Porsche is getting its money’s worth from the L.A. auto show, using yesterday’s off-site reception to show off its new Los Angeles Porsche Experience Center – a central hub where the brand will host driving schools, private functions and other events. Today, the reveals continued at the Los Angeles Convention Center, where Porsche showed off its new Panamera Executive range and the hotly anticipated mid-engined 911 RSR race car.
The Panamera Executive features a wheelbase stretched 5.9 inches and is intended for chauffeuring purposes according to Porsche itself. The Panamera Executive is available in 4, 4 E-Hybrid, 4S and Turbo trims, with 330-, 462-, 440-, and 550-hp, respectively. The E-Hybrid version is said to reach 60 mph from a standstill in 4.5 seconds and has an electric-only range of 31 miles. Standard Executive features include a panoramic roof, heated comfort seats front and rear, adaptive air suspension, and a roll-up sunblind. Panamera 4S Executive and Turbo Executive versions also get standard rear-wheel steering, similar to the system in the 911 GT3, and soft close doors. The Turbo variant alone also includes standard LED dynamic lighting and four-zone climate control.
Optionally, the Panamera Executive gets a redesigned rear seating package with a large center console that can house fold-out tables for passengers to work while they ride. Sport design flourishes, as available on the standard Panamera, are also an available option.
Porsche also announced it will add an engine to the standard Panamera range: a 330-hp turbocharged V-6, which makes 20 more horsepower than it did in the previous generation car. The turbo V-6 engine will be available with either rear- or all-wheel drive.
The most exciting news from the L.A. show for those who enjoy doing their own driving was the all-new 911 RSR. This race car has been hotly anticipated, primarily due to rumors that engineers have moved the traditionally rear-mounted engine ahead of the rear axle. The rumors were true and Porsche has gotten special exemptions for what is a fairly major deviation from the road-going 911. Output from the brand-new direct-injected, rigid-valve-drive, flat-six is 510 hp and the transmission is a new six-speed sequential gearbox with paddle shifters. Currently, Porsche has no plans to change the engine position of its road-going 911, as a mid-engined layout would compromise rear seating.
The rest of the 911 RSR was also dramatically revised with fresh carbon fiber bodywork, a top-mounted rear wing inspired by the 919 Hybrid LMP1 race car, and scratch-built suspension. Most body panels are easily replaced through a new quick-release fastener system and the suspension is also more easily serviced on the fly.
Porsche’s 911 has struggled through a difficult race season this year, being hindered by – among other things – balance of performance rulings that have seen the current 911 RSR handicapped. Porsche says it has put more than 35,000 test miles on the new RSR in both Europe and America prior to its debut, which is more testing than any GT race car in the brand’s storied history. The RSR is scheduled for 19 races in 2017 including the 24 Hours of Le Mans and it will make its debut at the 24 Hours of Daytona in January.