It’s taken a little time but for those who said at its introduction in 2002 that the Porsche Cayenne would destroy the brand, the humble pie is all over their face.

You can see why the doubters doubted: after over half a century building nothing other than two door sports cars, Porsche had now lent its name to a two and bit tonne SUV developed in conjunction with Volkswagen.

But if life with the Cayenne was unimaginable then, it is even harder now to conceive of Porsche without it. When soon after its launch it became Porsche’s best-selling car, many believed it would not last: that the undeniable novelty value of the car would soon wear off. But it never did.

Today the Cayenne is the most important car in the entire Porsche range, still the best seller and the model Porsche could least do without. Now we see the Cayenne at the centre of the Porsche hub with the once one and only 911 relegated with the Boxster, Cayman and Panamera to the role of mere spokes.

Time alone will tell what long term impact the Macan has on Cayenne sales but for now the Cayenne remains the one upon whose vast profit margins all the other depend in part at least for their funding.

You may be a Porsche purist and as a result loathe the Cayenne with the same strength of feeling as you might love a GT3 RS; if so it is worth reflecting that without the former, the latter would almost certainly not even exist.

Top 5 Luxury SUVs

  • Range Rover Sport
    The new Sport, from a keen driver’s point of view, might just be the best SUV in the world at the moment

    Range Rover Sport

    1
  • Volvo XC90
    The new Volvo XC90 costs from £45,750

    Volvo XC90

    2
  • Porsche Cayenne
    The Porsche Cayenne is available as a hybrid for the first time

    Porsche Cayenne

    3
  • Land Rover Discovery
    The Discovery really is the defining go-anywhere super-utility vehicle

    Land Rover Discovery

    4
  • The second generation Audi Q7
    Audi Q7 is priced from £47,755

    Audi Q7

    5

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