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The 2021 Porsche Taycan is a very, very expensive car. It’s a car where “base model” means $80,000 and up. While that’s not cheap, sometimes less is more. That’s exactly the case with the Taycan, insane as the Turbo S might be. Moreover, you can still have a fun, “Porsche-feeling” EV for less than the cost of a Tesla. What’s not to like?

While the base model does have some weaknesses, they’re ones that are very typical of an EV. Tesla and other manufacturers have the same problem (or did in many cases).

The 2021 Porsche Taycan is a fully electric supestar

The 2021 Porsche Taycan shot from the front 3/4 in a studio with frozen berry paint
The new Porsche Taycan in Frozen Berry paint | Porsche

Whether it’s base model or stupid-fast Turbo S CorssTurismo, the 2021 Porsche Taycan has made people change the way that they look at EVs. Now, an EV can truly be a performance item. Sure, Tesla did it first, as with many things EV, but Porsche made it feel real.

However, a fully loaded Taycan Turbo S CrossTurismo can easily run you north of $200,000 after options and delivery fees. A base model? Try half that. But is half off $200,000 really a bargain? In percentages, yes. And the base Taycan really is a bargain compared to its faster siblings. The 2021 Porsche Taycan starts at $81,250, per Car and Driver.

A base model Taycan does not a cheap car make

The interior of the Taycan, with cream leather seats and a pink dash
The Taycan’s all-new interior | Porsche

First, let’s address the AWD elephant in the room. The base 2021 Porsche Taycan is RWD-only. If you want AWD in a non-Turbo Taycan, that means stepping up to the $105,000 4S model. That, as the name implies, is the “base” AWD Taycan. However, the RWD base model is a set of snow tires away from being usable year-round.

And, last I checked, that’s cheaper than the roughly $20,000 jump between the two models. For your $81,250 you do get some strong power, at 375 hp and 250 lb-ft. While that’s a little low for an $80,000 car, you are paying for a lot of badge here. It’s certainly more unique than something like your boilerplate Tesla Model S.

The cheaper Porsche is better

A frozen berry Porsche Taycan EV shot from the rear 3/4 in a studio
The Porsche Taycan with optional wheels | Porsche

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In many ways (none of them related to horsepower), the base RWD Taycan is just as much of an option as the Turbo S, at nearly half the price. Range is a bit of a weak point, at 250 miles, but for Porsche’s target market, that’s more than enough for a weekend jaunt and the commute come Monday. Effectively what you’re doing (at any trim level) is trading Tesla range for something more engaging and unique.

The Taycan is the “driver’s EV” if you will. Porsche’s fantastic steering and suspension is just as good as it ever was here, and there’s even some wacky paint to choose from, like the Frozen Berry Metallic you see above. For some, that’s more than enough to pick a Taycan over a Tesla. Whether it’s enough to save yourself $100,000 over the Turbo S is entirely up to you.