From £47,390
At almost half the price of the Turbo it's difficult to ignore

Our Verdict

Porsche Cayenne

Even those who don't love the Porsche Cayenne should be impressed by its dynamic ability

11 June 2010

What is it?

Forget the Turbo, this is the crucial Cayenne. At least it is in the UK, where the diesel powered Cayenne is forecast to account for more sales than any other model.

Given that diesel power only arrived in the previous Cayenne towards the end of its life cycle, it is perhaps not surprising that the engine is one of the few elements not to have been changed for this next generation model.

So we still have a 3.0-litre V6 producing 237bhp and 406 lb ft of torque. However, like every other Cayenne, the diesel benefits from a considerable weight loss, (in this case 140kg), improving performance and economy.

What’s it like?

When we road tested the previous model, our conclusion was that Porsche’s first diesel had just enough performance at low-medium speeds to justify its badge, but lacked punch above 60mph. While this latest model partially addresses this, generally the conclusion remains the same; more than fast enough for any normal application, but don’t come here expecting 911 rivalling pace.

If you can get past that psychological hurdle, and we could, the Cayenne Diesel makes for an extremely well rounded machine. The styling is now less brash, with the tapered nose giving the impression of a smaller car, even though new Cayenne is actually 48mm longer. 40mm of that comes from an extended wheelbase, meaning the Panamera inspired interior is not only more upmarket, but more spacious.

The Cayenne always hid its mass well, but from the wheel this latest model does feel lighter and more agile. It’s body control (even on the standard steel springs) and steering feel better than many lighter and more obviously sporting cars.

Part of the weight saving that contributes to that feeling comes from the fact that Cayenne no longer has a separate low-ratio gearbox. Porsche say that its new 8-speed automatic (standard on diesel) provides a sufficient spread of ratios.

For those venturing off-road, it is worth noting that the diesel has a less sophisticated permanent all-wheel drive rather than active system fitted to the petrol only models. Back on road the torque converter box comes with stop-start, which works just fine, better than it does with Porsche’s PDK.

Should I buy one?

On second thoughts don’t forget the Turbo, because its an astonishing machine, but for almost half the price the diesel is difficult to ignore.

Jamie Corstorphine

Join the debate

Comments
18

14 June 2010

I don't want to like it, but it sounds like a very good car, and those performance and economy figures are impressive. I wonder how much more weight they could shed?

14 June 2010

Seems odd Porsche and VW didn't organise the immediate read-across of the upgraded 3.0 TDI engine from the new Audi A8 to the new Cayenne - 247 hp v 237 hp and torque produced at few hundred lower revs. Guess change will be made in course of 2011 model year.

Noteworthy that perhaps due to new Cayenne shedding up to 400 lbs its max permitted payload is a huge 3/4 tonnes (760 kgs).

14 June 2010

It's priced neck-and-neck with the similarly quick and fuel-efficient, 2010-updated BMW X5 30d SE. It makes the slower, thirstier and tighter inside Range Rover Sport TDV6 look over-priced at £46k. Who'd have thought the day would come when a Porsche (and a BMW) would be out-priced by a Land Rover.

15 June 2010

Only way I would ever buy a Diesel is if they do something with that horrible engine sound. I don't want to ride around in something that sounds like a Taxi or white van man or then a tractor... But it sounds like a good vehicle from the big P but nothing on RR or LR...

15 June 2010

Ugly porsche SUV with a diesel engine? Ok, I'll ignore it

15 June 2010

As a big diesel fan I do agree the one problem is the sound, although a V6/V8 etc isn't too bad. I am surprised no one has attempted to adress this issue before now. What is disapointing is the relative lowly performance of the Cayenne D, with all the experience and engines avialable from VAG i would have expected something akin to a V10 Q7 levels of performance.....

15 June 2010

[quote adrian888]something akin to a V10 Q7 levels of performance.....[/quote]


There is no such thing. I assume you're referring to the monstrous V12 TDI Q7, or the
V10 TDI Touareg. I spotted the Q7 V12 the other day coming out of London onto the M4, it had a very impressive squirt of power where the motorway starts, would leave the Porsche for dead.

15 June 2010

[quote adrian888]As a big diesel fan I do agree the one problem is the sound[/quote]

the one problem with diesels is the emission of particulate matter.

15 June 2010

[quote Amanitin]

[quote adrian888]As a big diesel fan I do agree the one problem is the sound[/quote]

the one problem with diesels is the emission of particulate matter.

[/quote]

Don't drive behind them then.

15 June 2010

Gosh, it's Ken comparing a brand new German engine against a non-German engine in an older car he's endlessly (and, some might claim, unhingedly) campaigning against. Let's see his conclusion:

[quote nicksheele]

Porsche Diesel - EU5; Range Rover Sport Diesel - EU4; Audi Q7 Clean Diesel - EU6.

According to Land Rover's own website the R/R Sport Diesel is only EU4 compliant but with a diesel particulate filter as an option.

A non DPF-fitted R/R Sport will have around five times as much particulate matter emission as a EU5/6 compliant engine.[/quote]

Quelle surprise!

Perhaps he'd like to compare the existing Cayenne with the existing Range Rover? Or perhaps he wouldn't, given it emits more CO2, has less power, less torque, is as attractive as Otto von Bismarck's backside, etc.

In addition he might note that sales figures are so rarely bent by mere statistics and particularly when it comes to cars costing twice the average salary. We may as well be comparing tread depths because Land Rover are outselling not just the Cayenne but Porsche as a whole - comprehensively.

Stick that in your crack-pipe and inhale, Kenny.

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