Ownership Diary - Porsche Macan S

Discussion in 'Others' started by Spuffington, Oct 16, 2018.

  1. Spuffington
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    Spuffington Moderator WARLORD Site Supporter

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    upload_2018-10-16_9-44-26.jpeg Well, I’m now just over 2.5wks with the Macan so thought a write-up was in order.

    By way of background, the Macan was both a spontaneous purchase as well as one which had been many, many years in the making. Since 2008 I’ve been on the cusp of realizing a dream and owning a Porsche but many things have got in the way. None of these necessarily financial – there’s been the battle with myself (I have suffered quite a bit with “imposter syndrome” in the past and believed I wasn’t good enough or that suddenly everything would come crumbling down) and my ex-wife was always one to call time on the idea whenever it was mooted.

    But once the house was sold and cashflow free’d up, a chance conversation with my girlfriend about a Carrera 997.2 I’d seen at 911Virgin had her immediately say “if you like it, why don’t you buy it”? The seed was sown. That was one lazy afternoon in Frankfurt lying on the sofa playing with the iPad, which then turned into many evenings of trawling the web for both cars and more and more research on “Porsche Ownership”.

    The brief was simple – I was “permitted” to buy a Porsche, but nothing else. The Porsche was the dream and this was about living a dream, not just replacing a car; since in her opinion (quite rightly), I had a fine car in the F11 530d which was owned outright and wanted for nothing. This was never going to be anything other than an emotional purchase, but it did have to still stack up financially and practically.

    In the end, the 911 was discounted as a concept. As much as I love driving them and would love to own one (although interestingly, less so now I have the Macan!), it’s just too compromised in many ways. I’d immediately discounted 997.1, even Official Porsche Centre (OPC - approved) cars due to the potential for bore scoring and IMS failure and I know the 997.2 cars have a much better build qualty on top of the DFI and more robust engines. My budget was good enough for a 997.2 OPC warrantied car but on PCP finance, Porsche took a very dim view of residual values (which in reality aren’t the case) which leads to very high monthly payments. They were affordable but not where I wanted to stick my hard-earned. On top of that, the practicality (or lack thereof) meant that this car would be uncomfortable for my daughter on longer journeys and completely useless if we extended our family in due course……..which is the grand plan.

    After whizzing through Cayenne’s, I kept coming back to the Macan. My Uncle has owned both and I remember loving the Macan. He’s had diesels in all of his Porsche SUVs and although they’re mighty fine units, they still lack soul and I’m done with diesel as a concept anyway. I think it’s particularly difficult to pin hopes on residuals and going back to the fact this was going to be realizing a dream, it had to be petrol. Diesel & Porsche seems a bit of an oxymoron for me and with Porsche themselves distancing themselves from heavy oil as a future fuel, it made my decision easier.

    So anyway, long and short of it was that I trawled around and came up with the spec I wanted which resulted (in my price bracket of up to 45k) in around 4 cars – all of which were Macan S. There were Macan (base) but they’re a turbo 4-pot, which is also no Porsche IMHO. I’m no big fan of silver, but my car is specced to the gills (with a lot of big things, but missing some smaller things, which I only found out afterwards, but more to that later). I found out during the “due diligence” phase that my car was an ex-press car – its registration number being similar to that of a few press reports I read and then having enquired further, I was sent a couple of videos by the dealership which showed my car getting rave reviews by a couple of well-known journo’s.

    At this stage I was unsure what to do, but I remembered conversations with my Uncle about when his firm looked after press fleet and other bits I’ve read elsewhere – the manufacturers ensure that the cars are well looked after as they have to be at their best for the journos. Porsche Hatfield also assured me that cars of my spec never went near the track – track work was reserved for those cars with 21” wheels and air suspension. So that then ruled out the other two cars in the OPC network!!!

    Video presentation, lots of chats on the phone, some haggling on px and list price (I got 7.2% off, which is close to max achievable with Porsche) and it was agreed due to my limited time in the UK that the car would be prepped for collection on testdrive day, paperwork would be done the day before and I could drive it away if I liked it. If not, then no hard feelings.

    On the day itself we (myself, girlfriend and daughter) at Porsche Hatfield and wandered around parking lot unable to see my car. Upon walking into the showroom, we were greeted and told to wander whilst they found our Salesman. I saw a beautiful looking silver Macan in the showroom and told Martina……….”that’s similar to our one” and carried on looking at all sorts of exotica. When the Salesman came asked if we wanted to see our car and then duly walked us over to what I had thought was a brand new one sitting in the showroom. It wasn’t – it was ours! J We were given time to pour over it and honestly, it was so difficult to think that it was not brand new. The level of preparation was immense. It was detailed to perfection and the only imperfection we could fine was a scuff on the interior plastic trim next to where my daughter sits, some slight scuffs on the entry sills and a tiny mark on the bonnet. Otherwise you’d quite easily have thought it was brand new.

