A car so brilliant that it deserved an article of its own, which you can read here.
Our day started in the Taycan Turbo S – a car deemed as the hardest accelerating electric car ever built.
It does the 0-100km/h in just 2.8 seconds, and reaches a top speed of 260km/h.
The electric motors that power the car are also some of, if not the best in the industry.
The motors give the car 622hp and 1050Nm of torque.
But with the overboost function selected, the car puts out a staggering 750hp!
Of course, such amazing capabilities doesn’t come cheap – the Taycan Turbo S costs an eye watering RM1.15 million!
Then we hopped into the Taycan Turbo.
I do wish we would have done it the other way around though.
Because after the brutality of the Turbo S – the Taycan felt subdued. Like a hungover horse being asked to gallop.
But despite that, it too puts out some unworldly numbers.
It too offers 622hp but torque stands lower at 850Nm.
However, unlike the Turbo S, the Turbo puts out 670hp when you select the overboost function.
The Turbo though is slightly more affordable than the Turbo S, with prices starting from a little over RM963,000.
This was the first time I got to drive both Taycans.
There was a similar drive event held at SIC when Porsche introduced the Taycan to the Malaysian market earlier this year.
But back then, we had passed our seat to legendary Malaysian rally driver Karamjit Singh to get his thoughts on a car the world was raving about.
You can watch that video below.
As a first timer behind the wheel of the Taycan, it was the acceleration that really blew me away, especially in the Turbo S.
Handling too was sharp but that is to be expected of a Porsche.
But you really do feel the weight of the car because the Taycan weighs over two tons.
You feel this going into corners, but then the acceleration more than makes up for it.
The brakes too felt spongy, but that is a typical character of electric and hybrid cars as the brake pedal also regenerates the batteries.
So you don’t really feel the initial bite of the brakes, and if you get caught out by it, you could end up with an expensive repair bill.
But once you learn to trust the brakes though, you realise that behind all that sponginess is the same iconic Porsche anchors that the German marque is so well known for.
We later jumped into the Cayenne for a spot of off-roading.
The off-road section was a purpose built course on the outskirt of the SIC.
The course was initially designed for dirt bikes.
But it was also a perfect place to display the Cayenne’s off-roading abilities.
In just about 300-500 metres, we found out that the Cayenne could hold its own in gravel, some loose mud, and some very uneven surfaces.
This involved some dabbing on the massive touch screen at the centre to raise the ride height of the Cayenne.
And some further dabbing was needed to tell the Cayenne that you were about to take it off-road.
And then you drive.
The off-road section is where the Cayenne truly put on a show as it sent power to wheels that were planted on the ground.
And sent zero power to wheels that were hanging in the air.
Intelligent is an understatement.
But I wasn’t too surprised here, because the Cayenne has already been proven to be a very capable off-roader plenty of times before.
If you didn’t already know, a couple of years ago, a few rally teams had contested the Cayenne in the gruesome Trans-Siberian rally that takes place in Russia, Siberia and Mongolia every spring.
It is a hardcore 4,400km rally where only road-legal cars with a few modifications are allowed.
The Porsche Cayenne won that race three years in a row.
There’s even a special edition Cayenne to commemorate that feat.
So there really is no better testament to the Cayenne’s off-roading capabilities than that.
But the Cayenne is unlikely to be used in such a manner, but just in case you needed to drive your Cayenne to the end of the world, know that you could.
After spending time with the Cayenne, we jumped into the Macan – a baby-SUV named after a Tiger.
This is another SUV that does not need any introduction, but it was a refreshment of sorts to show what it is really capable of doing when the road opens up.
First the Macan GTS.
I love Porsche’s GTS models because it’s a nod to what cars were like in the past.
Fun beasts that make you miss the old times when men drank their whisky (or whiskey if you’re so inclined) without worrying about it being fake, and chased girls without their antics being posted on social media.
There was a time when the GTS models were pure naturally-aspirated models.
But times have changed and the Macan GTS is now a twin-turbo’d V6 model with a 2.9-litre engine putting out 437hp and 550Nm of torque.
It’s still capable of some brutal numbers though with the 0-100km/h sprint seen off in a little over four seconds with a top speed rated at 272km/h.
These are numbers that were once associated with the top of the line Macan Turbo.
Of course, we were not given a chance to fully exploit its potential.
Just enough to tell you that acceleration was fantastic, and that it makes some encouraging sounds along the way, and that for an SUV that weighs a little under two tons, it actually handles quite well.
I was quite surprised by the brakes though because they lacked that initial bite.
Porsche didn’t give us the spec sheet of all the cars we drove but I suspect the Macan GTS had regular brakes fitted rather than the optional Porsche Surface Coated Brakes or the Ceramic Brakes. Both optional of course.
The Macan Turbo though was a whole different ball game, and that’s the car we got to drive next.
The Macan Turbo is the big dog of the Macan line-up. The Macan you want to have.
It offers the same performance figures as the Macan GTS, and that’s because the updated Turbo model is yet to be introduced.
Despite that, the driving experience between the two is vastly different.
Both cars have twin-turbo engines.
But the engine note in the Turbo is deeper while the GTS has a screaming engine note that mimics a naturally-aspirated engine.
It almost sounds like the sound has been artificially induced and piped into the cabin through the speakers, similar to what Porsche has done with the Taycan.
Artificially induced sounds are not new to the industry, but it is a bit of a let down because there’s nothing better than a raw engine note. Not what a car maker thinks an engine should sound like.
But it is what it is.
And that is quickly overlooked as you put your foot down and the car lurches forward before your brain even registers what is going on.
Jumping from the GTS into the Turbo, we really didn’t think the difference will be all that big. But it is truly vast.
Perhaps it is the way that power is delivered, or how the sound is generated. But the performance in the Macan Turbo is how a Porsche should ideally perform.
Brakes too are much more confidence inspiring in the Turbo model we drove.
We found ourselves braking later and turning in deeper into a corner. A true performance machine the Macan Turbo definitely was.
And that is no surprise considering the Turbo is the flagship model of the Macan line up.
Our experience at the Porsche World Road Show at SIC ended with the Macans.
And though it was similar to the one we attended in 2018/2019, it was still perfectly laid out for us to experience Porsches at their finest.
And if there is one thing we can say about modern Porsches, it is that they are a complete paradox.
On one side you have a race car for the road with the GT3.
And on another side you have a tree-hugging electric supercar in the Taycan Turbo S.
Then you have the ultra-capable go anywhere Cayenne.
And the Macans are the cute in betweens if you don’t want something too big but with fun performance.
If there is one car maker that is completely future-proof to whatever may come in the next 10 years, it would be Porsche.
And there are rumours that Porsche may make an entry into the wonderful world of Formula 1.
Either as an engine supplier or as a works team remains to be seen.
Whatever comes, it is an awesome time to be a Porsche owner.