2022 Porsche Macan T review (video)

Mark Davis

It’s the ultimate dream machine suitable for everyday use. A high-performance, mid-sized luxury SUV; the Porsche Macan. The German marque’s best-selling model is still in its first generation. Sales are maintaining strength, with units increasing from 1880 between January and October 2021 to 2363 in the same period in 2022 in Australia. And those numbers should only get stronger thanks to a new variant, the Macan T.

The T or ‘Touring’ is the first time Porsche has taken this model designation out of the 911 and 718 range. It comes with a 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo-petrol engine that produces 195kW and 400Nm, paired to a seven-speed PDK (Porsche Doppelkupplung) dual-clutch automatic transmission with all-wheel drive.

The lineup is now boosted to four variants; the Macan, Macan T, Macan S, and Macan GTS. Porsche is set to debut the second generation Macan later in 2023, with an all-electric powertrain. So, let’s test the T with its combustion engine while we still can. Prices kick off from $92,700 (excluding on-road costs).

2022 Porsche Macan T – THE SPECS

[column width=”47%” padding=”6%”]Engine: 2.0-litre turbo-petrol four-cylinder
Output: 195kW@6500rpm / 400Nm@1800-4500rpm
Transmission: Seven-speed dual-clutch auto
Drive type: All-wheel drive
Wheels: F: 20×9.0, 265/45  R: 20×10, 295/40
ANCAP: Not tested
Tare weight: 1818kg
Power-to-weight: 9.32:1 (kg:kW)
Official fuel economy: 9.5L/100km
Economy during test: 9.8L/100km[/column] [column width=”47%” padding=”0″]Fuel capacity/Type: 75L/98 RON
Power efficiency: 20.52kW:L/100km
0-60km/h: 2.90 seconds*
0-100km/h: 6.34 seconds*
60-110km/h: 4.62 seconds*
1/4 mile: 14.64 seconds at 152.8km/h*
Max acceleration: 0.891/g
100-0km/h braking: 3.09 seconds at 38.94 metres*
Max deceleration: -1.264g
Decibel at idle (/sport mode): 45/49*
Peak decibel at 60-100km/h: 87*
Priced from: $92,700[/column][end_columns]

* Figures as tested by PerformanceDrive on the day. Factory claims may be different

2022 Porsche Macan T – THE PACKAGE

Given this generation has been out since 2014, its look is instantly familiar. The iconic front end gives it away with headlights like frog eyes that sit high on the bonnet, and a large gauze black grille. Through the midsection, contours are smooth, which emanates a sense of high-speed travel. The rear still steals the show with one long, countersunk LED taillight, and prominent twin dual exhausts exclusive to the T. Its overall shape resembles more of a ‘cut through the wind’ coupe than a bulky and tall SUV.

In line with Porsche’s overarching design philosophy, the Macan’s interior presents with a mechanical and sporty feel. A bit like a plane’s cockpit, there are lots of circular gauges and buttons. Only a small portion of the instrument cluster is digitised with a 4.8-inch colour display. We love the suave analogue clock with an inbuilt stopwatch that sits in the top-centre of the dash. It pairs with a nifty drive mode switch on the steering wheel as part of the Sport Chrono package, which is standard on the T.

The Macan T scores a leather package in black with seat centres made with Sport-Tex stripe material. It all feels plush and high in workmanship; and the many adjustments available ensures all body shapes can be made comfortable. This is emphasised more in this test car’s case, which features the optional 18-way adjustable power sports seats ($2410).

Interior space is not really a priority for Porsche in most of its cars. But SUVs are designed for everyday use, so it’s only fair we judge it as one. The Macan is not the biggest mid-sized SUV on offer, but there is easily enough space for four adults to ride without fuss.

Even though it inherits that sporty, coupe-like swooping roofline, it doesn’t seem to impede on headroom. Though, the boot slants down diagonally and cuts into available cargo space. It offers 488 litres of volume, or 1508 litres when the rear seats are folded down.

As standard, the Macan T comes with a 10-speaker, 150-watt sound system. You can also opt for a Bose 14-speaker, 665-watt system like our test vehicle ($2230). It sounds brilliant and plays via a sharp 10.9-inch touch-screen multimedia system. Though, there is no option for Android Auto connectivity – a huge setback in our minds.

Other standard items for the Macan T include collision mitigation, lane-departure warning, blind-spot sensors, front and rear parking sensors, front, rear and side cameras, three-zone climate control (one setting for the rear passengers), heated front seats, active-cornering LED headlights, rain-sensing wipers, tyre pressure monitoring, sat-nav, and wide 20-inch alloys wrapped in 265/45 front and impressive 295/40 rear Michelin Latitude Sport 3 tyres (up from 235 and 255 on the standard base model).

Disappointingly, you need to pay extra to score radar cruise control and active lane keeping assist. These should definitely come as standard by now. And since the Macan has not been rated by ANCAP, these features can simply be overlooked without the wrath of being short of a five-star rating.

There is a ludicrously huge list of customisation options to select from. If you like individuality, the Macan will not disappoint. You can do things like pick your own exterior colour, pick certain external part colours, choose up to five different seat belt colours, have the Porsche crest stitched into the centre armrest, and pick from more than 15 different wheels, for example. Some will see this as a negative while others will appreciate the breadth of personalisation possibilities.

