HigherLevel

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I got to spend a weekend with the Taycan Turbo demo car from the local dealership while I wait for my build. My daily driver is a Tesla Model 3 Performance, and my other occasional driver is the Macan S. Before these cars, various BMWs, Audis, and the like.

I have to say, the Taycan is an amazing drivers car. If you like driving, this is the one for you. Tons of reviews out there confirm this, so I won't go into detail on all of that. What I did want to highlight is just how close the Model 3 P is to the overall experience, and how many things it actually does better, for 1/3 the price. I know tons of comparisons have been made with the Model S, but to me that's last-gen tech that Tesla hasn't put much effort into in years. The model 3 is current. I thought this might be helpful information for those who are just researching and assuming the Taycan is superior in all regards, because it's not.

What the Model 3 P does better:

Launch control: It's cool on the Taycan, but having 100% of the power available with nothing needed to "activate it" is better. I can stomp the 3P and it goes without any hesitation.

2nd Gear: I heavily dislike the use of 2nd gear in anything under 60 mph. Driving around town, I actually felt a "thunk" as though I was back in an ICE car downshifting to go. It's not a constant thing, but it's noticeable. If we need 2nd gear to achieve better high-speed fuel economy and power band, keep it for those things. In all other situations, it sucks compared to how the 3P feels at low speed. I never want to start in 2nd gear on an EV, ever.

Interior dims make the 3P feel bigger, especially more trunk space, yet the overall exterior dims are smaller. I'm trying to figure out how this happens that a larger car actually has less interior storage space, but there it is.

Infotainment: The tech looks fancy, but functions like grandma's ipad that she hasn't updated in a decade. Control response is slow, dials on the steering wheel for volume sometimes lag terribly, and overall intuitiveness is way behind Tesla. Navigation in particular just needs to take a page from Tesla and Google and copy them. Just make it the same, it's better and there's no point trying to do your own thing. Everyone just excuses this with, "well I just use Apple carplay." Cool, I have Android. And I never use it on the Tesla because the Tesla works as well as my phone. There's no excuse that a $160,000 car has infotainment function worse than a $300 ipad.

The haptic feedback buttons are cool, but why did I feel like I had to double-tap them every time, or hold the button down, to get them to do anything? The Tesla has no haptic feedback, but a generous target touch area that just works every time you press it.

Interior: Yes, the Taycan feels much more premium, but the racetex is not it. If you get racetex, the microfiber steering wheel actually feels cheap and looks cheap. I'd even argue it's slippery. I much prefer Tesla's interior to the racetex, but this is just an opinion compared to other areas where the 3P is more objectively better.

Additional functionality: Dog mode, Sentry mode, etc...all things that were added after I bought the car, and all very useful. I basically have a built-in fancy security system, and I can bring my dog places and leave him in the car as needed.

Single-pedal driving: This is a superior way to drive, and the Taycan should make it an option.

What the Taycan does better:

The electric sport sound: Just an opinion, but I think it's incredibly cool. I love engine noise though, so missing that on the Tesla, this brings back that feeling of power.

Ride: The air suspension on the Taycan is lightyears better than what comes with the 3P. The huge difference from one setting to the next is really cool and much more dramatic than any other air suspension I've used.

Handling: There is no comparison here. Taycan is it.

Looks: I might not even be here if the 3P looked cooler. The fact that it looks like your basic grocery-getter is what pushed me to seek other options. The Taycan looks like a sports car, yet has the functionality of a 4-door.

Stability at speed: With the 3P, you know when you're doing 90 mph. With the Taycan, it feels like you're still holding it back. It wants to do 100+mph while you're still sipping your morning coffee, and seems like you need to be doing 120+ before you even need to pay attention. It's tied up with the ride/suspension, but you have ultimate confidence at speed with this car, way beyond the "go kart on steroids" feeling with the 3P.

Buttons. It has dedicated buttons for climate control and other things that shouldn't have to be accessed via a menu like the Tesla requires from you.

Old arguments that don't matter:

Repeatability of launches. The 3P can repeatedly launch just like the Taycan. It has better cooling than the S and doesn't have those problems.

Charging speed: They charge around the same speed or close enough it doesn't matter. Network might matter to some who do road trips. It doesn't matter for me though because they have chargers everywhere in the state I drive in.

Service. Either one will come to your house to handle a fix. I've had 1 issue in 1 year of ownership with the Tesla and never had to take it in. Service just doesn't matter as much with EVs.

