Porsche Macan 2021 review

The Porsche Macan is the firm’s smallest SUV, and is upmarket and fantastic to drive

£48,029
Average price
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2
Out of 5

Pros

  • Fantastic to drive
  • Strong performance
  • Brilliant build quality

Cons

  • Pricey to buy
  • Firm ride
  • Plenty of safety kit is optional
  • MPG

    0 - 0

  • CO2

    0 - 0 g/km

  • Video

  • Price Guide

  • Trims

  • Summary

Model review

Porsche is no longer just known for its sports cars, but also its SUVs, with the success of its large Cayenne, which arrived in 2003, helping to ensure this manufacturer’s longevity and allowing it to keep financing its outlandish performance model. 

And with the SUV segment continuing to rise in popularity throughout the 2000s and 2010s, it wasn’t surprising that Porsche looked to expand its range in this respect, and introduced a smaller and more affordable option to rival the likes of the BMW X3 and Audi Q5

The answer was the Macan – a sleek, sporty and high-quality mid-size SUV that was unveiled at the 2013 Los Angeles Auto Show, with models arriving in showrooms the following spring. Available with a choice of petrol and diesel options from launch, the range would be bolstered with hot GTS models delivering an even sportier focus. 

Latest model

The only major update to the Macan, though, came at the end of 2018 when the model was given a mid-life refresh. Design changes weren’t huge, but it was modernised with new LED headlights and a cool full-width LED light bar at the rear – the latter being the easiest way to tell apart a facelifted model. New colours such as Crayon, Mamba Green and Miami Blue were also introduced.

Inside, the Macan benefitted from a larger 11-inch touchscreen (up from 7.2 inches) running the brand’s latest software and also coming with enhanced connected functions, such as an online satellite navigation system. 

Improvements were also made to the model’s high-speed stability and comfort, while a new ‘Traffic Jam Assist’ function offered an enhanced version of adaptive cruise control to make city driving and longer journeys more relaxing. Hot Turbo and GTS models would also shortly be introduced. 

Value for money

Perhaps unsurprising from a manufacturer like Porsche, the Macan won’t be bought for its value for money, with the range starting from £47,060 for the standard Macan and rising through to £68,910 for the top-spec Turbo. That doesn’t tell the full story, though, as you’ll probably want to add plenty of options which rack up the price. Standard equipment isn’t especially generous, either, with features such as keyless entry and a reversing camera both absent, and really should be included for the price. 

With the Macan being one of the more popular Porsches in recent years, there are plenty on the used market, too, with high-mileage examples starting from around £23,000, which gets you a lot of car for the money. A lower mileage and well-specced version will cost you closer to £30,000, though, and you’ll pay a premium for Turbo and GTS models. 

Looks and image

If you value image, there are few things in this segment and at this price that can better the Macan. It’s immediately recognisable as a Porsche and certainly looks like a smaller Cayenne. Just be aware that it is quite spec-dependent, with smaller alloys doing little for the model’s look. While the early examples remain stylish, the revised version brings desirable features, such as a sharper front end and that cool LED light bar. 

The upmarket feel continues to the cabin as well, with the Macan’s interior being exceptionally well put together with only the best materials. It also has a ‘sports car look’ with its dials and superb driving position. The only real complaint is that the centre console is somewhat overwhelmed with buttons, and it does look a bit fussy compared to more modern Peugeots and other SUVs in this class. 

But really the best thing about the Macan is the way it drives. For a high-riding model, this Porsche is superb and easily the most fun car to drive in its class, regardless of version as all get plenty of power. With minimal body roll and a host of driving settings to choose from, it leads the way where driving enjoyment is concerned. It’s also impressively refined and a great cruiser, though the ride is firmer than other models in this class. 

Video review

Space and practicality

Despite being the smaller SUV in Porsche’s range, the Macan is still a roomy and practical choice that’s well-suited to family life. There’s plenty of rear space for adults, and three should be able to sit comfortably in the back. 

