The 2020 Taycan may be the hottest new luxury electric vehicle, but Porsche has a long road ahead if it plans to dethrone the Tesla Model S in the eyes of the buying public.
According to a consumer survey conducted by Autolist, Tesla still has the advantage when it comes to EV ownership (or even potential EV ownership). Of the 1,500 Americans surveyed, 45% of respondents picked the Model S as their likely purchase versus just 33% who would pick the all-new Porsche Taycan.
Respondents were asked to list the top three reasons for their choice of either the Model S or Taycan. The top two reasons for picking the Tesla were brand reputation (41%) and Model S performance (34%). Efficiency, styling, trust in Tesla's ability to build EVs and the existence of the Supercharger network all tied for third place at 24 percent.
Porsche fans, on the other hand, were far more focused in their responses. Brand reputation (59%), performance (46%) and exterior styling (37%) were the top three reasons given for choosing the German performance brand's first electric vehicle.
While it may seem to have been lost in the noise, it's still clear that one key to Tesla's advantage is its exclusive Supercharger network. While Porsche's 800-volt charging system may seem like a trump card, America's current fast-charging infrastructure is neither capable of delivering enough power to supply it nor prolific enough to be accessible to potential owners.
Tesla Supercharger site in Vacaville, California, before expansion [photo: George Parrott]
Porsche's "Turbo Charging" stations will be able to deliver the juice, but for the time being they will only be found at Porsche dealerships. In the wild, Taycan owners will have to settle for 400-volt solutions available at America's still-nascent fast-charging networks.
The survey was conducted prior to Wednesday's unveiling of the 2020 Porsche Taycan, so it's possible that greater exposure may change some buyers' minds. In the meantime, it's clear that Porsche is fighting an uphill battle against the best-selling electric vehicle brand.