2022 Porsche Macan Review

Christian Wardlaw, Independent Expert | May 19, 2022

Introduction - Find the best Porsche deals!

Porsche is known for building legendary sports cars, but the automaker's SUV sales keep the lights on and the assembly lines moving. Following the successful launch of the midsize Cayenne, Porsche developed a second sport/utility vehicle that would blend its reputation for crafting industry-leading performance vehicles with a lower, more accessible price than the Cayenne.

Enter the Porsche Macan.

The small Macan SUV went on sale for the 2015 model year, and now the 2022 Porsche Macan gets a refresh. Updated styling, new wheel designs in larger standard sizes, a revised center console with new touch-sensing controls, and more potent engines summarize the changes.

You can choose the standard Macan, the more powerful Macan S, and the even more powerful Macan GTS. Each of these 2022 Macan models also has more standard equipment than last year.

What Owners Say About the Porsche Macan - Find the best Porsche deals!

2022 Porsche Macan S Volcano Gray Front Quarter View

Photo: Christian Wardlaw

According to data collected from verified owners for the J.D Power 2021 Automotive Performance, Execution and Layout (APEAL) Study, 70% of Porsche Macan owners are male (vs. 53% for the Compact Premium SUV segment), and the median age of a Macan owner is 64 years (vs. 60).

Owners have ranked the Macan in 10 primary areas of evaluation. Listed below in descending order, you'll find their preferences, from their favorite thing about the vehicle to their least favorite thing:

  • Exterior styling
  • Driving feel
  • Powertrain
  • Feeling of safety
  • Interior design
  • Driving comfort
  • Setting up and starting
  • Getting in and out
  • Infotainment system
  • Fuel economy

In the J.D. Power 2021 APEAL Study, the Macan ranked second out of 12 Compact Premium SUVs.

What Our Independent Expert Says About the Porsche Macan - Find the best Porsche deals!

In the sections that follow, our independent expert provides an analysis of a 2022 Macan S equipped with the following options:

  • Volcano Gray paint
  • 21-inch RS Spyder Design wheels
  • Premium Package Plus
  • Leather Package
  • Sport Chrono Package
  • Porsche Torque Vectoring Plus
  • Porsche Surface Coated Brakes 
  • Adaptive air suspension
  • Heated steering wheel
  • Wireless smartphone charging
  • Smoking Package

The price of the test vehicle came to $87,670, including the $1,450 destination charge.

Getting In and Getting Comfortable

2022 Porsche Macan S Front Seats Red Leather

Photo: Christian Wardlaw

Open the 2022 Macan's driver's door, and you're treated to a cabin that adheres to Porsche's interior design ethos. Simple gauges with a large, center-mounted tachometer live beneath a shroud shaped to match the top of the steering wheel. Aside from the chronograph living above the infotainment display, the instrumentation represents the only break from the Macan's no-nonsense, T-shaped dashboard and new center console.

Getting in is relatively easy despite the small doors, and once you're inside, you'll find standard 8-way power-adjustable and heated front seats. In addition, the test vehicle's Premium Package added ventilated front and heated rear seat cushions. The Macan test model also had upgraded 14-way power-adjustable seats with memory for the driver's settings.

Seat comfort is excellent, and the evaluation vehicle's Bordeaux Red over Black leather was smooth and supple. However, if you plan to explore a Macan's handling capabilities, I recommend getting the Adaptive Sport Seats Plus, which likely do a better job of holding you in place. In addition, I did not like the shape of the Macan's steering wheel, which seems a little thin and has a sharply radiused leading edge that is uncomfortable to grip.

Twist the engine start switch to the left of the steering wheel, and the Macan rumbles to life, illuminating the infotainment system and the new touch-sensing, haptic feedback buttons on the center console. Unfortunately, they're embedded into a gloss-black surface, and glare is sometimes an issue. Also, it doesn't seem the best idea to ask a driver to look so far away from the road to adjust the climate, safety system, and driving character settings.

