The Porsche Macan went on sale for the 2015 model year and has quickly become the brand’s best-selling vehicle. Lighter, nimbler and more compact than the Cayenne, the Macan is a true mix of SUV and sports car characteristics, and is a great option for anyone longing for a Cayman, but also needing the practicality of four doors and cargo space.
Though it shares its platform with the Audi Q5, the 2019 Porsche Macan has been significantly reworked in order to differentiate it from its more mainstream cousin, and everything from its interior to its engines to its driving and handling characteristics are decidedly Porsche.
What’s New for 2019?
The Macan receives a mid-life cycle refresh for 2019. Changes outside include new headlights, a new front air dam, a new wraparound rear light cluster and a few new exterior colors. Inside, the Macan gets a larger center infotainment screen and a newly optional GT Sport steering wheel similar to what you’ll find on the 911. See the 2019 Porsche Macan models for sale near you
What We Like
- Great interior
- Loads of options for personalization
- Excellent handling
- Sports-car-like performance
- Fun new colors
What We Don’t
- Adding options means the sticker price increases quickly
- Rear passenger and cargo room is tight
The Macan comes standard with all-wheel drive and one transmission option: a 7-speed dual-clutch automatic. While the GTS and Turbo models are certain to remain a big part of the Macan lineup going forward, only updated versions of the Macan 4-cylinder and Macan S have been released so far for 2019, so we’ll focus on those models in this review. The base Macan uses a 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder putting out 249 horsepower and 273 lb-ft of torque, good for a 0-to-60 mph time of 6.1 seconds. Step up to the beefier Macan S, which gets a revised engine for 2019. It’s still a turbocharged 3.0-liter V6, but drops one turbocharger, making it what Porsche refers to as a "mono-turbo" setup rather than a twin turbo. Power is up slightly, as the Macan S now puts out 348 hp and 354 lb-ft of torque. 0-to-60 mph takes 5.1 seconds.
As mentioned, while updated versions of the Macan GTS and Turbo have yet to be released, they’re certain to come back into the fray in the near future. In past model years, the Macan GTS has used a slightly more powerful version of the turbocharged V6 found in the Macan S, while the Macan Turbo uses a larger 3.6-liter twin turbo V6 making a healthy 400 hp and 406 lb-ft of torque.
According to the EPA, in base 4-cylinder form, the Macan returns 20 miles per gallon in the city, 25 mpg on the highway and 22 mpg in combined driving. These figures shrink slightly in the Macan S, dropping to 18 mpg city/23 mpg hwy/20 mpg combined. Expect the GTS and Turbo models to have fuel economy similar to the Macan S.
Standard Features & Options
The Macan has traditionally been offered in four trim levels: base, S, GTS and Turbo. Porsche has opted to introduce updated versions of the base and S models for 2019. Expect the updated GTS and Turbo to join for 2020.
The base Macan ($51,150) comes with 18-in wheels, a 10-speaker sound system and a new 10.9-in infotainment screen running the latest version of the Porsche Communications Management System. Additional features include front and rear parking assist, Bluetooth connectivity, a sport steering wheel with paddle shifters, a power rear lift gate, auto-leveling self-cleaning LED headlights, leather and Alcantara, and eight-way power adjustable seats.
The Macan S ($60,000) comes standard with 19-in wheels, memory seats, adaptive headlights and rain-sensing windshield wipers to go with its more powerful turbocharged V6 engine.
The GTS and Turbo up the ante even further with even more unique styling elements and more standard features. The GTS adds auto start/stop, the Porsche Active Suspension Management Air Suspension, 20-in wheels, the Sport Design Package, and unique seats and a sport exhaust system. The Turbo brings more specific design features, a suede headliner, heated seats offering more configurability, a heated steering wheel and a 14-speaker Bose audio system.
Porsche prides itself in allowing for endless personalization and customization of its vehicles from the factory, and most of the unique features offered on upper trims can be specified on lower-end iterations of the Macan as well. Everything from 21-in wheels to air-suspension, to a torque vectoring system to the Sport Chrono Package — which comes with a stopwatch, launch-control and additional drive settings — is available as an additional option on even the 4-cylinder Macan. When it comes down to it, if you’re willing to order one directly from the factory, you can have your Macan just about any way you want it.
While it’s short on cargo volume, offering just 17.7 cu ft. behind the rear seats, the Macan delivers when it comes to towing capacity, offering an impressive 4,409 pounds when properly equipped.
The Macan comes with all of the safety features you’d expect on a modern vehicle along with a (federally mandated) backup camera and a litany of airbags. The Macan also comes with lane-departure warning and front and rear parking sensors. While many mainstream vehicles make a full suite of active safety features standard across the lineup, getting many of these features on a Macan requires buyers to check costly options boxes when it comes to items like automatic emergency braking, blind spot monitoring and lane-keeping assist. The Macan has not been crash tested by either the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration or the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.
Behind the Wheel
Regardless of what flavor you’re sampling, the Macan offers exceptional build quality and a true sports-car experience, despite that fact that it rides a little higher and is shaped a little differently than a vehicle like, say, the Cayman. The new-for-2019 10.9-in infotainment screen is certainly modern, and serves as the centerpiece to an all-around attractive center stack, which, in true Porsche fashion, is heavy on buttons while also maintaining a clean, sleek appearance. From the basic 4-cylinder all the way up to the Turbo, everything inside the Macan is high-grade. Back seat passengers may find themselves a little cramped though, as the Macan sacrifices room in its second row for in favor of a roomy cockpit up front.
Despite its SUV shape, the Macan is surprisingly Porsche when it comes to on-road driving. We’ve found the Macan to be confidence-inspiring at high speeds, and without question, it’s one of the most athletic crossovers on the market. Options like air suspension and a configurable sport exhaust are enticing, but even without them, the Macan offers a driving experience unlike that of any other luxury SUV. One thing we don’t recommend skimping on is safety, and getting all of the latest tech requires around $4,000 worth of options.
When it comes to picking a powertrain, the Macan S is probably as much power as most buyers need. With a 0-to-60 mph time of right around 5.0 seconds, hammering the pedal on a Macan S can be downright scary, leading us to wonder how anyone could yearn for a more powerful trim, but Porsche makes them available regardless. Across the lineup, the Macan’s dual-clutch seven-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive system do not disappoint
Other Cars to Consider
2019 Audi SQ5 — The performance-oriented SQ5 comes with a supercharged 354-hp V6, and serves to bridge the gap between basic versions of the Q5, the Macan and the Macan S. If space is what you’re after, you’ll find more in the SQ5 than you will in a Macan.
2019 Jagaur F-Pace — Jaguar’s compact SUV undercuts the Macan where it matters most – price. The most powerful variant, the S AWD model, comes with a supercharged 3.0-liter V6 making 380 hp, and is roughly $5,000 less expensive than a comparably-equipped Macan.
Used Porsche Cayenne — A used Cayenne from the 2015-2018 model years will offer more room and more power than a comparable Macan while costing about the same.
While the Macan Turbo is obviously the MVP of the group, every trim level in the Macan lineup is worthy of all star consideration. With the Macan, Porsche has managed to create a high-riding, AWD equipped compact SUV worthy of the Porsche name. If deep down you want a sports car, but can’t justify the sacrifices with regard to practicality and passenger space, you’ll likely find a lot to love about the 2019 Porsche Macan. Find a Porsche Macan for sale