It's all about cybersecurity.
Despite Porsche reassuring the automotive media it does not view the Tesla Model S as a direct competitor to its upcoming Taycan, the reality is that both all-electric luxury sedans will go head to head in the battle for customers. Audi's e-tron will soon follow. So it would be a mistake to assume Porsche in no way benchmarked the Model S because that's simply not the reality. And during that unofficial benchmarking, Porsche noticed something that gave Teslas trouble: a web browser built into the infotainment system. Could this still be something worthwhile to have in the Taycan despite some Tesla owner complaints of it being slow and unintuitive?
Speaking to Automotive News, Porsche's director of driver experience, Oliver Fritz, admitted the company considered adding a web browser but ultimately decided not to. What held Porsche back? Security concerns.
"Other OEMs offer web browsers with a lot of security on the back end," Fritz stated. "We don't think that's actually the way we want to go. If someone really wants to browse web pages, doing it on the smartphone probably is a better way."
This approach is probably for the best for safety reasons. Safety advocates are rightfully concerned this feature could become the source of distracted driving. To help counter this, the Taycan will offer drivers voice control and steering-wheel-mounted buttons. The EV's 16.8-inch instrument cluster has no physical buttons. Touch controls dominate instead. Drivers can also adjust various vehicle settings to their liking.
The 10.9-inch display built into the dash offers media and navigation control settings while a separate screen for the front passenger is optional. Even the Taycan's center console has an 8.4-inch panel with climate setting controls. The Taycan's cockpit also offers Netflix-type video streaming, according to Fritz.
"We are working on the video use case, but we want to make it safe," he added. But security remains Porsche's chief concern. The last thing it wants to see happen is for its first-ever EV to become a victim of hackers.