    The Salesman then started it and drove it out of the showroom and from the moment he fired it up, I went weak at the knees! The testdrive was predictably brilliant. The steering is noticeably heavier than virtually any car I’ve driven and took some getting used to (although at speed it is weighted PERFECTLY) and the pick-up, in spite of being a petrol, is blistering. There’s no discernable turbo lag from the pair of turbos strapped to the 3 litre V6 and it goes away like a scalded cat. With so many reasons to be sensible and say no, I was grinning like a Cheshire Cat. I turned to my girlfriend and she nodded. That was it, deal done! J At that point, the Salesman directed us to the local Shell garage where he brimmed it with V-Power Unleaded (without me even asking) and we went back to the showroom.

    We were then whisked into a room off the showroom and the great presentation began. Out of a big fancy Porsche bag came a long wooden box – this was slid open to reveal the spare key on one side (nestling in high density foam) and a Porsche keyring the opposite side. In the middle a booklet, underneath a handwritten card from our Salesman “Dear Duncan, Congratulations on your first Porsche, welcome to the Porsche Family, Best regards, James” and underneath a picture of my Macan sitting in the showroom before I collected in a beautiful glass Porsche engraved frame. J Not content with bowling me over with that, I was then presented with two Porcelain Porsche mugs with gold leaf rims. I honestly felt like their best customer and like I’d bought a brand new car. During this period each person I’d had something to do with on the phone swung by and introduced themselves and said hi. We felt like royalty and I’ve got to say that Porsche know how to make the car purchase feel like you’ve bought something special. Unbelievable when the car speaks for itself.

    upload_2018-10-16_9-35-17.jpeg
    upload_2018-10-16_9-36-11.jpeg

    So that was it – I was handed the keys to my car – a quick stop for photos outside the dealership and a drive back along the A414 from Hatfield back to Woodford to my parents and the silliest grin from not only myself but my girlfriend and daughter. It’s such a special car that it can’t fail to get under everyone’s skin.









    So what is it?

    2014 Porsche Macan S with a 3litre twin turbo V6 pushing 340bhp

    - four-wheel drive system which defaults to 95% RWD in normal driving but can push up to 90% of its drive to the front wheels;
    - 0-60mph in 5.2secs (I have the optional Sports Chrono pack which takes off 0.2secs)
    - PDK 7-speed gearbox with flappy paddles
    - Porsche Torque Vectoring Plus (sends up to 90% of torque to one single wheel if needed to increase cornering yaw which makes it feel like it’s on rails!)
    In terms of options (some 15k’s worth):

    - Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM – adaptive dampers)
    - 75 litre fuel tank (standard is 60litres)
    - 18-way Adaptive Sports Seats (way firmer than BMW Comfort Seats but more adjustable and sooo comfy) inc.Comfort Memory Package;
    - BOSE Surround Sound
    - Panoramic Sunroof
    - Porsche PCM 2.1 Nav & Telephone
    - 20” SportDesign Wheels
    - Bi-Xenon headlights inc. Porsche Dynamic Light System (like BMW’s Adaptive system)
    - Heated Front Seats
    - Manual Roll-Up Sunblinds – rear
    - PTV Plus (see above)
    - Reversing Camera inc. ParkAssist front & rear
    - Speed Limit Indicator
    - Sports Chrono Pack
    - Sideblades in Carbon
    - Roof Rails in Gloss Black
    - Spoiler in Gloss Black
    - Window Surrounds in Gloss Black
    - Brushed Aluminium Interior Trim
    - Wheel Centres with full-colour Porsche Crest
    The car cost me 41k which I’m financing by way of PCP with 8k down and 480pcm over 48months which I don’t think is too bad given that’s way less than to get into a G31. It’s relatively cheap on monthlies as the residual values are so good. It’s covered by Porsche’s 2-year warranty & roadside rescue which is almost as good as new car one and extendable at 1.8k for two years (which I think is good value and I will certainly do upon expiry). Before collection it had new discs & pads up front, new rear tyres and its 4yr 40k mile service which is a big one and includes spark plugs. So I’ve two years before it needs any further service work or consumables (ideally). And that was really what sealed the deal for me.