Build Quality: My Model 3 had no noticeable issues. It's had 1 minor item that needed fixed. The demo Taycan with 2k miles on it had two issues that the dealership hadn't fixed in the 3 weeks between initial test drive and weekend loan. Part of this is unfair because the 3P was a year or two into production, and the Taycan is still on its initial run. But still, the reputation of early model or first run production Tesla's seems to be something people just assume affects the entire brand, but it doesn't.

Tesla is an "appliance" for people who don't like driving. This is the dumbest argument I hear, because it completely discounts all of the glowing reviews from auto mags for the 3P. I like driving and bought the Model 3 without any of the "self-driving" options.

Overall

I'm still really happy with the decision to purchase the Taycan, but can't help but feel it's not an upgrade in some small but annoying areas. Hopefully Porsche puts some priority on software development the same way Tesla has, and can shake free of the (seemingly long-running) stigma of great cars with sub-par tech.
 
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PanameraFrank

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Thanks for the comparison!

I personally disagree with several of your Tesla pros, though.

For me, one pedal driving is vastly inferior to the way the Taycan operates. This is definitely a "which flavor is better" opinion, though.

The Model 3 looks like a child's toy, that's why the interior space/storage is better. They sacrificed looks for practicality and even then the difference is minor and probably never enough to matter. Has anyone ever filled a Model 3 to the point where that extra few cubic feet wouldn't have fit in the Taycan?

Launch control & second gear being a plus for the Model 3 is a headscratcher for me. Not accurate. The Model 3 drives more artificially, which might be what you see as a positive and definitely some people will agree, but the Taycan set up is superior as a driver's car.

You are correct that the Model 3 infotainment is faster and snappier. However, it's also insanely ugly (in my opinion) and the additional features you mention are gimmicky. But I also don't really understand why people put such a stress on functionality of an infotainment (are people driving or are they playing on an iPad??) and I'll take that much more aesthetically pleasing system. The fact that I can control the things I really need to right in front of me without going into the infotainment (driving mode, suspension, etc..) is a huge plus in the Taycan for me and balances out any infotainment lag.

Service & build quality. Sorry, no, this is simply false. There are numerous horror stories of Tesla service & build quality, old AND new, and you can't compare it to Porsche which is a leader in both categories. I'm glad you have been lucky with your Tesla but I can personally attest to plenty of people in the last 2 years that have been nowhere near as lucky. Tesla is definitely much better than it used to be and certainly not a deal breaker, but it's still a bottom third manufacturer for service/build quality.

Overall the Model 3 is a better performance car than people give it credit for in terms of pure numbers but the ride, handling, and overall aesthetics & quality are world's worse than the Taycan. It feels like half (or less) of the car the Taycan is. Which is fair given it's price.
 
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Thanks for the comparison!

I personally disagree with several of your Tesla pros, though.

For me, one pedal driving is vastly inferior to the way the Taycan operates. This is definitely a "which flavor is better" opinion, though.

The Model 3 looks like a child's toy, that's why the interior space/storage is better. They sacrificed looks for practicality and even then the difference is minor and probably never enough to matter. Has anyone ever filled a Model 3 to the point where that extra few cubic feet wouldn't have fit in the Taycan?

Launch control & second gear being a plus for the Model 3 is a headscratcher for me. Not accurate. The Model 3 drives more artificially, which might be what you see as a positive and definitely some people will agree, but the Taycan set up is superior as a driver's car.

You are correct that the Model 3 infotainment is faster and snappier. However, it's also insanely ugly (in my opinion) and the additional features you mention are gimmicky. But I also don't really understand why people put such a stress on functionality of an infotainment (are people driving or are they playing on an iPad??) and I'll take that much more aesthetically pleasing system. The fact that I can control the things I really need to right in front of me without going into the infotainment (driving mode, suspension, etc..) is a huge plus in the Taycan for me and balances out any infotainment lag.

Service & build quality. Sorry, no, this is simply false. There are numerous horror stories of Tesla service & build quality, old AND new, and you can't compare it to Porsche which is a leader in both categories. I'm glad you have been lucky with your Tesla but I can personally attest to plenty of people in the last 2 years that have been nowhere near as lucky. Tesla is definitely much better than it used to be and certainly not a deal breaker, but it's still a bottom third manufacturer for service/build quality.

