Porsche is fleshing out its Panamera lineup by incorporating the Sport Turismo into the GTS trim and slathering on an extra 20 horsepower. Slotting in just below the Turbo, GTS-trimmed Panameras place an added emphasis on performance — swapping the base 3.0-liter V6 for a less rowdy version of the 4.0-liter V8, without forcing customers to write a check in excess of $150,000. It sounds a little odd saying this, considering the model’s elevated price points, but the GTS is the “value option” for serious enthusiasts.
While we’re happy to see a peppier GTS, the big get is that Porsche is willing to bless the wagon with a more-affordable V8. Hopefully it means we’ll see more of them on the road, as these rigs are exceptionally easy on the eyes.
The manufacturer claims the new GTS models should arrive at dealerships in the second half of 2019. Beneath their hoods, newly installed V8s boast 453 horsepower and 457 pound-feet of torque. That’s a significant step up from the base model’s 330 hp and 331 lb-ft — though it can be had with more oomph and all-wheel drive if you option the 4S.
Porsche claims 3.9 seconds to 60 mph for the GTS, thanks to a little help from its fancy all-wheel-drive system and eight-speed PDK transmission. Maximum velocities are estimated to be around 181 mph for the Panamera GTS and 179 mph for the longer Sport Turismo.
Of course, it’s not just about straight-line speed. Owners will also enjoy Porsche’s Advanced Suspension Management (PASM), upsized brakes, and the Sport Chrono Package as standard. The GTS will also have some disparate exterior pieces to help set it apart, an upgraded interior with Alcantara everything, 20-inch wheels, sport exhaust, and an entirely new head-up display that the company is claiming is highly configurable.
Even though Porsche’s digitized order form has yet to be updated on its website, the company says it’s still ready to take them now. Prices begin at $129,350 for Panamera GTS and $135,550 for the wagon variant, excluding $1,050 for delivery.
Expensive, to be sure, but a comparative bargain when you realize it’s the more-complete performance package. The 4S has to crest the six-figure mark so you can have Audi’s excellent 2.9-liter V6 and a second turbocharger, but the GTS offers more of everything (inside and out) for a markup that’s less than the price of a new Subaru Impreza.