    So that’s the car – I’ll do a write-up of my first couple of weeks with it later on today or tomorrow.
     
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  2. idrussell
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    idrussell Site Supporter

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    A great write up as always Duncan! Will be interested to hear how you get on with it over the next few months (y)
     
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  3. slim_boy_fat
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    slim_boy_fat WARLORD Site Supporter

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    ^^ What he says. (y)

    Just don't put those mugs in the microwave oven or you'll have your very own Van de Graaff generator! :D
     
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  4. The CO
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    Great write-up mate, I've still got my Porsche mug from 15 years ago, same one as yours!
     
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  5. Johnny Grabble
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    Excellent post...don't get me tempted!
     
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  6. rigeng
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    rigeng Site Supporter

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    I agree, it's getting to be a bit of a nightmare here for temptation into heavy expenditure. But we only live once...
     
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  7. kleynie
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    kleynie WARLORD Site Supporter

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    Git !
     
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  8. Spuffington
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    Spuffington Moderator WARLORD Site Supporter

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    Thanks for the comments so far. This particular purchase is most definitely about “one life –live it”. But as I said in “Part I” it also had to stack up financially and just as importantly, practically. I do think it’s doing that.

    I’ve now done a little over 600miles since purchase and feel like I’m getting to know it pretty well. Although I had done a couple of quick jaunts out just for the hell of it, I’ve actually been using it normally most of the time. That said, “normal” for the last fortnight or so has been different from “normal” for the previous 18months or so in the sense that when I was living in Saffron Walden, the 5er was being used mainly for longer trips up and down the M11. There’s been less of those recently (mainly because I’ve been in the UK for most of the two weeks since purchase) but normal service I expect to resume in the course of the next month.

    Let’s start with first impressions:

    It’s big…….but small at the same time. It’s much shorter in length than the F11 and you notice that when in parking spaces or parking on the road. But it’s so imposing due to the high bonnet line, it feels like it’s got real presence. The bonnet comes up above my waistline, but the roof comes below my shoulders. You’d think that that would make for uncomfortable entry and egress but you’d never notice and once on board, it feels like you’re in a 911………just without the funny noises you make when dropping yourself in or pulling yourself out! :lol:

    In spite of the additional height over the 911, the view over the instrument cluster and down over the bonnet is still pretty 911-esque and somehow the additional height, whilst giving you more visibility than a 911 or normal car, doesn’t feel as high as an SUV. This is compounded when on the move when the car corners so flat that you’d believe you were back in that Carrera.

    The real theatre is upon start-up. Cold start is like the gates of hell opening – a loud, bark of a fire-up, which is both raspy and guttural and settles down into a somewhat lumpy, growling idle until the oil makes its way around the block and starts warming up. It’s both terribly exciting and embarrassing, depending on where you are!! Early starts in a residential street or campsite are not for shrinking violets!!

    Pulling the big PDK lever back into Drive is the first physical sign you’re not in a modern BMW – but that’s only if you hadn’t noticed by that point the very different instrument cluster with big Tachometer taking all your attention and the theatrics of the Macan S logo and car outline on the mini-LCD instrument cluster to the right of it. Throttle pickup is immediate and in spite of a torque disadvantage over the diesel, the pickup is clean and it feels very torquey. The power delivery is linear and strong, even if coming from a diesel you might initially feel that the midrange is a bit weedy. But coasting off from standstill with very light throttle gives you an indication of what the car is capable of as it’s very difficult to maintain <30mph. The other very noticeable difference is the weight of the steering. It feels VERY heavy when you first drive away. But this then pays dividends when on the move – the steering is telepathic and the desire of the car to chase an apex is astonishing. This quick, decisive and very exploitable turn-in is then further exaggerated by the PTV Plus which, just when you think you’re on the limit, turns the yaw rate up to 11 and somehow finds another bucket-load more grip where you didn’t expect it. All the while whilst the PASM adaptive suspension is keeping the car totally flat through the corner.

    I’ve skipped ahead a bit, but that’s also kind of how the car takes you. It’s there to be driven. It will provide a comfortable, wafty-ish cruiser when you want it to. But you’re never under any illusion that this is anything other than a sports car. It’s like a well-behaved pedigree gun dog – it’ll take all the cuddles in the world when you just want to sit and relax with it, but show it a downed pheasant and it will leap into action, doing exactly what you ask from it with devastating efficiency. But that’s not to say that with this polished ability to handle so well, ride so well, steer so well and cover ground at an astonishing rate, that it’s lacking soul. Quite the opposite. This car has soul and charisma in bundles. It never feels like anything other than a treat to drive. I positively look forward to every drive in a way that I’ve not done so for years. It’s fun, practical, has kerb appeal in buckets (sometimes I have to be careful walking away from it so as not to trip over backwards whilst gazing back at it!) and, bizarrely, gets a lot of attention from other road users and pedestrians – not necessarily the usual negative Porsche stuff either. I’ve been really surprised at how people seem interested and also clearly love the sound it makes.