Porsche says the new center console adds storage space, a small tray forward of the cupholders. It's a good place to put the Macan's key fob or a set of house keys. Unfortunately, the optional wireless smartphone charger takes up precious room inside the bin under the sliding center armrest. Otherwise, storage is limited to door panel bins and the glove compartment.

The Porsche Macan's interior is small, but it can serve a family of four if you're not tall. I'm six feet in height, so my 11-year-old was not very happy about riding behind me in the Macan's cramped back seat. When I attempted to get in with the driver's seat in my preferred position, I had to splay my legs around the sides of the seatback. Aside from that, however, the seat itself was comfortable, and getting in and out was unexpectedly easy.

Most of the interior is dressed in quality materials, and the Macan's cabin conveys appropriate levels of luxury, technological advancement, and driver-focused minimalism. It's a neat trick to pull off. I did notice, however, that the plastic on the door sills looks awfully shiny in bright sunlight.

Porsche Communication Management Infotainment System Review

2022 Porsche Macan S Interior Dashboard Red Leather

Photo: Christian Wardlaw

Porsche Communication Management (PCM) is what the automaker calls its infotainment system. In the 2022 Macan, PCM includes the following features:

  • A high-definition 10.9-inch touchscreen display
  • Wireless Apple CarPlay
  • Satellite radio (with a three-month complimentary trial subscription)
  • Navigation system
  • Porsche Car Connect services
  • Connect Plus with Wi-Fi

Additionally, Macan buyers can upgrade the standard 10-speaker sound system with available Bose and Burmester premium audio systems. The test vehicle had the Bose surround-sound speakers, which are satisfactory unless you're a true audiophile seeking the high-end components from Burmester.

In pursuit of minimalism, PCM shows a top layer of main menus while a secondary layer of selections appears when you bring your fingertips up to the proximity sensing screen. Unfortunately, the icons Porsche uses are not always intuitive. Still, like most infotainment systems, you can figure out how to use PCM and configure the different settings relatively quickly.

Better yet, the PCM includes a stereo power/volume knob flanked by haptic, touch-sensing buttons that allow you to easily tune the radio up or down without resorting to using the station list or the voice recognition system. I wish more automakers would take this approach.

The Macan's voice recognition system doesn't accept naturally spoken commands and queries like Siri does on an iPhone, so it responded quickly and accurately to my standard set of voice prompts about half the time. Finding a local hospital and getting directions to the White House required adjusting how I made those requests. In addition, I couldn't get directions to a favorite local restaurant using only the name of the establishment and the road on which it is located. 

Also, you cannot adjust the climate control or activate the seat heaters or ventilators using voice commands. Adding this ability would help to reduce driver distraction related to the controls on the center console.

What It's Like to Drive the 2022 Porsche Macan?

2022 Porsche Macan S Volcano Gray Side View

Photo: Christian Wardlaw

As you might have already guessed, the short answer to this question is "fun!" In fact, the Macan S, with its optional equipment, was an outright blast to drive on the roads laced across the Santa Monica Mountains near Los Angeles. If that's what you seek in an SUV, the Porsche Macan delivers.

If you choose the standard 2022 Macan, you'll get a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine making 261 horsepower (between 5,000 and 6,500 rpm) and 295 pound-feet of torque (from 1,800 to 4,500 rpm). Compared to last year, these figures represent 13 hp and 22 lb-ft increases. Get the optional Sport Chrono Package, and 60 mph arrives in 5.8 seconds. Skip that upgrade, and the Macan makes the same run in 6.1 seconds. The top speed is 144 mph.

All Macans have a 7-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission, fully variable active all-wheel drive, and Normal, Sport, and Sport Plus driving modes. 

Upgrade to the Macan S for a twin-turbocharged 2.9-liter V6 supplying 375 hp (5,200 rpm to 6,700 rpm) and 383 lb-ft of torque (1,850 rpm to 5,000 rpm). This engine was standard in last year's Macan GTS and is new to the S trim. Porsche says the Macan S hits 60 mph in 4.4 seconds (4.6 without the Sport Chrono Package) on the way to a top speed of 160 mph. In addition, Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM) is newly standard for this model.

