PANAMERA 3.0 V6 DIESEL #2012
/ 12 46,725 MILES £43,495
3.0 V6 Diesel
My elderly BMW 525e E28 – see previous spread – didn’t exactly steal the show at Dove House, when I pitched up later the same day to do this Tried & Tested story, but it was certainly noticed. And once again there is never any shortage of notionally far more glamorous, far more desirable and above all far more valuable machinery on site. Sales executive Harvey Beaumont even snapped an image on his phone and sent it to an absent colleague who – like me – owns an M535i. Nice one.
I was there, as you will have gathered from the accompanying photos, to evaluate a Panamera, in this case a 3.0-litre V6 Diesel. It’s fair to suggest that I wasn’t the Panam’s biggest fan when it was first launched, in 2009, but having last year driven an equivalent 14-plate car all the way to Italy and back, today I would never willingly turn down a stint at the wheel. Even those later, facelifted models do have the kind of ‘Marmite’ looks that perhaps only a mother could truly love, but at the same time a massive presence, and even with just that oil-burning engine a level of performance and agility that will genuinely surprise you (see below). They can be almost implausibly economical, too (again see below). Just amazing, in fact. Try one!
So much for my sales pitch on behalf of the overall Panamera ‘brand’; what of this particular car? There is a predictably long list of both standard and optional features and equipment: Platinum Silver paint with black leather trim (and the front seats are not only heated, but also have the useful memory function); 20-inch Panamera Sport wheels, with Pirelli PZero tyres all round (and all four perhaps just 50 per cent worn); transmission is the default eightspeed Tiptronic. You also get – deep breath, and in no particular order – PCM3 with touch-screen sat-nav and Bluetooth connectivity; Sport Chrono Plus; cruisecontrol; adaptive xenon lights; Park Distance Control, with additional reversing cameras; a Powerlift tailgate; rear privacy glass; auto-dimming mirrors inside and out (and the latter can be set to fold when the car is parked); automatic engine-stop/start; a multi-function steering wheel; a longrange 100-litre fuel tank (and I got from Serre Chevalier in France all the way to Oxfordshire on one fill-up in ‘my’ similarly equipped Panam). And so on.
Condition-wise, this car is little short of pristine – and it could very easily be rendered thus if you wished. There are one or two tiny chips on the driver’s door, most likely from other people’s careless parking, and the rear end of each sill moulding is looking a little tired and abraded from dirt thrown back by the front wheels. There is an unfortunate small scrape on the righthand corner of the front apron (in addition to the usual small stone-chips), and the fibrous undertray is in places a little frayed.
The brake calipers, too, look rather dowdy; maybe they have been doused with too much acidic wheel cleaner with insufficient rinsing. But the wheels themselves are unmarked, both the air-con condensers and the engine bay are reassuringly clean – no leaks here – and inside the cabin the only flaws are a couple of tiny abrasions in the trim above the small extension to each armrest, on the body shell’s ‘D’-posts. If you were being especially picky you might also note the faint scratches in some of the gloss-black trim inserts, but sadly those are almost impossible to avoid unless you cover them from new in cling film.
The driving experience is magnificent, with acceleration – from an engine little bigger than my BMW’s – and turn-in, via the Servotronic electric steering, that almost defy belief. The only downside is a faint but none the less noticeable wheel wobble at about 70–75mph, but that is almost certainly the result of nothing more than a dislodged balance weight. Factor in the full service history, the most recent in January, at 46,400 miles, and the fact that the car is yet to have its first MOT test, and I think it’s an absolute peach.
As a 2012 model this rear-drive Panamera pre-dates the facelift that, in addition to sharper front-end styling, brought reshaped rear lights and, perhaps most significantly, a rear number plate set much lower in the bumper, almost down between the exhaust tailpipes. Its appearance, as a result, can from some angles be described as ‘challenging’, but the car has an undeniable presence, accentuated here by dark so-called privacy glass for the rear windows and tailgate (which last item also has the apparently unnecessary but actually very useful Powerlift facility). It is a measure of the car’s size and stance that the wheels – 20-inch Panamera Sport rims – don’t appear to be anywhere near that large, although the relatively modest luggage capacity, a function of the sharply raked body shell, might be a disappointment if you were expecting more. Bodywork is as good as you might hope for a three-year-old of this quality with just one previous owner, and such minor blemishes as there are – see main text – are in no way painfully obvious. Car has just two stamps in the service book – with the next due in a year’s time or 20,000 miles – and its first MOT test will be due very soon. Can’t see it not passing, though!
A (relatively!) low-specification 2012- model rear-drive Panamera 3.0 V6 Diesel. First registered on 20th March 2012, and sold by Porsche Centre Tonbridge. One owner from new, full service history (such as it can be; there are only two stamps in the book), and it hasn’t yet had its first annual MOT test – although obviously that is due about now.
WHERE IS IT?
The Panamera is one of around 50 Porsches and other prestige marques routinely in stock at Dove House Motor Company in Crown Way, Rushden, Northamptonshire NN10 6BS; tel: 01933 354144; dovehousecars.com. The company also has a large and wellequipped workshop to handle servicing and repairs across the Porsche model range, but primarily the later watercooled sports cars, as well as the Panamera and Cayenne, and is an agent for the Tracker theft-protection system.
FOR #Porsche #Panamera
3.0 V6 Diesel
Again, all the obvious factors: condition, specification and colour scheme, wellchosen options (on top of the already pretty lavish standard equipment) and not least its ability safely and peacefully (and, as a Diesel, frugally) to cross entire continents in the very worst traffic and weather conditions – and then, when required, to perform not unlike a hot hatchback less than half its size.
Never the best-looking Porsche, and in this pre-facelift guise arguably even more gawky than the later cars, especially from the rear. Competitively priced, and a significant saving on buying new, but still has plenty of depreciating to do. Has one or two very minor cosmetic issues, too – although nothing that would me put off.
Genuinely impressive in every respect, and well worth a look.
VALUE AT A GLANCE