It can monitor vehicle parameters and make adjustments quicker than current stability control systems.
The Porsche Taycan is the company’s first all-electric offering, and it won’t be the last. The suave EV saloon utilises a pair of motors to drive all four wheels, and in Turbo S configuration it can hit 60 mph in just 2.6 seconds. It also handles corners like a straight-up boss, but Porsche believes it can do better. With an SUV. In snow. Obviously, there’s more to this curious story.
Porsche's current EV offering:
- Porsche Taycan 4S shows up in LA with striking blue paint
- Watch how Porsche meticulously assembles the 2020 Taycan
Engineers in Stuttgart are working on a system that utilises not two motors but four, one for each wheel. If that sounds suspiciously like Rimac’s design for its electric hypercars, you’re not wrong. Porsche, however, is spending considerable time not on the motors, but on a software package that uses existing sensors and an overall monitoring system to precisely control each motor. Furthermore, it’s being tested not for use in performance cars, but for electric SUVs. As such, safety is the primary mission for this endeavour, though Porsche does claim such a system could let an SUV corner like it’s on rails, even in snow.
Porsche's current SUV stable:
- 2020 Porsche Cayenne Turbo S E-Hybrid first drive: Electrification intensification
- 2020 Porsche Macan Turbo is a 435-bhp sports car masquerading as a CUV
That’s a very bold statement to make considering snow is, you know, slippery. Even the best electronic systems can’t negate a basic lack of grip, but this system is designed to monitor all kinds of vehicle parameters to better understand the SUV’s real-life status at all times, not just when the wheels are slipping. That allows the software to act quicker when slippage is detected, adjusting power to individual wheels which Porsche says can happen in a fraction of a second and be virtually seamless to the driver.
When will the new system – not to mention this barely-mentioned e-SUV – be available? Porsche has no information beyond the development and testing of this software, which took place during the course of two winters and has apparently concluded. And since this is purely software designed to work with existing sensors, in theory it can be used on any vehicle running four individual motors. Porsche also says it can be adapted for other motor configurations, so, for now, we’ll just have to be patient until this makes its way to production. If the system works as good as Porsche claims, you can be sure we’ll hear all about it.