For 2022, the Macan GTS has the same twin-turbo V6, but it's tuned to deliver 434 hp (5,700 rpm to 6,600 rpm) and 405 lb-ft (1,900 rpm to 5,600 rpm). That is the same spec as last year's range-topping Macan Turbo, which Porsche discontinued for 2022. Acceleration to 60 mph takes 4.1 seconds (4.3 without Sport Chrono), and the Macan GTS will hit a claimed 169 mph. 

Additionally, the GTS trim gets Porsche Surface Coated Brakes (PSCB), and an adaptive air suspension with a 10mm drop and revised calibration for improved stiffness. Furthermore, a new Sport Package is available for the GTS with revised styling, the Sport Chrono Package, Porsche Torque Vectoring Plus (PTV+), and other elements.

The Macan S test vehicle had all of the go-faster goodies: Sport Chrono Package, PTV+, PSCB, and the adaptive air suspension paired with huge 21-inch RS Spyder Design wheels wrapped in staggered-width Michelin Latitude Sport S tires. Usually, the intricate wheels would be a nightmare to clean, but not with PSCB.

Porsche Surface Coated Brakes help extend the brakes' life, but they also cut down on brake dust. After spraying the wheels down, I cleaned them and could hardly believe how clean the rag I used was after wiping all four wheels down.

Since I haven't driven a Macan before, I'm not sure if the brake pedal feel and response is related to the optional PSCB. Typically, performance vehicles have brakes that respond immediately and with urgency. The Macan S did not behave that way. Instead, to coax a significant response, you must press harder than you expect on the brake pedal. It takes a few miles and minutes to adjust if you're new to a Macan with PSCB. But then you won't have any trouble.

They withstand significant abuse, too. Running the Macan S hard on Deer Creek Canyon road north of Malibu, the brakes suffered no hint of fade despite repeated use while descending from elevation. Equally impressive, on the trip up to the road's crest, the Porsche Torque Vectoring Plus system was more pronounced when powering out of corners and curves than any torque-vectoring AWD I've ever experienced.

Likewise, while traveling briskly on Mulholland Highway, the adaptive air suspension expertly managed and effectively eliminated excess body motion and roll, making the Macan feel more like a sports car than a sport/utility. Of course, you're still aware that you're sitting higher and driving a vehicle with a taller center of gravity than, say, a Porsche 718 Cayman. But compared to nearly any rival in its class, the Macan sets standards for ride, handling, and performance.

However, unlike Porsche's 718 and 911 sports cars, which use mid- or rear-mounted engines and offer flat-six powerplants with a distinctive note and feel, the Macan's conventional powertrain and layout make it harder for the automaker to differentiate the SUV from competitors. When you drive a Boxster, a Cayman, or a Carrera, you're obviously behind the wheel of something special. That is less true of the Macan.

Still, you'll also find it nearly impossible to find a better-performing SUV at the Macan's price.

2022 Porsche Macan Driving Assistance Technology Review

2022 Porsche Macan S Lane Departure Warning System

Photo: Christian Wardlaw

Porsches are about driving. Unsurprisingly, the 2022 Macan is equipped with only the basics as far as advanced driving assistance systems (ADAS) are concerned.

This year, lane-departure warning is newly standard on all Macans. It joins forward-collision warning, automatic emergency braking, and adaptive cruise control to comprise the standard package of ADAS. Additionally, all 2022 Macan models have front and rear parking sensors.

Lane Change Assist with blind-spot warning is an option, and it does not include rear cross-traffic warning, so be aware when reversing. This feature is part of the Premium Package, or you can add it as a standalone upgrade. The test car had Lane Change Assist.

Lane Keep Assist is also optional, and it can steer the Macan away from lane markings when the driver allows the SUV to drift without using a turn signal to indicate a lane change. Self-steering Park Assist is another extra-cost upgrade, adding semi-autonomous steering assistance when parking the Macan in parallel and perpendicular spaces. Unfortunately, the test car did not have these upgrades.

