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A family-sized 911, the Porsche Panamera entertains at our track

Consumer Reports News: September 26, 2012 09:08 AM

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Essentially a family-sized 911, the Porsche Panamera sedan proved entertaining and even pampering at our test track. It holds true to many of the vaunted brand's driving characteristics, although this six-figure sedan does come with compromises.

The Panamera, Porsche's first four-door car, was warily received by some sports-car purists when it was introduced in 2009. But we found that our Panamera S, powered by a 400-hp V8, offers an inviting blend of performance and reasonable practicality that handily upholds the Porsche pedigree. It delivers quick acceleration and excellent handling. Passengers are coddled in a comfortable, quiet, nicely finished cabin. And a hatchback and folding rear seats add versatility.

But the cockpit is somewhat snug, there is seating just for four, the cluttered controls can be confusing, the firm suspension isn't as comfortable as that in a traditional luxury sedan, and the low-slung roof makes it challenging to get in or out in a dignified manner.

We compare the Panamera against the Fisker Karma in the November issue of Consumer Reports, where the German sport sedan handily outscored the curvaceous, high-tech extended-range hybrid.

Check out the video below for more Panamera highlights, and see our full road tests for complete details.

Fisker Karma earns a failing grade from Consumer Reports

Jeff Bartlett

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