When it comes to the technology of the Premium Platform Electric (PPE), the language in the VW Group is pretty clean and clearly defined. "We develop the PPE together on an equal footing," explains Dominik Hartmann, who works on the chassis of the Porsche Macan. If you dig deeper, you run into a wall of silence and non-binding statements. The reason for the group is particularly important when it comes to joint projects between the two southern German brands. For good reason. It's nothing new that the engineers from Ingolstadt and Weissach don't always agree. Differences of opinion have a long tradition, especially with the first Porsche Macan and the Audi Q5.
If you listen carefully, it becomes clear that Porsche takes it for granted that they do everything a little better than their Bavarian colleagues. "The next Macan should again be the sportiest model in its segment," says Powertrain Manager Antoon Janssen. Sounds completely natural in the agility-crazy Porsche world, but when you look at it closely it is a clear distinction from the development partner in Ingolstadt, where driving dynamics are not on the last pages of the specifications.
It is all the more important that the positioning of the two PPE technology brothers, the Audi Q6 e-tron and the Porsche Macan, is done with a fine blade. The Porsche Taycan and the Audi e-tron GT, both of which use the J1 architecture, show that this is possible. While the Zuffenhausen sports car is more "pointed" and celebrates agility, the Ingolstadt car lives up to its abbreviation GT and is the "rounder" one that emphasizes comfort a little more without neglecting sportiness too much. This blueprint is important when comparing the Porsche Macan to the Audi Q6 e-tron, both coming in 2024. At Porsche, tests with the electric Macan are already in full swing.
Porsche is now lifting the veil from the PPE architecture and if you keep the self-image of the two brands in mind, both similarities and differences can be worked out. The 100 kWh battery, which is equipped with prismatic cells, is set for both vehicles. It is not for nothing that Audi has been using this energy storage system since the facelift of the Q8 e-tron. The 800 volt technology, which enables fast charging, is also an integral part of battery technology. It should be possible to recharge with more than 270 kW, which the Taycan currently offers. Porsche has set itself the goal of filling the batteries from five to 80 percent in less than 25 minutes. An exciting innovation is the bank shop. If the charging station only offers 400 volt technology, a high-voltage switch is thrown and the battery is divided into two 400-volt batteries, which can then be charged quickly.
In this context, Porsche likes to talk about travel duration efficiency. Fewer refueling stops do not always get the Stromer to its destination faster. The motors, which at Porsche should not only have a lot of power, but also be able to provide it reproducibly, also contribute to the low power consumption. That is why permanent magnet synchronous electric machines (PSM) are used in the Macan and the PPE, which have been optimized for the Porsche SUV. In line with the more powerful engine on the rear axle, Porsche installed a pulse-controlled inverter (PWR) on the rear axle with silicon carbide (SiC) instead of silicon in the Macan.
If you take the pair of brothers Audi e-tron GT and Porsche Taycan as an example, the Macan will also set itself apart from its Ingolstadt technology brother in terms of power. With the top model, Porsche admits 450 kW / 612 hp and a torque of a brute 1,000 Newton meters. Anyone who knows the Cleverles in Weissach shouldn't be surprised when the syringe then produces around 470 kW / 639 hp. It is not for nothing that Porsche writes “first of all” in relation to performance. To ensure the typical Porsche agility in the e-crossover, the Zuffenhausen-based company places the rear e-motor behind the rear axle and equips it with an electronically controlled differential in the top version, which presumably again bears the misleading name "Turbo S". . Porsche calls this interaction “performance rear end”. It is not yet known whether Audi will adopt this design one-to-one. Customers of both brands will be delighted that the all-wheel drive can distribute the drive power wheel-selectively even without the lock. Just like its rear-heavy design. Porsche is aiming for an axle load distribution of 48 (front) to 52.
It gets interesting when it comes to packaging, because there are likely to be differences between the Audi Q6 e-tron and the electric Porsche SUV. Porsche has to save space to accommodate the rear-axle steering in the Macan, which turns the wheels with a maximum of five degrees. That is why the Zuffenhausen technicians have applied for a patent for a so-called "Integrated Power Box", in which the onboard AC charger, the high-voltage heater and the DC/DC converter are combined in one component. It is doubtful whether Audi will accommodate all-wheel steering in its Q6 e-tron. Because it takes up space and in Ingolstadt the suitability for everyday use is hung a little higher than in Zuffenhausen.
The chassis also opens up starting points for distinguishing between the two models. The fact that Porsche traditionally does a good job with the steering is nothing new. Audi has improved again in this area, but they will do everything in Weissach to ensure that this advantage is not lost through experience. Porsche also packs 22-inch tires in the wheel arches and equips the optional air suspension with two-valve dampers that can be tuned even more finely. However, such an arsenal of technology also costs money and the Zuffenhausen-based company benefits from the luxury sports car bonus with its wealthy clientele. Although Audi also pulls the premium card, it does not quite reach the Porsche heights in terms of price. So the drivers of the brand with the four rings are not offered the full range of chassis. Especially since the dynamics of the Q6 e-tron are not the priority, as they are with the Macan.