With electrified cars now coming in all shapes and sizes – and available to suit every budget – we’ve named the best models in every class. Here we look at the best electric performance car...
Porsche is the reason why there are What Car? Awards. It started after our editorial staff baulked at the pricey V8-powered 928 scooping the 1978 European Car of the Year award, so we created our own to find a more appropriate winner for the masses. Fast-forward to today and you might be wondering if we’ve lost our marbles by giving an award to something costing more than £90,000. But the Porsche Taycan Cross Turismo is no ordinary car.
For starters, it’s fully electric, making it an absolute boon for company car drivers, because emissions form an important part of the benefit-in-kind (BIK) tax calculations. Since the Cross Turismo doesn’t produce any, it’s far more affordable to run than traditional performance models such as the Mercedes-AMG E63.
There are cheaper Taycans, but the Cross Turismo is barely any more than a regular Porsche Taycan 4S that’s been equipped with the larger of its two battery options – something the Cross Turismo gets as standard.
You’re also getting a car with far greater practicality, due to its larger and more accessible estate-like boot. Plus, that extended roofline allows for extra rear head room, so two six-footers can travel back there in greater comfort and a middle seat occupant doesn’t need to stoop.
Despite this more practical body, combined with a raised ride height compared with the regular Taycan, there’s no danger of the Cross Turismo feeling less wieldy. In fact, if you make use of its various driving modes, it’ll do a startlingly good impression of a sports car, with taut body control and precise steering. Meanwhile, the taller suspension gives the Cross Turismo a more compliant ride.
True, quicker versions of the Cross Turismo are available, but most buyers will be blown away by the 4S’s performance. Normal power output is a hearty 483bhp, rising to 563bhp for short periods if you’re doing standing starts with the launch control on. That will get you from 0-62mph in a rapid 4.1sec, with the motorway speed limit arriving shortly after.
The interior is not only a tasteful, high-quality treat but also a tech fest, with a gorgeous curved digital instrument panel ahead of the driver and two touchscreens in the centre. An optional fourth screen can be fitted ahead of the front passenger.
Although the closely related Audi E-tron GT is just as quick and a little cheaper, it doesn’t feel as sharp to drive as the Taycan and can be had only in less practical four-door coupé form. If anything can convince performance car buyers that there’s an alternative to a loud, fuel-guzzling petrol engine, the Cross Turismo is it.