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Porsche teases Taycan in sketches alongside design chief interview

Michael Mauer is ready to show Porsche's first EV to the world.

Its angles and stance are a little exaggerated because it's a sketch, but boy howdy, this car never gets tiring to look at.

Porsche has been teasing the Taycan, formerly known as the Mission E, for well over a year now. Some teaser campaigns can leave people so burnt out by the end that they don't even care about the car making its debut. But the Taycan is a wildly important car for Porsche, and enthusiasts are happy to soak up whatever new information is out there, and there's a bit tucked away inside a new interview with Porsche's design chief.

Porsche on Tuesday unveiled three new sketches of the Taycan. They're not anything we haven't seen before, though; the two quarter-angle sketches show a design familiar to anyone who's seen any of the Taycan's concept forms over the past couple years. The detail picture of the headlights is perhaps the most interesting bit. Headlight design gone absolutely wild in the luxury space over the last half a decade, and this sketch is no exception, showing off some inner-light details that look positively architectural.

While the pictures might not tell us anything interesting, Porsche also published an internal interview with Michael Mauer, the automaker's head of design. While some of his design comments are pretty straightforward -- they wanted to keep sports-car proportions, for example -- there are some interesting tidbits tucked away in the interview.

Without the need for tailpipes, Mauer's team had more freedom in arranging the rear diffuser for both function and aesthetics.


Striking a balance between batteries and seating position was tough, according to Mauer, because they wanted the batteries and the occupants both as low as possible, without forcing the latter to assume a kind of constantly-reclined, motorsport-style seating position. To fix this, Porsche implemented "foot garages," two recesses in the back that allow passengers' feet to land at a more normal position. Another interesting nugget is that the headlights are actually inside functional air intakes that channel air from the front to behind the wheel housings.

Mauer also said in the interview that Porsche was considering starting its electric revolution with an SUV, given how much easier the packaging would be, thanks to SUVs' tall body panels and seating position. But the company eventually settled on a sports car "to make a clear statement" that Porsche doesn't necessarily need to change in order to deliver an EV.

Porsche will offer the Taycan in a variety of trims, with its top-tier spec sending more than 600 horsepower to all four wheels, which should put its 0-to-60-mph time under 3.5 seconds. By NEDC standards, its range should be around 310 miles. Demand is already through the roof, enough to where Porsche announced in January that it would double production output from 20,000 vehicles per year to 40,000. If crossovers are more your hang, there's a taller Cross Turismo variant scheduled to debut in late 2020. As for when we will actually see the production-spec Taycan, well, your guess is as good as mine.

This isn't just a headlight. It's also a fully functional air intake.

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