Porsche Cayenne: The king of driver-friendly SUVs

Porsche Cayenne

Porsche’s Cayenne first “reared its shockingly ugly head” back in 2002, says Shane O’Donoghue in The Daily Telegraph. This latest version may seem like a subtle makeover of a familiar concept, but the car has actually undergone a comprehensive overhaul. The new version is more spacious within and the interior is “of tangibly higher quality”, with a high-tech and easy-to-use infotainment system. The car is lighter and more powerful, and employs “fiendishly clever” technology to make it “quicker and more capable than ever”. Indeed, “mere mortals” will never get
the most out of this car’s on and off-road abilities. Typical buyers will be more likely to be found ambling about in posh neighbourhoods than testing the car’s limits on empty B-roads. But they will love it nevertheless. The subtle exterior redesign means it even looks good now too.

Back in 2002 Porsche enthusiasts were horrified at the thought of their beloved brand building a Chelsea tractor, says Alan Taylor-Jones in What Car?. But the Cayenne has been a roaring success, and today no one bats an eyelid when sports-car makers produce hulking SUVs. The Cayenne remains one of Porsche’s most important cars, making up the majority of sales, and that’s why so much thought and effort has gone into this update. It remains a practical and luxurious family car, but the Cayenne has always really been about “putting the sport into SUV”. This new model will “get you down a challenging stretch of road ludicrously quickly – indeed, better than most of its rivals”. It’s an impressive achievement.

It’s “the king of driver-friendly SUVs”, agrees Top Gear. It drives “as if the road is being sucked beneath you like a crazy treadmill”, and there’s never enough road to really test the car’s abilities. Thanks to its “all-you-can-eat buffet of tech”, it feels like a sports car despite its bulk. This is a “very complete machine” that will provide “hours of laugh-out-loud fun”.

Price: from £55,965
Engine: 2,894cc, V6 bi-turbo petrol, four-wheel drive (Porsche Cayenne S model)
Power: 434bhp at 5,700-6,600rpm rpm
Torque: 405lb ft at 1,800-5,500rpm
Top speed: 164mph
0-62mph: 4.9 seconds
Fuel economy: 30.7mpg