Porsche Performance Tour 2014: day one
For the first time, Porsche Cars Canada's Performance Tour visits the Vancouver area. The three-day event provides a driver experience focused on a handful of vehicles: the classic Porsche 911 Carrera S, the mid-engined Cayman and the brand new 2015 Porsche Macan luxury crossover SUV.
On the first day, guests gathered at Vancouver International Airport for introductions before setting off for the first group activity — offroading in the Macans at a special course in the Callaghan Valley region near Whistler. People piled in either the 400-horsepower Carrera or the 275-hp Cayman for the drive up (both equipped with Porsche's Doppelkupplung PDK dual-clutch transmission), testing out the suspension through twisty bits along the Sea-to-Sky Highway.
Once at the offroad course, there were a choice of Macans available: the S model with 340 hp/339 lb-ft of torque or the Turbo with 400 hp/406 lb-ft. Both tackled the steep hills, muddy dips and rock-covered surfaces admirably without any instances of anyone getting seriously stuck. That was partly due to the all-wheel drive system and gadgetry such as hill descent control (automatically slows the vehicle down on declines, allowing the driver to concentrate on steering) and an off-road mode (raises suspension height to give 9.1 inches of clearance, softens steering input, modifies torque distribution, etc.), but mostly it was because of the expert guidance of Porsche driving instructor Kees Nierop and his team.
Drivers paired up for the exercise and switched so that everyone got an opportunity to test out the crossover and all the new technologies. Afterwards, the Macans were shuttled back to a gathering spot and the drivers retired to Whistler for the evening to conclude the first day's activites. There's more to come, but here are some pictures to enjoy until then: