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by Jay Traugott
In light of the sharp looks of the Range Rover Evoque, Porsche designers opted to make styling changes to the upcoming Macan.
It's no secret that Porsche has been at work for some time developing a smaller SUV built on the same platform as the Audi Q5. Meant to fill the model slot below the hot-selling Cayenne, Porsche knew it could have a major sales hit on its hands, but only if the packaging was right. The thing is, Porsche previously assumed that it could design the Macan to look like a shrunken Cayenne. That idea worked until Land Rover unveiled its sharply-styled Range Rover Evoque and Porsche realized that a redesign was needed even before the car debuted.
This news comes to us today from Automotive News Europe which quotes Porsche's design chief Michael Mauer, stating that "We thought there were some details we could be more daring with....When I saw the Evoque, I thought, interesting, I like it." The Evoque has been a solid success for Land Rover, and Porsche wants its own share of the pie in the hot-selling luxury compact crossover segment. But Mauer wants to be clear that the Macan will not be a copy of the Evoque, but instead will feature Porsche design elements that could even be taken from the Panamera Sport Turismo Concept that premiered at Paris in September.
Expect to see the Macan officially debut sometime in late 2013 as a '14 model. Engine options will likely include a version of the Q5's 3.0-liter turbocharged diesel with 300 horsepower and 480 pound-feet of torque as well as a few gasoline engine options.