Fans of Porsche’s Panamera Sport Turismo concept from the 2012 Paris Auto Show rejoice, the automaker has heeded your calls and is putting the stunning show car into production. Our latest spy shots show a late-stage prototype.
The general shape looks virtually identical to what we saw on the Panamera Sport Turismo concept, though camouflage gear still hides most of the final details. This particular prototype is for the high-performance Turbo variant, as indicated by the uprated wheels, tires and brakes plus the square-shaped, quad-exhaust tips.
The car is essentially a wagon but Porsche won’t want you to call it that. Instead, expect something like Shooting Brake or Estate or perhaps even Gran Turismo to be used in the nomenclature. The idea of the car was born from customer feedback, as Porsche has previously said clients are requesting more luggage space than what’s offered by the current Panamera.
2017 Porsche Panamera shooting brake spy shots - Image via S. Baldauf/SB-MedienEnlarge Photo
The second-generation Panamera in general is slightly larger than the current model. It will be the first car based on the Volkswagen Group’s MSB platform for large, front-engined, rear-wheel-drive (with available all-wheel drive) cars. Most next-generation Bentleys are expected to adopt this platform as well, including the next-generation Continental GT which we recently spied. Key benefits of the design are lighter weight and compatibility with electrified powertrains.
The variety of powertrains on offer for the current Panamera is likely to remain, albeit with some all-new engine designs thrown in. The 2014 Panamera S already received a new twin-turbo V-6, and for the second-generation Panamera we should see more potent variants like the GTS and Turbo benefit from a new V-8. A plug-in hybrid model will also be offered once again, but with improved battery technology helping to lower weight and increase capacity. The current Panamera S E-Hybrid weighs a hefty 4,609 pounds.
Adding a Panamera wagon is not without its risks. Mercedes-Benz is said to be dropping its own CLS Shooting Brake after the current generation runs its course due to a lack of sales. Part of the reason is that many buyers in Europe, the strongest market for high-end wagons, are—like the rest of the world—flocking to SUVs.
Porsche Panamera Sport Turismo Concept live photos, 2012 Paris Auto ShowEnlarge Photo
Nevertheless, it appears Porsche sees a place for the car as part of an expanded Panamera family. We’re likely to see another generation of the long-wheelbase Panamera Executive at some point and perhaps even a coupe reviving the 928 nameplate.
The second-generation Panamera is expected to make its debut this October at the 2016 Paris Auto Show. This wagon variant should follow shortly after.