It would be hard to find two more respected automakers than Tesla and Porsche. If you happen to be in the market for a high-end vehicle that offers you a high level of performance, which automaker should you choose? Here, we will compare both the Tesla and the Porsche brands in nine categories.
If you want a vehicle that emits zero emissions, is high tech and has an excellent resale value then Tesla is the best choice. However, if you want a classic gas-powered sports car that arouses all the senses and offers great dealer support, choose Porsche.
Both Tesla and Porsche offer compelling reasons to buy them. When considering purchasing from either automaker, be sure to consider everything from the price to the vehicle features and the dealership support. No matter which you choose, you are going to get a great performance.
Let’s take a closer look at each maker.
Founded in 2003 in San Carlos, CA, Tesla is the largest market for electric vehicles on the planet. Some of the most notable models from the automaker include the iconic Model S full-size sedan and the top-selling Model 3 small-sized sedan.
Based in Stuggart, Germany, Porsche is known as one of the top markets of performance vehicles. While the automaker has been known for its two-door sports cars such as the 911 for decades, the automaker has expanded its portfolio to include four-door performance sedans and performance SUVs.
Porsche vehicles are known for having some of the most iconic shapes on the road. For instance, the desirable 911 is one of the most recognized vehicles on the planet. Every single vehicle that Porsche makes offers dramatic styling that makes it easy to recognize from the rest of the vehicles on the road.
Tesla vehicles are known for their clean and aerodynamic looks. While many people appreciate Tesla’s style, it’s not for everyone. If you are looking for a style that is more dramatic and iconic, then you will want to consider a Porsche.
Porsche has been expanding its model selection for the past decade. In the two-door sports car category, you have the 911 and the 718. There is also a convertible version of the 911 and the Cayman roadsters. Porsche also offers four-door sedans such as the Panamera and the electrified Taycan. Finally, Porsche’s SUV model includes the Cayenne and the Cayman.
Tesla has four models in its current line-up including the Model 3, Model S, Model X, Model Y. Future models include the Cybertruck and a new Tesla Roadster is coming. In all, you will find more variety from Porsche versus Tesla.
Porsche has made its name known with performance. For decades, the Porsche 911 has been considered one of the best accelerating and handling vehicles on the road. Since Porsche has expanded their model selection, the company’s overall performance numbers have been diluted by the base model SUVs and lower cost coupes.
Tesla’s CEO Elon Musk brags that the company, “does not make slow cars.” And this is true in every sense. From the Model 3 to the Model S, the EV motors of these vehicles make them supercar fast. In fact, the four-door Model S Performance can easily rival most Porsche 911 offerings.
Porsche is primarily known for its performance. Therefore, you are not going to find the latest tech in their vehicles. That being said. You will find some high-grade features such as leading infotainment screens, wireless phone charging, and Apple CarPlay & Android Auto integration.
Tesla is literally generations ahead of the competition when it comes to its tech features. The vehicle’s touchscreens are unrivaled. Also, the company’s over-the-air updates provide continuous improvements for the vehicles.
Porsche vehicles have adequate safety features on all of their models. However, the company is not known for any innovative or leading safety features. Needless to say, Porsche vehicles will have enough standard safety equipment to give you peace of mind.
Tesla vehicles have set records when it comes to safety testing from the National Highways Traffic & Safety Administration. In fact, the Tesla Model 3 is the safest vehicle ever tested by the NHTSA.
Porsche has an excellent dealership network and you should have no problem getting routine service and repairs done locally. If you need to have a 911 repaired, then it may have to be shipped to Stuggart. Also, you should be able to get many OEM Porsche parts at the dealership.
Since Tesla has no dealership network, you will have to take a few extra steps when it comes to service and repairs. This can be a pain if your vehicle is not operational or if you need Tesla OEM parts. In this case, Porsche is the clear winner.
Porsche is known for making high-quality vehicles. From the high-end Porsche 911 Turbo S to the entry-level Porsche Macan small SUV, you can be sure that you are getting quality build construction.
Tesla has had its issues when it comes to building quality. Some Tesla owners have complained about loose-fitting panels, poor paintwork, and cheap-looking materials on the interior.
If you are looking for a bargain, you are not going to find it when it comes to Porsche. This is especially true if you are looking at the 911 models where options can exceed the sticker price of the vehicle. You will find a little more value in the Macan and 718 models. However, you are still going to pay a pretty penny.
By comparison, Tesla vehicles are a relative bargain. For instance, you can get a fully specced out Model S for about $65,000 before the Federal Tax Credit. Even a fully equipped Model S is going to cost about the same as a modestly equipped 911 coupe. Compared to Porsche, Tesla vehicles are quite good value.
The resale value of a Porsche is going to depend on the model. For instance, 911 coupes tend to hold their value relatively well while the Cayenne and the Macan SUVs tend to have poor resale value. Other models such as the 718, Panamera, and the Cayman have decent resale value.
Shockingly, Tesla vehicles have been known to appreciate over time. As an example, a 2017 Model 3 sells for $45,000 which is $10,000 over its original purchase price. Tesla vehicles maintain a high resale value due to the vehicle’s over-the-air updates and intense consumer demand.
If you are looking for a classic sports car that gives you that traditional engine sound and feel, then you will want a Porsche. Also, if you are looking for a convertible or a roadster, you are better off getting a Porsche.
When you want a vehicle with top performance along with leading safety and tech features, then a Tesla will be best for you. Also, Tesla vehicles will hold their value extremely well when it comes time to resell or trade them in.
The One I’d Buy
I’m an auto technician and I’ve been a car nut forever. I know EV’s are going to be a large part of the future of transport. Driving a Tesla is exciting, it’s blisteringly fast. The Porsche is no slouch either but doesn’t come close to the Tesla over short distances. But I can’t help feel there’s something missing when I drive a Tesla. It lacks one sensation – sound.
The soundtrack in the background is important at least to me. It offers another connection to the vehicle and helps the driver sync with the vehicle at a mechanical level. Try watching the classic Jaws movie scene with the sound off – just doesn’t work.
The Porsche excels in the handling department too. It’s planted in the corners and there’s an exhilarating and satisfying feeling of nailing it correctly. The Tesla is more of a slow in, reposition and fast out approach to cornering – much less satisfying.
Now that I’ve gotten that off my chest, you can guess which car I’d buy. These two major differences may not be on the radar for many buyers, I get that. But as you are considering a Porsche, I’m guessing you too like your car to be more about the journey than the destination.
I advise driving both before committing, especially on a twisty driver’s road. Both cars are great, and there’s no wrong answer, it’s about what you want from your car.
You may find the following posts helpful also:
- About the Author
- Latest Posts
John Cunningham is an Automotive Technician and writer on Rustyautos.com. He’s been a mechanic for over twenty-five years and has worked for GM, Volvo, Volkswagen, Land Rover, and Jaguar dealerships.
John uses his know-how and experience to write fluff-free articles that help fellow gearheads with all aspects of vehicle ownership, including maintenance, repair, and troubleshooting.