The Porsche Cayenne is the German brand’s largest high-rise performance car. Porsche calls the Cayenne the epitome of the sporty SUV, and most people, including us, have bought into it.
Porsche has refined the design and carried across some key styling from the Panamera sports-saloon-cum-five-door-coupe. The E-Hybrid adds a plug-in hybrid system to the mix, while the S model employs a V8.
Here you’ll find an SUV that’s almost as good to drive as many sports cars.
Performance heart-stopping in top-spec cars.
INTERIOR TECH AND LAYOUT
Get behind the wheel of the Porsche Cayenne and you’ll experience an interior very similar to that of the Taycan EV – albeit far further from the road. Everything you touch feels solid and well-made and there’s a pleasing fluidity and intuitiveness behind the controls.
There’s a large steering wheel that’s in use elsewhere in the Porsche range and a centre console that seems devoid of physical buttons for most of the controls. Instead, you press down on the surface, which responds with a satisfying click to select a function.
It takes a while to learn where it all is (there are many virtual buttons), but once mastered it’s a slick and attractive set-up.
The 12.3-inch infotainment display display is standard on all Cayennes and features super-crisp graphics with a highly responsive screen. Pinch-and-swipe capability similar to tablets is used to control the navigation mapping featuring real-time traffic information, while a suite of apps and functions are there to extend its functionality.
Apple CarPlay and Android Auto come as standard. If you download the Porsche Connect app you’re able to send sat-nav routes directly to your car, see how much fuel you have left and pre-heat the Cayenne for cold morning starts.
You have to remember that the Porsche Cayenne is designed to be a performance machine.
Thankfully the seats are beautifully made and wonderfully cosseting. The electric settings allow you to find a decent driving position within seconds and you don’t have to spend an age trying to adjust the steering wheel either.
A lack of engine noise when cruising around on battery power alone means the plug-in hybrid models are the most refined in the Cayenne range. There’s still a bit of road noise to contend, but any hubbub making its way into the cabin isn’t enough to ruin the experience. Far from it. Around town, these hybrids are especially pleasant and relaxing.
The E-Hybrid uses the 3.0-litre V6 turbo from the standard Cayenne, with the addition of an electric motor for a combined system power output of 470hp and 650Nm of torque. This particular Cayenne is capable of surging from 0-62mph in 4.9 seconds. Not bad for the eco-friendly version.
It’s satisfying to make use of too, and quite good fun. Being able to waft around town in silence (for up to 46 miles) is very refined and civilised, but the punchy petrol engine quickly wakes up when required thanks to the slick drivetrain that flicks between drive modes – E-Power, Hybrid Auto, Sport and Sport Plus – seamlessly.