The 500-litre boot isn’t as large as some of its rivals, but is still a generous size, and increases to 1,500 litres with the rear seats folded. 

Our only criticism here is that the Macan doesn't get as much driver assistance technology as standard compared with some of its rivals – Porsche instead offering features like lane change assist and adaptive cruise control as optional extras. 

Engines 

The Macan range has changed throughout its lifetime, so to begin with we’ll focus on the models that have been around since the 2018 facelift, which have all been petrol. Diesel was axed at a similar time, while the model is yet to embrace electrification.

It’s a 242bhp 2.0-litre option (badged Macan) that kicks off the range, but it can still reach 60mph in 6.7 seconds and hit a 140mph top speed. It’s followed by the Macan S, GTS and Turbo, which all use a larger 2.9-litre six-cylinder unit. The S develops 349bhp, and takes the 0-60mph time down to 5.1 seconds. 

The GTS is the purest option in the range, and gets dynamic changes as well as a power boost – producing 375bhp and allowing for a 0-60mph time of 4.7 seconds. At the top of the range the mighty Turbo kicks out 434bhp, can go from 0-60mph in just 4.3 seconds, and head on to a 168mph top speed. 

The engine choice before 2018 was largely the same, though the Turbo instead used a 3.6-litre V6. There was also a 254bhp 3.0-litre V6 diesel available, which proved particularly popular. 

Running costs

If you’re wanting a Macan that’s relatively cheap to run, you should find a used diesel model, with Porsche claiming it will return 46.3mpg, along with CO2 emissions of 159g/km. 

The current range of petrol options will cost rather a lot to run, though, with even the most efficient Macan returning just 27.2mpg, with 232g/km CO2 emissions. It’s a shame Porsche hasn’t introduced a plug-in hybrid to this SUV’s range, as it’s an option available on the majority of its rivals. 

Maintenance costs are likely to be quite steep, too, given the Macan’s upmarket status. 

Things to look out for 

The Macan is known for being well-built, though it’s particularly important on a model like this to look out for up-to-date and regular maintenance, and not trying to save on costs by using cheaper parts. 

On a model of this expense, it’s worth paying for an independent mechanical inspection to be carried out for extra reassurance. 

Rivals

Premium SUVs have risen in popularity in recent years, and there are plenty of options to choose from in this class – such as the BMW X3 or X4, Mercedes GLC and Audi Q5. If you fancy something equally sporty to drive, an Alfa Romeo Stelvio is worth looking at, though lacks the finesse and badge appeal of the Porsche. Other options worth considering in this class include the Jaguar F-Pace, Range Rover Velar and Volvo XC60

Depreciation

Few car logos carry the same gravitas as Porsche’s, and unsurprisingly these models remain hugely desirable on the used market. Tidy used Macans are now available from around £25,000, though they hold their value far better than rivals. You’re unlikely to find a good saving on nearly-new examples, though. 

Which Macan to pick

Cheapest to buy when new

5dr PDK

Most MPG

5dr PDK

Fastest model (0-60)

GTS 5dr PDK

Trims explained

Only one main trim is offered as such on the Macan, with the engine being the factor that changes things. Standard equipment highlights are as follows.

Macan

The Porsche Macan comes as standard with 18-inch alloy wheels, LED headlights and a full-length LED light bar. You also get electric folding mirrors, three-zone climate control, an electric driver’s seat and heated front seats. Front and rear parking sensors are also included, along with lane departure warning, cruise control and a leather and Alcantara cabin. You also get a 10-speaker sound system, an electric boot and an 11-inch main touchscreen.

From £47,060

Summary

  1. Superb to drive…
  2. Yet still roomy and practical
  3. High-quality cabin
  4. Strong performance…
  5. Though petrol engines are thirsty
  6. No hybrid option
  7. Stunning looks
  8. Desirable used buy
  9. Launched in 2014, updated in 2018
  10. A superb sports SUV, if you don’t need to keep an eye on costs

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