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2017 Porsche Macan GTS First Drive | The quick crossover proves itself worthy on Pikes Peak

2017 Porsche Macan GTS First Drive | The quick crossover proves itself worthy on Pikes Peak
2017 Porsche Macan GTS First Drive | The quick crossover proves itself worthy on Pikes Peak

Zebulon Pike, the military commander and adventurer for whom America's best-known ridge is mentioned, never contacted "his" peak, even though he tried. Over 200 year later, with a grinning so giddy that I blame it on the thin breeze at 14,114 feet, I crested the summit of Pikes Peak a tick over 14 instants after leaving the starting line. I was behind the wheel of "the worlds largest" fun-to-drive crossover anyone has ever built: the Porsche Macan GTS.

I can't take ascribe for what must be one of the most wonderful unmodified sprints to the meridian. That goes to Pikes Peak mythology Jeff Zwart, who led a battalion of the reporters in Porsche's latest Macan up the hugely necessitating paved artery. Zwart wasn't piloting a Macan GTS; instead, he was behind the wheel of the 911 GT2 he drove back in 2002 when much of the itinerary was gravel. Today's pavement provisions more control but too less room for misstep, Zwart told us. Unforgiving , he called the mountain. That's just what you want to hear at 6:30 a.m. when Zwart, two gondolas in front of you, makes off at a racing start.

Pressed eventually, Zwart acknowledged he drove at a fraction of his racing pace while juggling two radios( one to communicate with us and one for park rangers to notify him to wildlife on the road) and changing a manual transmission. Strapped into a Macan GTS, nonetheless, I saw the expedition slew stressful- but that's because of the blind recess, the narrow artery, the frost-heaved pavement, the blinding sunbathe, and, of course, those unforgiving drops-off. The polished GTS, which slots in between the mainstream Macan S and the bonkers Macan Turbo, testified unflappable.

Of the Macan flavors, which will soon include a four-cylinder basi mannequin, the GTS is best suited to engrave through the Rockies. Its 3.0 -liter, twin-turbo V6 comes from the Macan S, but Porsche dials its increase from 14 to 17.4 psi, imparting output to 360 horsepower at 6,000 rpm( up 20) and 369 pound-feet of torque from 1,650 to 4,000 rpm( up 30 ). The only gearbox available is the PDK( Porsche Doppelkupplung ) seven-speed dual-clutch transmission with Comfort, Sport, and Sport Plus modes.

In addition to the influence mount, the GTS gets a standard air suspension that sits 10 millimeters lower than the optional version for the S and the Turbo. Front brakes cribbed from the Turbo and a switchable sport deplete with a single flapper valve round out the performance changes. Contribute the breeze postponement, 20 -inch composite wheels, and a few cosmetic goodies standard on the GTS to an S, and what was a $12,800 price difference becomes a more appetizing $5,000 disparity.

To be honest, Pikes Peak didn't commit us a real feel for the GTS's betters. It can snow time round at the summit, so our experiment auto was fitted with all-season rubber that unavoidably dulled some steering look and reduced at-the-limit control. While the turbo facilitates compensate for the influence losses at this altitude, there's appreciable lag until that increase comes on.

The day didn't terminate there, though. We set off for Mt. Evans, the most important one paved artery in America next. My trek between Colorado's two most important crests was more successful than ol' Zebulon's 1808 exploration of the Louisiana Purchase; Spaniards captivated Pike and his guys when they floated into what was then New Spain. My route made the GTS over rutted pavement and loose gravel along the Platte River; left in Comfort mode, the Macan GTS dutifully assimilated the irregular terrain with simply a hint of stiffness.

The Macan GTS peculiarity a button commemorated Off Road that jacks the breeze postponement up an additional 10 millimeters. None will intentionally push that button. Motorists will( and should) dial up Sport and Sport Plus. In those modes, the Macan recess with less lean hitherto manages to rub out artery imperfections. The GTS's specific tuned breeze postponement immediately divulged itself as the crossover's prime asset.

Despite the setup's relative perfection, the GTS's nose still pushes into recess and its guide, although direct, can feel numb. These are the compromises that must be made to give the motorist a set position that towers over sports cars. The good bulletin is that Porsche has largely forestalled returning the GTS into a clone of the Audi SQ5. The Porsche, candidly, doesn't sound as good as the SQ5, but it obscures its center of gravity better.

While the Macan GTS has some minor inaccuracies, the improvements over the S are noticeable. Together they bring the already terrific Macan even closer to the feeling of a Boxster on stilts. After all, we got to the top of the peak that Pike couldn't. Two ridges in one day, Porsche drooled. Seems like old-fashioned Zeb would have been impressed.

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Source      : Autoblog.com

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