Flush with cash from strong sales of its Cayenne SUV, Porsche is looking to expand beyond its sports car roots yet again with an all-new sedan. Revealed here in our exclusive spy video, this 2009 Porsche Panamera prototype was caught while undergoing early development tests prior to its launch in mid-2009.
It may be covered in heavy camouflage, but this prototype does give some hints to the overall shape of this front-engine, rear-wheel-drive sedan. Porsche is already calling the Panamera a four-door coupe much like Mercedes-Benz does with its sleek CLS sedan. This should assure a low, sloping roof for the Panamera and somewhat limited rear-seat passenger room compared to sedans of similar size.
Set for assembly at the same Leipzig factory as the Porsche Cayenne, the Panamera is expected to use the same lineup of V8 engines as the SUV. A top-of-the-line model could also utilize a retuned version of the V10 engine from the discontinued Carrera GT sports car. A dual-clutch setup similar to Audi’s DSG system is expected to be the sole transmission.
Expect to see the production version of the 2009 Porsche Panamera debut at the Geneva auto show in the spring of 2009, with sales beginning later that year.