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Taycan 4S electric car
Credit: Porsche https://newsroom.porsche.com/en/media-search.html?keyword=taycan+4s

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South Africa Gets The Porsche Taycan Before It Gets A Tesla

Porsche is rewarding its loyal South African fans by bringing the all-electric Taycan. It will be available in three variants, namely the Taycan 4s, the Taycan Turbo, and the Taycan Turbo S.

I always enjoy the drive down the lovely pavement that is the N1 South from Pretoria to Johannesburg. Sandton South Africa is an interesting place. After taking the Rivonia Road off-ramp, you drive past Sandton BMW where you could get yourself an i8 for just R2.4 million ($145,000) if you like. The i8 is South Africa’s top selling plug-in hybrid vehicle.

BMW i8

A BMW i8 at BMW Sandton. Image by Remeredzai Kuhudzai

A short detour to Melrose Arch and you can pop in to get a Rolls Royce Phantom and also check out some Lamborghinis. After which you could go back towards Nelson Mandela Square and Sandton City Mall to pick up a few things in Gucci, Louis Vuitton, or Prada. Driving down William Nicol to Bryanston you also pass Ferrari and Maserati dealerships.

I always like the drive on William Nicol as it always gives me an excuse to stop at my favorite Woolworths Café  at Nicolway and enjoy some avocado toast!

Avocado toast, Woolworths Café, Nicolway Bryanston, South Africa. Image by Remeredzai Kuhudzai

Parking at Nicolway is always an uber experience. It’s pretty normal (after having had my avocado toast) to find that one of these fancy rides had parked next me.  Here is an image of a Lambo parked next to my old ride, a modest VW Passat, which I have since sold.

My old VW Passat parked next a Lambo at Nicolway Bryanston, South Africa. Image by Remeredzai Kuhudzai

Here it is again on another random day parked next to a Maserati Levante SUV at Nicolway . The next day I could be parked next to a Bentley Bentayga or a Porsche Panamera.  Speaking of Porsche, it is a popular choice for those shopping for a luxury car brand in South Africa. It is miles ahead as well on the recent sales charts for May and June 2020.

A Maserati Levante SUV parked next to my old VW Passat on a random day at Nicolway, Bryanston, South Africa. Image by Remeredzai Kuhudzai

Table1: Top Selling Luxury Vehicles in South Africa, May and June 2020

Brand Units Sold in May 2020 Units Sold in June 2020
Porsche 115 109
Ferrari 15
Lamborghini 4 4
Maserati 2 4
Bentley 5 2

Porsche is rewarding its loyal South African fans by bringing the all-electric Taycan. It will be available in three variants, namely the Taycan 4s, the Taycan Turbo, and the Taycan Turbo S. Porsche has announced the pricing for the three models.

  1. The Taycan 4S starts at R2,586,000 ($156,739)
  • 79.2 kWh Battery (71 kWh Usable)
  • Range of 365 km
  • Total Power 390kW
  • Overboost Power with Launch Control
  • 640Nm maximum torque with Launch Control
  • 0 to 100km/h in 4.0 seconds with Launch Control
  • Top speed of 250km/h
Porsche Taycan 4S electric car

Porsche Taycan 4S, Image courtesy of Porsche

  1. The Taycan Turbo is priced from R3,426,000 ($207,664)
Porsche Taycan Press Image

Porsche Taycan, Image courtesy Porsche

  • 93.4 kWh Battery (83.7 kWh Usable)
  • 390 km
  • Up to 500kW 
  • Overboost Power with Launch Control
  • 850Nm maximum torque with Launch Control
  • 0 to 100km/h in 3.2 seconds with Launch Control
  • Top speed of 260km/h

  1. The Taycan Turbo S is priced from R4,027,000 ($244,086)
  • 93.4 kWh Battery (83.7 kWh Usable)
  • Range of 375 km
  • All Wheel Drive
  • Overboost Power with Launch Control
  • 560 kW Total Power
  • 1,050Nm maximum torque
  • 0 to 100km/h in 2.8 seconds with Launch Control
  • Top speed of 260km/h

Pricing of course excludes the additional options such as custom paint jobs, personalized leather interior, and 21-inch Taycan exclusive wheels. Lerato Matebese, Editor at The Driven Magazine, TCB Media South Africa, was very impressed with the Taycan. He says in his recent Facebook post, “I’m truly taken aback by the Porsche Taycan Turbo S. 560kW (”overboost”) and 1,050Nm; 0-100km/h in 2.8 seconds. The acceleration really takes your breath away! Full launch report in the August edition of Driven Magazine.” Check out some other reviews of the Taycan here  and here.

We certainly hope the Taycan also makes its way to the Porsche Dealerships in Nairobi, Kenya. With Kenya projected to be one of the markets with the fastest growth in the number of millionaires, the Taycan Turbo S should have no problem finding takers. Kenya’s electricity generation surplus plus its 93% renewable energy generation mix makes it just perfect for EVs.

Maybe just maybe, if I start cutting out all those avocado toast sandwiches, I could save up to get a Taycan Turbo S. I would certainly love to take it on a drive from Nairobi to my beloved Nakuru. With an estimated highway range of over 300 km in warm weather, I should be able to do the 180 km trip quite comfortably. A nice overnight charge would be enough to get back Nairobi. 

Many thanks to Terrance Ledwaba for some insights into South Africa’s Luxury vehicle market.

 
 
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Remeredzai Joseph Kuhudzai has been fascinated with batteries since he was in primary school. As part of his High School Physics class he had to choose an elective course. He picked the renewable energy course and he has been hooked ever since. At university he continued to explore materials with applications in the energy space and ending up doing a PhD involving the study of radiation damage in High Temperature Gas Cooled Nuclear Reactors. He has since transitioned to work in the Solar and Storage industry and his love for batteries has driven him to obsess about electric vehicles.

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