Porsche Drive subscription service expands, adds new tiers

While some other such services seem to be folding, Porsche is doubling down

Porsche announced early Tuesday that its subscription service, now dubbed "Porsche Drive," is getting an overhaul. Soon, customers in Los Angeles will be able to join the multi-vehicle subscription service Porsche started back in November 2017 with a pilot program in Atlanta. In addition, Porsche will expand the offerings available to customers, especially those who prefer to keep a single vehicle for longer periods. 

Porsche will now offer Drive in three tiers: single-vehicle, multi-vehicle and rental. The single-vehicle option will be introduced to Drive's existing markets of Atlanta, Las Vegas (temporarily suspended due to COVID at the time of publication), Phoenix and San Diego, where the multi-vehicle subscription is already available. Los Angeles, which is new to the party, will have access to all three tiers from the get-go. 

The single-vehicle subscription will set you back at least $1,500 per month, but it varies based on the model you choose; a 911 will set you back $2,600 for each 30-day period, and no, we're not talking about one of the fancy ones; the humble Macan is the cheapest option at $1,500/mo. With this plan, you can swap every 30 or 90 days, whichever you prefer, and like leases, the cars have mileage caps (1,500 per month). The 718 Boxster and Cayman, Cayenne and Panamera round out the rest of the offerings. 

Rentals are pretty much exactly what they sound like. As with the single-vehicle setup, pricing is dependent on the model you want, with the Macan starting at $245/day. Yes, the 911 is available with this program, but it'll cost you almost double ($395) what you'll pay for Porsche's baby SUV. Rentals of four days or longer have a cheaper daily rate, but even then it's not exactly a bargain. 

Aside from its expansion into the Los Angeles market, the multi-vehicle exchange option for Drive remains essentially unchanged. This subscription will set you back $2,100 a month for Porsche's more pedestrian models or $3,100 if you even want to think about a 911, and all swaps are arranged via Porsche's app. This tier is a bit more forgiving in terms of mileage, allowing you to accumulate 2,000 per month across whichever vehicles you happen to choose.

Participation in these programs requires living in a ZIP code within 50 miles of a participating market, but note that the delivery radius is smaller than that; if you live out in the boonies, you'll have to travel to do your swaps. The same applies for service, though that shouldn't be a big deal for most subscribers, as routine maintenance will be handled between loans. If an unexpected issue arises, the customer should contact their Drive dealer to have it taken care of. 

Note that while both of these services allow you access to Porsche's flagship sports car, you're not going to be scoring GT3s and Turbos as short-term rentals; for that, you need to look for a more permanent sales arrangement. In fact, regardless of what level you choose, Porsche's tier-one offerings are excluded. Nor is the Taycan available yet due to production constraints, however, Porsche says it will join the platform some time in 2021. Details, including the tiers in which it will be offered, are expected next year. 

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