What's the best electric vehicle for shaming supercars? | Top Gear
BBC TopGear
BBC TopGear
Subscribe to Top Gear magazine
Sign up to our Top Gear Magazine
Tuesday 26th September

What's the best electric vehicle for shaming supercars?

The Porsche Taycan Turbo S puts the 'fast' in 'fasten your seatbelts'

Published: 02 Feb 2022

It’s one of the best things about an electric car – that instant slug of full-on torque, wheels scrabble then the rubber bites into the road, none of the other drivers can see your Nissan Leaf for dust away from the traffic lights. 

We might have laughed at all those Reva G-Wiz drivers weaving about the road into the paths of overtaking cyclists, hunched painfully behind the wheel, those hairiest of hair-shirted early adopters. But it’s clear now that these were performance pioneers, in the same way that someone taking a corner too fast in their Benz Patent-Motorwagen was setting us all inexorably on the road to world rally championships and Grand Prix glory. 

Advertisement - Page continues below

And sure there have been upstarts and disrupters on the electric path so far, but of course we all knew that the big daddies of car making would come through with the sort of tech that would make others weep. 

Porsche has spent decades and decades refining the 911 formula that people said couldn’t work. It positively crushed the naysayers under the bluff front end of its Cayenne performance SUV when they said that pseudo-4x4s were too dumpy to drive well. 

Latterly the Stuttgart-based firm has electrified us all with the delights of its Taycan EV, a car that juggles the old-fashioned dynamic delights of a Porsche with the brave new world of electromobility. Critics will wiffle on about the lack of engine noise and aural titivation, or they complain in the same whiny tones as an electric motor about the fact that the Taycan has a Turbo model in its line-up when it doesn’t even have a turbo in its engine. “Watt’s going on”, they say. “Ohmigod”, they cry. 

Maybe the Taycan Turbo S doesn’t even have a turbo, but with 751bhp on overboost you definitely won’t even care. A 2.8secs 0–62mph run will leave most other drivers sobbing pathetically in its wake – it’s basically a bargain at £139k and the polar ice caps will practically refreeze themselves as you thunder along. What’s not to like? You’ll be the envy of all the sad chumps at the charge points. 

Advertisement - Page continues below

With all these million pound electric hypercars being launched all over the place promising the sort of performance that would embarrass a Japanese bullet train, the Taycan offers a more down to earth, accessible and homely vibe. It’s an everyday supercar, dressed in a cardigan and slippers. It’s friendly, if it were a person it would carry toffees in its pocket to offer small children before sprinting off up the road just because it could. 

Of course, the eventual elephant in the room will be the looming Model S Plaid and its claimed 2.1secs 0–62mph run that looks set to up the ante at some point in 2022. Or 2023. It’s definitely the budget option at a smidge under £120k, but you feel the cost savings in certain areas, like the fact that it won’t even come with a full steering wheel. 

Whatever side you might land on, it’s clear that even with electric power the performance executive car market remains as turbocharged as ever. 

Top Gear

Get all the latest news, reviews and exclusives, direct to your inbox.

More from Top Gear

See more on Porsche

Promoted Content

Subscribe to the Top Gear Newsletter

Get all the latest news, reviews and exclusives, direct to your inbox.

By clicking subscribe, you agree to receive news, promotions and offers by email from Top Gear and BBC Studios. Your information will be used in accordance with our privacy policy.

BBC TopGear

Try BBC Top Gear Magazine

Get your first 5 issues for £5