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Porsche - From the race track to daily life.
From the race track to daily life.
 

Everyday check with racing driver Christina Nielsen and the Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo.

The Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo shows why we call the electrification of our Porsche sports car E-Performance. It is the strongest Panamera ever engineered with 680 hp. And not despite the electric motor and battery on board – but precisely because of it. Can this power pack excite one of North America’s best racing drivers? We find out. Both on the circuit and where the toughest challenges for a sports car lie in wait: in everyday life.

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Challenge accepted.

Christina Nielsen was fired up with our unique proposition: a day-long test drive in the Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo in two locations. First in a sporty sprint on the Jyllands-Ringen circuit and again in a relaxed detour through the city center of Aarhus. The 26-year-old Dane, born in Copenhagen and now living in Los Angeles, loves Porsche. And experiments like this.

Since 2015, she has raced in the GTD class at the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship (IWSC), the premier American sports car racing series. In her first year competing, she finished second. In both years after, she was able to secure the drivers title as the first woman in North America.

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"I am not a woman who drives in races. I am a racing driver who is a woman."

Her goals remain ambitious. In the long term, she wants to become a Porsche works driver – which would also make her the first woman to do so. She has already completed the next step on the way to reaching this goal: as a Porsche Selected Driver, she has already fulfilled the dream of racing at the 24h of Le Mans. With a debut class finish of sixth place, she has the necessary perseverance. For her, it’s not about short-lived coups, but long-term success. Does the fact that she’s a woman make a difference? Quite the opposite: Christina Nielsen wants to show that drivers should only be judged on their performance. "Don't judge me just because I'm a woman."

High performance.

What counts on the circuit? Facts. This is where the Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo makes a clear statement. When it comes to under the hood capabilities, handling agility, 4+1 seats, four doors and 15 cu ft of luggage compartment space (45.7 cu ft. with seats folded down), it surpasses Christina’s racing machine. With its combustion engine optimized for lap timing, the 911 GT3 R reaches 500 hp, while the Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo – thanks to its combination of a 4.0-liter V-8 twin-turbo engine and an electric motor – delivers an impressive 680 hp of power on the road. The Panamera wins the race before it even begins. Nielsen couldn’t agree more.

Porsche - From the race track to daily life. Porsche - From the race track to daily life. Porsche - From the race track to daily life.

Even though at first she only carefully touched the edges on the Jyllands-Ringen – probably above all to spare our photographer's nerves – she quickly gains confidence in the chassis of the Panamera: “I am surprised how quickly it reacts to the steering. I never thought that such a big car could be so agile”. So it's no doubt that her 911 GT3 R and the Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo have the same genes: sports car DNA. The differences in handling – where the race car rigorously punishes mistakes – the sedan is clearly more forgiving and always feels more connected to the road. It’s not hard to believe technology: in the form of its hybrid concept, inspired by the 919 Hybrid – a race car which boasts three victories at the long-distance classic at Le Mans as part of its win record.

"Every Porsche is a sports car – just with four doors."

Porsche - From the race track to daily life. Porsche - From the race track to daily life. Porsche - From the race track to daily life.

So is it an option for the racing driver? When it comes to sports car genes, it certainly passes the test. But Christina already lives out her passion for racing on the weekend. So her private car must offer more than performance and driving pleasure. Comfort and everyday use cannot be neglected. The fact that the Panamera does not have to hide in these respects is proven on the trip to Aarhus. Her helmet and sports bag in the trunk and off we go.

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Aarhus has experienced a real boom in recent years. The city has developed into one of Scandinavia’s creative hotspots. Its universities attract the entrepreneurs of tomorrow, famous Danish and international companies have their headquarters in Aarhus. The population increases year on year. The city’s port has developed into the largest container port in Denmark and can also welcome cruise giants from all over the world. A change which can be seen in the city. Small, cosy, traditional Scandinavian-style houses alternate with modern architecture which represents the new Scandinavia with its clear style. A city that thrives on the power of contrasts. Just like the Panamera.

It combines loud and quiet, performance and efficiency. While Christina still makes the V8 of the Panamera hiss on the Jyllands-Ringen, she now glides confidently across the country roads towards Denmark's second largest city and the home of her best friend from her university days. In E-Power mode, the all-electric mode, she then drives the hybrid through the city, accompanied only by a whisper from the electric motor – free of emissions.

Home is where the heart is.

In Aarhus, this type of mobility has long been part of everyday life. Charging pedestals for electric cars can be found all across the city. Even autonomous driving is no longer a vision of the future, at least in the car park. The driver pulls the car into one of the parking bays and gets out – the rest is performed by robots in the basement. Christina is proud that the Danes are so open to progress. There are no dreamers at work here, but Scandinavian pragmatists with foresight and a clear vision.

Porsche - From the race track to daily life. Porsche - From the race track to daily life. Porsche - From the race track to daily life.
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To recharge her own batteries, Christina doesn’t need much: a bit of sun, her friends and her mother’s cooking. For the sun – and her career – she moved to Los Angeles. For family, she always comes back to Denmark. Is the Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo the right companion for these short trips home? Christina doesn't even have to answer that question. Instead, she briefly presses the accelerator again and, smiling, heads to the next appointment.

"To me, courage means: To not be afraid of stepping out of your comfort zone, having the strength to take the first step forward and always aiming as high as you can. Porsche has achieved this perfectly with the Panamera."

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