Through the years I think I’ve driven every Cayenne variant available; hybrid, plug-in, diesel, Turbo S, you name it. And I’ve always come away with a healthy appreciation of its on-road performance and admired its air of exclusivity. With MSRPs nearing and sometimes crossing well into the 6 figure realm the Cayenne, like all Porsche vehicles, is reserved for a select few.
This all-new model introduces a host of changes and tweaks both inside and out but in typical Porsche fashion, progress is achieved less conspicuously. At first glance this Cayenne looks very familiar and Porsche likes it that way. Yes, it’s longer, features staggered-width tires for the first time and sports a lightweight aluminum body but in no way does not advertise “new.” Only those who closely follow the autos scene will know that you’ve got the new Cayenne. In a hot segment awash with head turners, this midnight blue Cayenne S blends right in with the crowd.
Following the Panamera’s playbook, the 3.6 V6 has been replaced by the 2.9-liter twin-turbo with a hot V configuration. So the Cayenne S continues to see its engine shrink with each successive redesign though counterbalanced with greater ouput. This one generates 434 horsepower and 405 pound-feet of torque – similar specs to before – resulting in a quick yet very business-like 0-to-60mph time of 4.6 seconds when equipped with the optional Sport Chrono Package. Despite the aluminum diet which has shaved off 143 pounds, this Cayenne S returns the same 20mpg in combined driving as the previous model but with a much reduced driving range of 474 miles due to a smaller gas tank. Premium, of course.