If you're driving from Los Angeles to Willow Springs International Raceway, you basically have two options. Google Maps will tell you to slog up the 5 Freeway and pick up the 14, which is efficient but dull as hell. Do yourself a favor and take the scenic route through Angeles National Forest. Yeah, this takes a little longer, but you get to drive on some of Southern California's finest roads with beautiful scenery. What's an extra half hour for the sake of a good time?
All this brings me to the Porsche Taycan GTS Sport Turismo which -- how convenient -- I'm driving from Los Angeles to Willow Springs. It's probably not the first Porsche or even the first EV you'd think of for a drive like this, but there's a lot to be said for making the unconventional choice. This car, this road... it's an absolute hoot.
Porsche is only going to offer the Taycan Sport Turismo in GTS trim in the US -- for now, anyway. I'm told other countries will get additional ST variants, but none are confirmed for American consumption. Why? Porsche doesn't want to have too much overlap with the Taycan's other wagonback variant, the slightly more butch and SUV-like. That's also why -- you guessed it -- Porsche isn't offering the Cross Turismo in GTS spec.
There are only a few differences between the Turismo twins. The Cross Turismo has an 0.8-inch higher ride height, while the Sport Turismo's stance is the same as the Taycan sedan. The Sport Turismo also ditches the Cross Turismo's body cladding and gets the slightly different look of the GTS' Sport Design exterior trim, rounded out with your choice of 20- or 21-inch wheels.
Like the Cross Turismo, all US-spec Sport Turismos will come standard with a panoramic sunroof. And hey, good news, Porsche added quick-working electrochromic dimming to the wagon's huge glass panel, which adequately blocks out the sun on bright days. You can even half-dim it for a cool semi-transparent look. Fingers crossed that Porsche brings this tech to the rest of the Taycan range ASAP.
Roof aside, the Turismos' interiors are the same. The Sport gets standard GTS goodies like Race-Tex suede, an upgraded stereo and 18-way power seats. The model's updated Porsche Communication Management tech finally includes wiredin addition to wired and wireless . And just like the Cross Turismo, the Sport Turismo has 15.8 cubic feet of cargo space behind the rear seats, which expands to 42.8 if you fold 'em flat. Pretty useful.
The GTS' battery is the same one you'll find in the Taycan 4S, Turbo and Turbo S: a 93.4-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion pack that sends power to electric motors mounted on each axle. Maximum output -- achieved via launch control -- is 590 horsepower and 626 pound-feet of torque. And since only 75 pounds separate the Sport Turismo from the GTS sedan, Porsche quotes the same 3.5-second 0-to-60-mph time for both cars.
My Carmine Red Sport Turismo is equipped with Porsche's Dynamic Chassis Control adaptive dampers and rear-axle steering -- performance options that really ought to be standard as part of the GTS package. At least the GTS treatment includes must-haves like a self-leveling air suspension, torque-vectoring tech and Porsche's ubiquitous Sport Chrono upgrade which unlocks a Sport Plus driving mode, launch control and more.
Opting to take the Taycan GTS Sport Turismo on the better of the two LA-to-Willow routes is an exercise in good judgment. (Why Willow Springs? That's where I.) In the canyons separating Los Angeles from Palmdale, the GTS absolutely scoots. Quick, communicative steering lets me dive into corners with confidence and the standard adaptive air suspension keeps the Sport Turismo hunkered down in tight turns. The powertrain's instant electric torque continues to be an addicting source of endorphins, too.
High-speed hijinks aren't the only trick up the Sport Turismo's sleeve. If you do choose to take the boring highway commute, you'll be rewarded with a quiet cabin and plush highway ride. Strong lift-off regenerative braking continues to be nonexistent in the Taycan, which is a bummer for one-pedal driving fans like me. Oh, and the GTS has Porsche's Electric Sport Sound audio accompaniment, which you can turn up loud if you're into futuristic audio cosplay or just turn off if you're... not.
What's all this EV hotness cost? $134,650 including $1,350 for destination, which is obviously a ton of money, but not inappropriate for something so well built and enjoyable. The GTS Sport Turismo is more functional than the Taycan sedan and only costs $1,900 more which, to me, makes it a no-brainer. Why go for something conventional? The Sport Turismo is a far more interesting choice.