Porsche is about to expand its lineup with two brand new models. One will be the 918 Spyder
at the top of the range and the other will be this Macan crossover
positioned at the bottom.
The Macan will go on sale in spring 2014, which means we’re likely to see it unveiled at a major international auto show around the end of this year--the most likely being the 2013 Los Angeles Auto Show in November, a favorite of the German automaker.
Production of the Macan will start later this year at Porsche’s plant in Leipzig, Germany. Sharing a platform with the Audi Q5, the Macan will nevertheless be as Porsche as the Cayenne, which itself shares its underpinnings with another Volkswagen Group model, the Touareg.
While the five-door model is the subject of the spy shots, a sportier three-door variant is possible. One of the shots also shows the interior, which features a look similar to the cabin of the Panamera.
The Macan is a crucial model for Porsche, as the automaker expects it to be its top-seller. Sales projections of around 50,000-55,000 units per year have been described by Porsche as "cautious estimates
," and more recently there has been talk that sales numbers could reach as much as 75,000 units per year
. At this level the Macan would represent more than 50 percent of Porsche’s total volume.
The Macan should also be Porsche’s most affordable model, with pricing in the U.S. almost certain to start below the Boxster’s $49,500 starting price. It is possible that the Macan will receive a turbocharged four-cylinder engine
as its base option, making it the first modern Porsche to offer four-cylinder power.
We also expect a range of gasoline V-6 engines to be offered in addition to a 3.0-liter turbodiesel for overseas markets. Of the possible engines, the diesel, rumoured to deliver 300-plus horsepower and 480 pound-feet of torque, is one of the most interesting--though it may not make it to the U.S. A high-performance Macan Turbo prototype
has also been spotted, but we don't expect this model to be available at launch.
As for features, the Macan is expected to come with torque-sensing and torque-vectoring differentials, a PDK dual-clutch transmission and sport-tuned suspension with an optional adjustable ride system.
Key competitors will include the Range Rover Evoque from Land Rover as well as the upcoming X4 from BMW
and GLA from Mercedes-Benz
While you wait for its arrival, be sure to check our previous spy video of a prototype
at the Nürburgring._______________________________________Follow Motor Authority on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.