During testing, the lane-departure warning system worked well, and it emits a subtle audible warning unlike anything we've experienced in other vehicles. As a result, it gets your attention but doesn't startle or irritate you. And that means you're more likely to use it.

2022 Porsche Macan FAQ - Find the best Porsche deals!

2022 Porsche Macan S Cargo Space

Photo: Christian Wardlaw

How much cargo space does the 2022 Porsche Macan have?

The Macan is small, and it has a tapered roofline and rakish rear window similar to SUV coupes. This cuts into cargo space behind the back seat, which measures 17.2 cubic feet. That volume measures a little more than the trunk of a typical midsize family sedan. If you fold the back seats down, though, the space expands to 53 cu-ft.

Does the 2022 Porsche Macan get good gas mileage?

For an SUV of this size, the answer is no. But, if you want great gas mileage, you're likely not shopping for a Porsche. With the standard engine, the official EPA fuel economy rating for the Macan is 21 mpg in combined driving. However, that number drops to 19 mpg with the Macan S and GTS.

The Macan S test vehicle returned 18.1 mpg on the evaluation route. Based on this result, and with its 17.1-gallon tank, the Macan S should travel 309 miles on a full gas tank.

Is the 2022 Porsche Macan safe?

Unfortunately, neither the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) nor the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has performed crash-test assessments of the Porsche Macan. Therefore, the answer to this question is unknown. It is worth noting that blind-spot warning, a driver assistance feature that people like and find helpful, is optional instead of standard.

How much is the 2022 Porsche Macan?

For 2022, Porsche Macan prices range from $57,500 to $82,900, not including $1,450 to pay for the shipping charge from the Leipzig, Germany, factory that builds it to your local dealership. Porsche offers a seemingly endless list of options for the Macan, and it is easy to surpass the $100,000 mark if you're not careful.

What are the 2022 Porsche Macan competitors?

In the J.D. Power 2021 Initial Quality Study (IQS), the BMW X4 ranked highest in the Compact Premium SUV segment. The Lincoln Corsair and the Porsche Macan were the next highest-ranked models. 

In the J.D. Power 2021 Automotive Performance, Execution, and Layout Study (APEAL), the BMW X4 ranked highest in the Compact Premium SUV segment. The Porsche Macan and the BMW X3 were the next highest-ranked models.

Other competitors to the 2022 Macan include the Alfa Romeo Stelvio, Audi Q5, and Mercedes-Benz GLC.

Independent Expert Opinion - Find the best Porsche deals!

2022 Porsche Macan S Volcano Gray Rear Quarter View

Photo: Christian Wardlaw

Porsches are expensive, but for a good reason. If you're seeking the cachet of a storied and respected marque, Porsche delivers. If you want to enjoy every drive and feel a thrill with every turn of the steering wheel, Porsche delivers. If you demand engineering excellence coupled with peerless quality, Porsche delivers. But these things aren't free. And since Porsche supplies all of these traits, and more, in every vehicle it makes, the small but mighty Macan commands a large and mighty sum of money.

Viewed within this context, if you accept that you're going to have to pay for what you're going to get, the Porsche Macan makes sense for specific kinds of people. 

You might even find value where most luxury SUV buyers will not.

Christian Wardlaw is a veteran digital automotive journalist with nearly 30 years of experience in test-driving vehicles. He has held editorial leadership roles with Edmunds, J.D. Power, the New York Daily News, and others. In addition to JDPower.com, his work has appeared in numerous new- and used-car buying guides, newspapers, and automotive industry trade journals, including Autotrader, Capital One Auto Navigator, CarGurus, Kelley Blue Book, WardsAuto, and more.

The opinions expressed in this review are the author’s own, not J.D. Power’s.

No portion of these reviews may be reproduced, distributed, publicly displayed, or used for a derivative work without J.D. Power’s written permission. © 2022 J.D. Power

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