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Panamera Right Round Down UnderThe ultimate grand tour for Porsche’s new gran turismo

Porsche is planning the ultimate grand tour for its ultimate gran turismo to celebrate the Australian launch of the much-anticipated new Panamera model.

Porsche’s first four-door luxury performance car will be shown to the Australian public from September 01 with a 17,000 km full lap of mainland Australia, completing the epic journey on October 03 to coincide with the Panamera’s official on sale date.

Along the way the Panamera will retrace some of the route taken by the very first Porsche imported into Australia – a 356 Coupe – when it was showcased to the Australian public in the 1953 Redex Trial.

While the roads have changed dramatically since the 356’s arduous journey more than five decades ago, the link between the very first and the very latest Porsches is the same with both cars breaking new ground for the German sports car maker.

“Just as the 356 showcased Porsche to the Australian public, the new Panamera showcases the very latest in Porsche design, performance and technology,” says Porsche Cars Australia Managing Director, Michael Winkler.

“The Panamera combines true sports car performance with limousine luxury and comfort in a way no other car has ever done. It changes the perception of what a gran turismo can, and should, be. The Panamera is a new class of car.”

The Panamera is Porsche’s fourth model; joining the successful Cayenne SUV, Boxster/Cayman two-seaters and iconic 911.

Winkler says the Panamera will appeal to both new and existing Porsche customers: new customers that have always wanted a Porsche performance car but also the comfort and practicality of a luxury sedan, and those who already own a Porsche sports car but need a larger car for family and business use.

Potential customers throughout mainland Australia will be able to see the Panamera for the first time when two cars depart Melbourne on September 01. The pair will head west to Adelaide, then across the Nullarbor to Perth, up the west coast, across to Darwin, down to Alice Springs, then east to Cairns before hugging the coastal roads back down to Melbourne for the finish 33 days later.

The cars will be driven predominantly by motoring journalists and Porsche stalwarts such as Jim Richards as well as Porsche staff.

The Panamera brings many world-first technologies to the luxury performance car segment. These include the first automatic ‘start/stop’ engine system with a doubleclutch transmission, air suspension with additional air volume on demand, active aerodynamics with a multi-stage and adjustable rear spoiler, and a completely flat underfloor for improved stability and reduced fuel consumption.

Porsche expects the V8-powered Panameras to deliver low fuel consumption throughout the journey – confident of achieving an average well below 10L/100 kms.

Three Panamera models will go on sale initially: the rear-drive Panamera S with 294 kW direct-injection V8 engine, the all-wheel-drive 4S with the same engine, and the flagship all-wheel-drive Turbo version with 368 kW.

All models will come standard with Porsche’s acclaimed twin-clutch PDK transmission. “It’s not often that Porsche creates an all-new model from a clean sheet of paper, let alone one that redefines a segment the way the Panamera does,” says Winkler. “This is a very special car worthy of a special event to announce its arrival.”

People interested in following the Panamera’s epic adventure will be able to do so via a unique microsite with regular diary and photo updates.

14/8/2009