Porsche has only five distinct models, but the Stuttgart-based automaker is famously devoted to subtle (and not-so-subtle) diversity. There are four versions each of the Boxster, Cayman, and Cayenne, and the 911 boasts a staggering 23 variants, from the $79,000 Carrera to the $245,000 GT2 RS. And the newest name in the Porsche range, the Panamera, is getting up to speed fast. With V-6, V-8, turbo V-8, and gasoline-electric hybrid power, and rear- or all-wheel drive, the Panamera family currently stands at six members. Make that seven with the arrival of the Panamera Turbo S.
The S makes use of the standard Panamera Turbo’s 4.8-liter V-8, which is fitted with a pair of more efficient turbochargers featuring feather-light titanium-aluminum turbines. The revised engine belts out 550 hp and 553 lbs of torque—a jump of 50 hp and 37 ft lbs over the already fearsome Panamera Turbo. Power is delivered to all four wheels through Porsche’s 7-speed dual-clutch gearbox and all-wheel drive, and with the selection of Sport mode or track-ready Sport Plus mode, the engine management system allows periods of turbo overboost, augmenting torque to 590 ft lbs. That’s enough to deliver this 4,400-pound five-door to 60 mph in a blistering 3.6 seconds, making it the quickest production sedan on the planet (though with a 190 mph top speed, it’s not quite the fastest; that honor still belongs to Bentley’s 200 mph Continental Flying Spur Speed). Visually, the Panamera Turbo S is admirably restrained, with unique 20-inch wheels, aerodynamic side skirts, and an elegantly upgraded interior. It’s priced at a cool $173,200—a $37,500 premium over the standard Turbo. (porsche.com/usa)