If you're looking for a coupe with blisteringly fast acceleration, let's say sub 3-second 0-60 mph times, the selection is plentiful. Comb through the data our road test staff so diligently harvest in our Road Test Summary and you'll find quite a few. But let's say your quest for 3 sec requires a car capable of hauling three more passengers via individual doors, the list is as exclusive as a stanchioned off Hollywood club. Few manufacturers produce sedans with that kind of might. Unless they're Porsche. Their Panamera Turbo is an elite member of the fast-four-door sedan club and after the 2011 New York International Auto Show, they now have another.
Making its debut at the Big Apple is the 2012 Porsche Panamera Turbo S. The sportier brother of the Panamera Turbo, they both share the same 4.8-liter V-8 heart. Where the two will differ is their turbocharger. The Panamera Turbo S receives new twin turbos with titanium–aluminum turbines that are lighter and more responsive than those of the Turbo model. Retuned, the Turbo S pumps out 553 lb.-ft. of torque and 550 bhp. The regular Panamera Turbo produces 516 lb.-ft. of torque and 500 bhp, 37 lb.-ft. and 50 bhp less than the Turbo S – a 10-percent disparity for the latter.
If these increases aren't enough, the standard Sport Chrono Package Turbo offers an overboost feature in the "Sport" or "Sport Plus" mode, bumping up the twist figure to 590 lb.-ft. of torque -- 74 lb.-ft. more than the standard Panamera Turbo.
To put the extra torque to the ground, new 20-inch Turbo II wheels with wider rears will come stuffed under the hind haunches of the Panamera Turbo S. Porsche Exclusive side skirts and an adaptive four-way extending rear spoiler round out the exterior. The cabin will come with bi-color leather standard with black/cream and Agate Grey/cream exclusive Panamera Turbo S combinations. Exclusive for the exterior paint will be the Agate Grey Metallic.
In vein with the sportiness associated with the S plaque, the Panamera Turbo S is laden with standard features: Dynamic Chassis Control (PDCC: active anti-roll system that reduces lateral body movement under load), torque vectoring (PTV Plus: variable torque split for the rear axle and electronically controlled rear differential increase traction and cornering), and Servotronic steering system (speed-sensitive steering).
As for the 0-60 mph time. With the Launch Control on, Porsche has the Panamera Turbo S conservatively pegged at 3.6 sec. Jonathan Elfalan, our Road Test Editor, expects low 3s at our test track placing the sedan deep into Ferrari and Lambo country. Top speed is rated at 190 mph and fuel efficiency at 15 city/23 highway.
Priced at $173,200 ( $975 for delivery), the Porsche Panamera Turbo S will go on sale late this spring.