Porsche falls short of the five-year warranty industry average for premium new vehicles in Australia. We guess it can get away with it since it is more of a high-end brand than the common ones. You get a three-year, unlimited kilometre warranty, and three years of free roadside assistance. Servicing is required every 12 months or 15,000km.

2022 Porsche Macan T – THE DRIVE

Even though the Macan T comes with the lower spec petrol engine in the lineup, it’s still an exhilarating one. The 2.0-litre, four-pot aluminium engine outputs 195kW and 400Nm. This translates to a 0-100km/h claim of just 6.2 seconds, down from 6.4 in the entry model. Our tests clocked the sprint in 6.36 seconds, but we think it was slightly behind our previous results achieved in the base model (6.06 seconds) purely because this test car is heavily-optioned and likely weighs more.

It’s never a lazy engine. Even when driven gently, it cuts to the chase with minimal hesitation. And with full torque coming in from 1800rpm, the Macan T can pull away confidently without the need to rev up high. Of course, if you want to play, it will do that with pleasure, too. In fact, it feels comfortable and free to dance very high in the rev range. And an unbeatable angry Porsche roar comes with it, especially when you option for the sports exhaust as tested here.

The PDK seven-speed dual-clutch transmission is a perfect match for the engine. On the road, it has the intuition to have right gear selected before acceleration is applied. And through acceleration, gear shifts are ultra-fast and smooth. Though, common in dual-clutch autos, there is a pesky hesitancy when inching in reverse. You do get used to it, but it can be annoying when intricately parking and a queue of traffic is building. The system biases power towards the rear wheels, which aids that traditional touring feeling.

Those eyeing down a Porsche are probably not too worried about fuel consumption. That is a good thing because the official average is quite high for its class and power level, at 9.5L/100km. Our testing over about 550km averaged 9.8L/100km. Weighing 1818kg, it’s not a particularly light SUV but it is at the lighter end of its segment. A minimum of 98 RON petrol is also required.

In the Macan T variant, you get independent suspension all round with steel springs and electronically adjustable dampers with Porsche’s Active Suspension Management (PASM) system as standard. Ride height is lowered to 187mm, or 15mm lower than the base Macan. You can go further by adding the plush air suspension package as well, for $2790, giving the SUV a big boost in comfort and versatility.

On the road, the Macan T is prejudiced towards performance dynamics and sporty handling, as you’d expect. You can truly take on corners fast without any sag or sloppiness. Going around winding coastal bends is where this SUV feels more like a touring coupe. Anti-roll bars on the front axle are stiffer than the base Macan to reduce body roll and deliver a more direct steering feel. And it works in brilliantly with the wide, grippy tyres, and the highly accurate and engaging steering feel.

With very agile handling there is a small sacrifice as the ride is tensioned and ready to mitigate body lean. Even with the adjustable air suspension and dampers on the comfort setting, sharp bumps tend to travel into the cabin but it means you can really feel the road beneath you. Aussie roads are harsh, challenging the level of comfort, but it is a more refined ride with the air suspension than without it.

Surprisingly, the brakes pulled up this test car from 100-0km/h in a best of 38.94 metres according to our Vbox. That’s worse than we were expecting. However, a one-off emergency stop doesn’t paint the full picture. Longevity is perhaps more important, and here we can confirm this car performed very consistently after three back-to-back 100-0km/h tests.

You get 350mm diameter front discs with four-piston aluminium monobloc fixed brake calipers up the front, and 330mm diameter discs with floating callipers at the rear.

2022 Porsche Macan T – THE VIDEO

2022 Porsche Macan T – THE VERDICT

It’s always an honour to open the door to a car that makes you feel prestige and exhilarated at the same time. Even though this first gen Macan has been out for a number of years, the amount of precision and performance put into it means it can enjoy a long model run. And the newly added T spec freshens it up for one last spin around the sun before it delves into the EV gamut.

As expected from Porsche, the Macan T’s handling ability and engine performance are its star attributes. It traces corners like its coupe siblings; not like an SUV at all. And for a base model engine, it surges with enthusiasm and produces an intoxicating soundtrack.

The T sets out to be the one you want for regular long drives exploring interesting and exciting roads. We think it lives up to the brief perfectly thanks to its wider tyres and high level of desirable inclusions – a lot of which enhance the engaging drive character – while making use of the most economical engine in the range.

[column width=”47%” padding=”6%”]PROS:
– Preserved raw driving feel
– Unmistakable Porsche design and recognised prestige
– ‘T’ package adds wider tyres and PASM lowered suspension; handles like a dream
– Build quality
– Sports exhaust option provides very exciting soundtrack
[/column] [column width=”47%” padding=”0″]CONS:
– Ageing model; first released in 2014
– Fuel consumption is high for a 2.0L 4-cylinder engine
– Rear legroom is tight for this class SUV
– Some features that should be standard are costed options[/column][end_columns]

As always, if you’re thinking about buying a new car don’t forget to click here to speak with our car buying specialists.

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