    Out in the sticks, flick on the Sports Plus Mode (firms up the suspension into Sport Plus – one stage harder than Sport, opens a valve in the exhaust for more volume and rasp and speeds up the gearchanges to lightning speed and throttle blip) and you have what feels like a racing or rally car. The sound the turbo’s make when spooling up is something out of Sega Rally from the 90’s. And although there’s a real uptick in forward momentum upon hitting 5k rpm, in reality there is power whenever you need it and it’s immediate. Pulling the gearshift paddles on the upchange has the gears slamming home; exhaust farting and bbbrraapping between upshifts and a real kick in the back. It’s relentless. On downchanges, the gearbox rev-matches in a blink of an eye and the engine breaking is quite breathtaking. It’s a serious adrenaline rush, which sadly you need to use wisely and sparingly as by third gear you’re already at some quite illegal speeds. But if you want to be blown away – this is a car which will do it. I’ve had moments where I’ve simply laughed at loud at the way it’s cornered or the acceleration I’ve received with merely a dab of the right foot. I’ve not yet had the balls to fully floor it!

    Obviously the fast you drive, the faster you have to stop. Porsche are well known for their own internal targets set which are:- However fast the car can accelerate to 60mph, it needs to stop in 50% of that time from that speed. I’ve not tested it in the Macan, but have done in plenty of others at Silverstone Porsche track. I have no doubt that the Macan is more than capable – it’s probably more a question as to whether the cars following you are capable or not. But the brakes are good – classis sports car brakes – initially bite seems lacking (especially if you’ve driven a VW!!!) but stand on them hard and boy are they wonderful things to scrub off speed but also precisely modulate.

    However, nothing can be perfect, right? Well, the same is true of the Porsche Macan. Firstly, as @The CO has alluded to, options – moreso than in a BMW even, are king. There are a few things which I haven’t got, which I was surprised about. I have exterior folding mirrors, but no auto dimming int. and ext. mirrors. What an omission!! To be fair, after having driven a good bit at night, it’s not as bad as I first thought, but it is disappointing on a 60k motor. Then there’s the missing “Interior Light Package” – it’s missing lights above the vanity mirrors in the sun visors. Not a huge point, but again, pretty poor show. And whilst you’re there trying to find them, the shockingly poor plastic covering of the sun visors belies a premium motor. But then again, I’m sure Porsche would say that’s the first owners fault for not speccing leather or alcantara (oh – but then the first owner was Porsche! :roll: ).

    That’s the options gripes over. Driving – well, the seats are a lot firmer than in the BMW Comfort Seats, but they are certainly no less comfortable. They’re just as adjustable as the Comfort Seats but not as squidgy. But then this is designed as a sports car. The ride is also a tiny bit firm – the chassis suspended on its stiff steel springs, but what it loses in spring rate it gains in damping. The chassis is very well controlled and perfectly judged. In “Normal” mode (i.e. default), the damping nips undulations in the bud, which would normally have had a passively sprung F11 bouncing in a calm and comfortable fashion. In sport mode, it becomes hard-riding, but never to the point where you feel like it’s too much, or too uncomfortable.

    Even though I mentioned its diminutive size vs. the 530d, it takes a while for it to shrink around you. I don’t think it has yet. I think it’s narrower than it feels, but probably not by much. There’s also a dreadful blind spot around the C-pillar which I found on the A406 on Sunday as I unwittingly cut up a Ford Focus as I moved into Lane 1. :eek:

    Problems: well, sadly I have a couple. One of which my girlfriend spotted on collection day as we were about to leave. There is a small piece of plastic trim in the grill which has popped up and needs replacing. I believe it’s aesthetic only but the Salesman was mortified – in his words they like to have it as close to new as possible and it was something which slipped through the net. It will get booked in to be resolved and I was promised either a Cayman, Boxster or 911 as a courtesy car whilst it was in. Can’t wait, frankly!! The more annoying issue is one which cropped up over the weekend – the front parking sensors went on the blink and now are completely defective. More annoying than this – a call to Porsche to book in means a waiting list of more than 2wks to be seen. Compared with the usual 24-48hrs to BMW, it’s a bit of a mickey take. It will get sorted, but I’m going to have to live with it for the moment.

