After driving a 2020 Porsche Macan around the island of Oahu for a day, I finally get it. I now (after all these years) understand why this is such a popular SUV.
Although I don’t think it looks all that great, I can say with a completely straight face that the 2020 Macan is an SUV that drives like a sports car. The seating position is very low, it goes around corners better than you would think, and it’s actually kind of fast.
If there’s one thing to take away from this review, it’s this: I just wish it didn’t look like such a stinkin’ turd.
My fully unfiltered review of the 2020 Porsche Macan
I realize that I’m a bit late to the game. There are already tons of other really great 2020 Macan reviews out there, but stick with me for a moment. This isn’t going to be like all the rest. Basically, I don’t have any corporate sponsors, and I can say whatever the frick I want without fear of repercussions. Some of what I have to say is going to be brutal.
Honestly, I’m not all that much of a fan of how Porsche extended its design language (which works so well on the 911) to the SUV. It just doesn’t work in my opinion. The overall shape of the Macan is too rounded and bulbous for my liking, and quite frankly, I think it looks like a cheap Volkswagen.
Thankfully, the 2020 Macan is fast enough for me to forgive how ugly it is. The 2.0 L four-cylinder turbocharged engine (248 hp / 273 pound-feet of torque) puts out a lot more grunt than I expected it would. It’s powerful, and (dare I say it), fast. Nay, it’s freaking fast.
Turbo lag is nonexistent, and the power comes rolling in at nearly any RPM. It’ll put you back in your seat.
Mated to the engine is a 7-speed “automated manual” transmission. Shifts are merely instant, and the reverberation in the exhaust on every upshift is hypnotic.
This is the part of the review that really trips me out. Porsche is always been known for mass producing well-handling vehicles, but I never expected it to translate so well into an SUV platform. The 2020 Macan attacks corners with more confidence than even my 2012 Ford Mustang GT does, and that straight up ticks me off.
The Macan attacks corners flat, composed, and it seems to encourage me to push harder. How the heck did Porsche make a 5,500 pound SUV feel so nimble?
As much as I have poo-poo’d on the exterior of the Macan in this review so far, I’m not afraid to admit that the interior is downright beautiful. The steering wheel (and the dashboard it is attached to) is unmistakably Porsche. The seats feel luxurious – yet firm enough for spirited driving. Most importantly, build quality seems excellent.
The Macan has the kind of interior that I like in a good road tripping car. It’s spacious, comfortable, and fairly quiet. It even looks great.
The driving experience
Driving any Porsche tends to be a memorable experience. This even applies to the 2020 Macan. The driving position is so low and the steering wheel so small that you’ll totally forget that you’re driving a big honkin’ SUV.
Aggressive sports car styling comes at a cost though. This will become apparent as soon as you drive the 2020 Macan in heavy traffic. The blind spots from the thick A, B, and C pillars are horrendous. Porsche should be embarrassed to have produced an SUV that is so difficult to see out of.
I do like how easy it is to get in and out of the Macan. You don’t have to step up into it like you normally would for an SUV of the size. The experience is more like sitting down into a sports car. It’s weird. But I like it.
Thoughts about gas mileage
I put approximately 110 miles on the 2020 Macan that you see in these pictures. All of it was driving around the island of Oahu in Hawaii in various driving conditions. From high-speed highway pulls to gridlock traffic, I was able to experience at all.
At the end of the day, I had achieved an average of 22.5 miles per gallon. That’s not all that bad considering not only how heavy the Macan is, but also how aggressively I drove it. I say again: I finally understand why the Macan has been such a big hit for Porsche.
What’s the verdict? Should you buy one?
Before deciding if this is the right SUV for you, be sure to read my complete list of Porsche Macan pros and cons. It’s a deeper dive that goes into more detail about what it’s actually like to live with one of these things as a daily driver, so it’s definitely worth the read if you’re thinking about getting one of these things for yourself.
I walked away from the 2020 Macan feeling as if my mind about Porsche SUVs had been completely changed. I had no idea these things were so darn good.
The Macan basically changed me. Before driving it, I never gave them a second look. But now, knowing exactly how it handles all types of different driving conditions, I’m giving each one that I see a sexy bit of side eye (side eye that I normally only reserved for the 911). It really is a magnificent piece of automotive engineering.