Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Porsche Cayenne Review (2024) | Autocar

With a wealth of engineering changes underneath and visual updates to the body and interior, this Porsche Cayenne facelift isn’t one of those blink-and-you’ll-miss-it surgeries. The new LED matrix headlights are easy to spot (and, if you like, you can have high-definition ones at extra cost), while the new bumpers front and rear make for a fresh, slightly Macanish-looking widened grille, though with familiar proportions behind it.

Technically, the headline change is the removal from the Cayenne S of the 2.9-litre twin-turbocharged V6 that formerly powered it, substituted for an overhauled version of the ‘EA825’ 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8 that Porsche first developed with technical partner Audi in 2017. 

That leaves the entry-level Cayenne and the Cayenne E-Hybrid as the only six-cylinder models still in a showroom line-up, which, for now, consists of four models (Cayenne, Cayenne S, Cayenne E-Hybrid and Cayenne Turbo E-Hybrid, plus equivalent ‘coupés’). In time, we’ll see a Turbo, a GTS and a V8-powered Cayenne S E-Hybrid as well, the PHEVs set to account for more than three-quarters of the UK sales mix between them.

We won’t see a return of the range-topping Cayenne Turbo GT, which is being reserved for markets, shall we say, less carbon-emissions-punitive than the European Union and the UK. Go for the Cayenne Turbo E-Hybrid instead, however, and you can buy a GT package that makes your car look, ride and handle as much like the range-topping poster child as possible. Meantime, ‘making do’ with only 730bhp shouldn’t be too much of a chore.

Below that range-topping PHEV, there will be two further electrified models. The cheaper Cayenne E-Hybrid uses an overhauled V6 and a 174bhp electric motor, only now there’s a bigger battery to supply the juice. As such, electric-only range jumps to a handy 46 miles, dropping it into the 8% benefit-in-kind tax bracket. It’s a timely riposte to the Range Rover Sport’s company car appeal. The bad news? Kerb weight shoots up by 370kg over the base Cayenne.

And above that car will shortly come a Cayenne S E-Hybrid, using the same battery and motor technology but delivering a V8-engined electrified option for less than the Turbo E-Hybrid’s £130k-plus price. 

Outside of the engine bay, Porsche is continuing with steel coil suspension for lower-range Cayennes, with height-adjustable air springs optional on some and standard on others. New double-valved adaptive dampers (on which compression and rebound can be adjusted independently of each other) feature on all models, with front wheel and tyre size having changed slightly too – both, says Porsche, to the improvement of the car’s rolling refinement.

Four-wheel drive is standard on the Cayenne, downstream of an eight-speed torque-converter gearbox. Mechanical torque vectoring, four-wheel steering and active anti-roll bars, meanwhile, are optional on most models.


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