    And finally, I’m sure you’re all waiting to hear: the fuel consumption. That’s appalling! What did I expect eh? Well it initially bothered me, now I’m ok with it. Of course I would always like more, but if you do drive it gently on a motorway jaunt, it is relatively easy to see 26mpg+ over a 50+ mile stretch. It is very sensitive to a warm engine – once it’s warmed up, the fuel economy improves appreciably. But cold urban journey you have to reckon on 20mpg at best. My overall in the 600 or so miles is 21.7mpg but I expect to climb higher to over 22mpg as time goes on as my journeys will be much longer focused.

    So – how do I feel after a few weeks. Over the moon! There are plenty of things which I like better in the BMW than the Porsche or are better executed, but for me, the way the Porsche makes me feel and the way it drives trumps all of the little aesthetic touches or technology I’ve got used to on BMWs. There’s nothing (not even the fuel economy) which would make me want to get rid of this car right now. Even with the BMWs which are stand-outs (the E60 550i LCi, X5 40d LCI & F11 530d), the desire to drive them for the sake of it, waned fairly quickly (within a week or so) and I viewed them as just “tools”. But the Porsche still very much has my attention. I get excited the day and hour before driving. I find myself smiling when I see the key or peep outside the window to check it out parked up on the street. I pinch myself that I own a Porsche. And as I said – firing it up is reminder of not only how lucky I am, but of how much fun I’m about to have on every drive! :)
     
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  9. Verbarthe
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    Verbarthe WARLORD Site Supporter

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    Good to hear it s all you wanted and that your enjoying it :) Don t put the mugs in the dishwasher either (y)
     
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  10. Mieke
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    Mieke WARLORD Site Supporter

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    Congratulations again, Duncan. It certainly sounds as though Porsche know how to impress their customers. (y)

    Which BMW dealership can you get booked in within 24 - 48 Hrs + courtesy car? Mine takes more like 2 - 3 weeks, but it would only be maybe a couple of days without a courtesy car.
     
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    Last edited: Oct 16, 2018
  11. K777
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    K777

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    you'll do well to get a 911 as a loaner, in Leeds its Panamera's or Macans. :ranting:
    Believe me I ask every time.

    - Mines going in on Monday as the Porsche Car Connect phone app is saying I have - 58psi in my tyres . They want me to be with the car with my phone whilst they test whats happening.
     
  12. isleaiw
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    isleaiw

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    Great read as always and glad you are enjoying it. I had a Macan GTS on order last summer but I couldn’t get my head round actually owning a Porsche - plus the practicality wasn’t great for the dog.. in the end and bought an SQ5 instead, which I absolutely adore for many of the reasons you state.

    It’s a bit more economical too!
     
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  13. snrbrtsn
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    snrbrtsn WARLORD Site Supporter

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    Great write ups, certainly makes for very tempting reading,
     
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  14. Phil
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    Fantastic write up, your enthusiasm is infectious, glad you're enjoying it so much.

    Have fun.
     
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  15. bishbosh
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    bishbosh WARLORD Site Supporter

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    Excellent write up Dunk. It looks quite well specced, although I agree basic stuff i.e. vanity mirror lights, etc really should be standard by now! But if that's the only fly in the ointment then I wouldn't worry too much.
    Have fun driving! (y)
     
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  16. kleynie
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    kleynie WARLORD Site Supporter

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    I don’t think the mpg is too bad. If you consider my old 3 litre petrol E61 was averaging 23mpg and that was only 218bhp!
     
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  17. mystic sport
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    mystic sport

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    I went to Porsche when the Macan was first released and starting speccing one for a two year delivery and then started ticking the options and had heart failure.

    An awesome car and great value second hand I think, still haven't ruled one out in the future. The M5 is a keeper for life so a Macan could make a nice every day motor, enjoy your ownership. Good MPG by the way, I am a bit jealous lol
     
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  18. zarnd
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    That fuel consumption is good. I’m already thinking of a 911 in the near future to add.

    What comes after P though? F...


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
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  19. Harry
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    Harry Site Supporter

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    Belated congratulations Dunc. Glad I finally caught up with this. It reminds me of the X6M a little bit. A type of car that is necessary to have owned if you are lucky enough, but totally unnecessary as a car. You have ticked that box. If it turns out to be a long term proposition and stays with you for a few years, then all the better. I wish you big fun with it. Great reports so far. I hope you will be able to find the time to keep us updated.
     
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  20. K777
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    K777

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    God I hope so
     

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