Even on twisting country roads, the Panamera doesn’t present you with a challenge. On the motorway, it’s an absolute pleasure. Our only real complaint is that adaptive air suspension isn’t standard.
In terms of the engines, even the entry-level turbocharged 2.9-litre petrol engine has serious chops. It packs six cylinder, develops 325bhp, can do 0-62 in 5.7 seconds, and can be specified with four-wheel drive.
If you want more speed, the 4.0-litre, eight cylinder Turbo model delivers a whopping 542bhp, and does the 0-62 sprint in 3.8 seconds. Add launch control, and you can cut that down to 3.5 seconds – which is still nowhere near the fastest Tesla.
If speed matters a lot to you, the diesels aren’t usually worth considering, but the Panamera 4D model is surprisingly quick. It does 0-62 in 5.8 seconds, and delivers as much as 416bhp.
However, if running costs are important to you and one of the reasons you’re looking at a Tesla, the Porsche Panamera Hatchback Hybrid might appeal. It does 0-62 in 4.6 seconds, and officially returns 113mpg economy. It’s also exempt from road tax and can run on pure battery power for 31 miles at speeds up to around 87mph.
The rest of the Panamera range is pretty damn expensive to run, with the smallest petrol engine returning 37mpg and the diesel averaging similar numbers.
So, fuel economy is hardly going to be the Porsche’s strongest suit. Inside, however, it’s as classy as anything else in this review. Its cabin is well appointed, fit and finish is excellent and it looks genuinely beautiful.
The seats are comfortable, the layout is logical and the design is timeless. The analogue rev counter is a nice nod to the past, but we do have an issue with some of the buttons – they’re just too fiddly.
And where the Tesla gets a gigantic screen, the Porsche settles for a more modest 12.3” infotainment touchscreen that doesn’t get all the neat software upgrades of the Model S.
The Porsche Panamera Hatchback is practical, though. Head and legroom is good throughout, 18-way adjustable sports seats are a versatile optional extra as are all-round ventilated massaging seats, while the boot measures 495-litres.
Porsche – £70,924 – £124,505