Overall the Model 3 is a better performance car than people give it credit for in terms of pure numbers but the ride, handling, and overall aesthetics & quality are world's worse than the Taycan. It feels like half (or less) of the car the Taycan is. Which is fair given it's price.
Cool, thanks for your opinion too! I'd honestly like to hear you flesh it out more.

What don't you like about 1-pedal driving? In the reviews I've seen, I thought this was pretty much a universally agreed-upon thing. Why touch the brake unless you have to? It's essentially less "work" to drive the car. A couple of days of this on a Tesla and you start to understand how much better it is. At the very least, it should be a setting on the Taycan.

What do you see as artificial about having instant 100% power under all circumstances and without special "launch" conditions? To me that's just an improvement over something that isn't needed anymore like it was on an ICE car. Like the word "artificial" connotes that the old way of how the ICE works is how an EV should work, but not really a descriptor of why one is worse than the other.

For the infotainment, it's one of those things that I would have agreed with you on before owning my Tesla. After owning it, you realize how many little things are annoyances you avoid on other cars, such as navigation. I'm frequently trying to avoid heavy traffic, or going to a place I've never been, and I rely on navigation 100% of the time I'm in the car, even going to places I know so that I can avoid traffic problems. This is big for me. It functions -much- better on the Tesla.

I also can use a voice command and play any song I want at any time. That's useful.

Yes, fart mode is a gimmick. Sentry mode and Dog mode are not. Sentry is like having a very expensive alarm system on the car, utilizing all cameras and recording any problems. It also functions as a very nice dashcam and saves video clips on horn honk for future use as evidence. Dog mode we've used on road trips before where we'd otherwise have had to leave the dog with a relative or at home. These are real things that have real value, and you get used to having them.

Interior space is important if you golf much, if you have kids and go anywhere even remotely close for a trip, etc.... I golf often. Two sets of clubs won't fit unless I fold the seats down. Add a walking cart and there goes the entire backseat. Now let's try two sets of clubs, two suitcases, and a bunch of kids crap and a dog. Now we're not driving the Taycan. Just saying, interior space has value and somehow the Taycan's is minimal given the size of the vehicle.

Build quality I agree that past issues have created a reputation for Tesla.
 

porsche_coyote

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Cool, thanks for your opinion too! I'd honestly like to hear you flesh it out more.

What don't you like about 1-pedal driving? In the reviews I've seen, I thought this was pretty much a universally agreed-upon thing. Why touch the brake unless you have to? It's essentially less "work" to drive the car. A couple of days of this on a Tesla and you start to understand how much better it is. At the very least, it should be a setting on the Taycan.

[...]
I know my perspective on the one-pedal driving question comes down to more than taste. Full disclosure: I currently daily-drive a BMW i3, which has fairly aggressive lift-throttle recuperation. I actually do like the experience when driving around town.

That said, I really hate it for 'performance' driving for the simple reason that it's actually harder to do when I have to think about the fact that releasing the throttle will actually effectively brake the car (at least in most respects), rather than knowing that braking is something I explicitly control with the brake pedal. I have to spend far more effort carefully controlling the throttle pedal while using the brakes in order to get the desired 'idle coast' result. It's not the end of the world, and I'm not saying you can't drive cars with one-pedal driving in a fast and spirited manner, just that it's more effort to do it with precise control.

I don't think this is a major factor in daily driving, and I do wish that Porsche had created a better option for activating a one-pedal experience. But I do believe that Porsche's view that you should brake with the brake pedal and accelerate with the accelerator pedal is rooted in a sound principle.
 

bangersandmash

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For me it’s just a case that there are too many Tesla Taxi’s around, so I would never buy one. aside from that they are both probably functional machines. But never seen a Porsche taxi which is a plus.
 

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That is the key point:

That said, I really hate it for 'performance' driving for the simple reason that it's actually harder to do when I have to think about the fact that releasing the throttle will actually effectively brake the car (at least in most respects), rather than knowing that braking is something I explicitly control with the brake pedal. I have to spend far more effort carefully controlling the throttle pedal while using the brakes in order to get the desired 'idle coast' result.
 

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Service. Either one will come to your house to handle a fix. I've had 1 issue in 1 year of ownership with the Tesla and never had to take it in. Service just doesn't matter as much with EVs.
i don’t have a Tesla, but know many that do, and I’ve never heard one good thing about their service. They do not come fix your car in my area AFAIK, and the service centers are few and far between. I have a co-worker who’s charging cable stopped working and they wouldn’t even ship him a replacement. He lives an hour from the service center.
 

