Porsche has shared the first official images of the electric Macan SUV, which has been testing on public roads.
The German firm has called the road trials ‘one of the most important milestones in the development process’ and says prototypes will travel almost 1.9 million miles before the model goes on sale in 2023.
Real-world testing follows extensive virtual development, with Porsche saying it has 20 ‘digital prototypes’ with software that creates accurate simulations. This allows engineers to make constant updates and see how they affect the car without having to build real vehicles, reducing costs and improving sustainability.
The project started about four years ago with the aerodynamics team the first to get their hands on the electric Macan. They have been making adjustments such as tweaking the exterior design and moving internal components to reduce drag and improve the vehicle’s electric range.
Another key aspect of the testing has been cooling, with the batteries needing to be cooler than a typical combustion engine does.
Despite all this technology, real-world testing is still considered vital. Michael Steiner, member of the executive board at Porsche, said: “Endurance testing on closed-off testing facilities and public roads in real-life conditions is still indispensable to ensure that the vehicle structure, operational stability and reliability of hardware, software and all functions meet our high quality standards.”
The new electric Macan will be the first built on Porsche’s new Premium Platform Electric (PPE) underpinnings and is scheduled for launch in 2023. An updated combustion-engined Macan will hit the market later this year, and eventually will be sold alongside the EV.