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Porsche Dashes Detroit with Cayenne

2008 Porsche Cayenne

2008 Porsche Cayenne

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Just four years after launching the Cayenne, Porsche is back with a new version of its popular SUV. Designed to emphasize the “sport” in sport-utility vehicle, the original decision to build the Cayenne was greeted with plenty of skepticism and more than a little derision, but it has proved a very strong part of the German marque’s lineup, boasted Porsche CEO Wendelin Wiedeking, during a Monday preview at the Detroit Auto Show. “It was patently dismissed, but it’s now patently loved,” said the executive.


The new version boasts significant revisions to the exterior designed to smooth out some of the more criticized design features. That includes more widely-set headlights, as well as the addition of a new LED light bar, mounted in the grille below the main lamps. That will become a standard feature on future Porsche products, company officials noted during the unveiling, at the North American International Auto Show. The rear spoiler on the Cayenne Turbo has been lengthened for further aerodynamic stability, and new, rear LED taillights have been added. The subtle changes reduce Cayenne’s wind drag markedly.


The Cayenne’s various powertrains have been redesigned, the V-6 now delivering 290 horsepower, a more than 15 percent increase. The Turbo model now makes 500 horsepower, and can launch from 0-60 in just 4.9 seconds, as a longer feature on reveals. Even with the improvement in performance, the various versions of the 2008 Cayenne will get from 8 to 15 percent better fuel economy than the outgoing SUV.


And to keep all that power firmly planted, the German maker has redesigned its stability control system. The Porsche Dynamic Chassis Control can keep the cabin perfectly upright through reasonably aggressive turns, generating up to 0.65 Gs.


Even Porsche wasn’t sure what to expect when it launched the Cayenne, four years ago, but Wiedeking noted that sales have been running roughly 40,000 annually, or double the initial company forecast. Significantly, the sporty ute has become one of Porsche’s big sellers in emerging markets, such as China and Russia, where sales have surged by double and triple digits in recent years. “We could not have done that with (Porsche’s classic) sports cars,” observed the CEO.


Related Articles


Preview: 2008 Porsche Cayenne by Marty Padgett (1/8/2007)
Porsche promises more power, torque, and technology.


2007 Detroit Auto Show Coverage by TCC Team (1/7/2007)
Lights, cameras, Cobo – action.


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