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I understand 1-pedal driving when the goal is to make the driving as "convenient" as possible for city commuters.

For someone who actually drives for the driving experience and wants precise control of everything at all times, especially when you're driving fast, I don't get it at all.

Important disclaimer: I have never driven an electric car. Any electric car. When I get my Taycan in 2 weeks that'll be the first time.

So, I can't actually be sure what I think. But in the axis of chill out driving to spirited driving, I'm almost as far into the spirited driving end you can get. So can't really see how 1-pedal driving would work for me.

My favorite way to visit the local hypermarket is to go on the highway at max acceleration, go fast, then coast all the way there. Almost works, I bet with Taycan I can actually coast all the way with the no-regen mode lol (so little friction).

Interesting to see which mode I prefer in the end, the no-regen or small regen or auto mode. I will certainly report on this later.
 

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I understand 1-pedal driving when the goal is to make the driving as "convenient" as possible for city commuters.

For someone who actually drives for the driving experience and wants precise control of everything at all times, especially when you're driving fast, I don't get it at all.

Important disclaimer: I have never driven an electric car. Any electric car. When I get my Taycan in 2 weeks that'll be the first time.

So, I can't actually be sure what I think. But in the axis of chill out driving to spirited driving, I'm almost as far into the spirited driving end you can get. So can't really see how 1-pedal driving would work for me.

My favorite way to visit the local hypermarket is to go on the highway at max acceleration, go fast, then coast all the way there. Almost works, I bet with Taycan I can actually coast all the way with the no-regen mode lol (so little friction).

Interesting to see which mode I prefer in the end, the no-regen or small regen or auto mode. I will certainly report on this later.
You just don’t want a spirts car to auto regenerate!! Much prefer the Porsche method which is actually better than other manufactures version anyway.
 

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Stability at speed: With the 3P, you know when you're doing 90 mph. With the Taycan, it feels like you're still holding it back. It wants to do 100+mph while you're still sipping your morning coffee, and seems like you need to be doing 120+ before you even need to pay attention. It's tied up with the ride/suspension, but you have ultimate confidence at speed with this car, way beyond the "go kart on steroids" feeling with the 3P.
+100
 
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I understand 1-pedal driving when the goal is to make the driving as "convenient" as possible for city commuters.

For someone who actually drives for the driving experience and wants precise control of everything at all times, especially when you're driving fast, I don't get it at all.

Important disclaimer: I have never driven an electric car. Any electric car. When I get my Taycan in 2 weeks that'll be the first time.

So, I can't actually be sure what I think. But in the axis of chill out driving to spirited driving, I'm almost as far into the spirited driving end you can get. So can't really see how 1-pedal driving would work for me.

My favorite way to visit the local hypermarket is to go on the highway at max acceleration, go fast, then coast all the way there. Almost works, I bet with Taycan I can actually coast all the way with the no-regen mode lol (so little friction).

Interesting to see which mode I prefer in the end, the no-regen or small regen or auto mode. I will certainly report on this later.
The thing people aren't really understanding about 1-pedal driving is that it's not an on/off switch where braking starts immediately as you let off. Even in spirited driving, it's useful and good to have in many situations.

With every car, when you press down on the "gas" pedal, it accelerates the car according to how hard you press the pedal. With 1-pedal driving, you can very precisely control how much acceleration you want at all times, and as you let off, at some point it starts to feel like mild braking. This is excellent for daily driving as you can often-times play a game of scrubbing off just enough speed to take a corner without braking, or come to a complete stop at a light without having to ever touch the brake.

With the Taycan, you press the brake to engage stronger regen, and at some point it starts to actually use the brakes. You're not in control of that though, the car is. Maybe with enough experience you can figure out how hard to press the brakes for just regen and not use the pads.

For track driving, it might be better to turn off regen. I haven't seen any comparisons yet to know. But for most of us, track driving is 1% or less of how we use this car.
 

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160km/h in the Taycan = going to buy strawberries from the local farmer, while talking with your wife about the birthday party of your four-year-old.

Stability at speed: With the 3P, you know when you're doing 90 mph. With the Taycan, it feels like you're still holding it back. It wants to do 100+mph while you're still sipping your morning coffee, and seems like you need to be doing 120+ before you even need to pay attention. It's tied up with the ride/suspension, but you have ultimate confidence at speed with this car, way beyond the "go kart on steroids" feeling with the 3P.
 



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