In our opinion, the Infiniti FX35 and FX50 are the closest rivals to the base Cayenne on the road—although it doesn't offer any off-road ability like the Porsche.
The Cayenne doesn't feel quite as agile, but the FX makes some sacrifices in packaging and ride quality for its styling-and-performance focus.
The Q7 is significantly larger inside than the Cayenne and comes with an available third-row seat; this past year it also got a more fuel-efficient supercharged V-6 in place of a V-8.
BMW's X5 (and X5 M) are also possibilities, but the X5 has not in recent years been as quick and nimble as the rest of BMW's vehicles.
The Range Rover Sport, like the Cayenne, offers a combination of on-road performance and off-road ability, though it's a letdown on many counts, with an aged design and cramped quarters.
One other interesting alternative is the new Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT8; with a 470-horsepower V-8 and straight-line performance that rivals the Cayenne Turbo—at a price that's less than the Cayenne S.
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|2012 Porsche CayenneBrowse Used Listings||2012 Audi Q7Browse Used Listings||2012 BMW X5Browse Used Listings||2012 Jeep Grand CherokeeBrowse Used Listings||2012 Land Rover Range Rover SportBrowse Used Listings|
|15 MPG City / 24 MPG Hwy||16 MPG City / 25 MPG Hwy||12 MPG City / 26 MPG Hwy||12 MPG City / 23 MPG Hwy||12 MPG City / 18 MPG Hwy|
|Gas V6||Supercharged Gas V6||Turbocharged Gas I6||Gas/Ethanol V6||Gas V8|
|Sport Utility Vehicle 4WD||4WD Sport Utility Vehicle||4WD Sport Utility Vehicle||2WD Sport Utility Vehicle||4WD Sport Utility Vehicle|
|AWD 4-Door Manual||quattro 4-Door 3.0T Premium||AWD 4-Door 35i||RWD 4-Door Laredo||4WD 4-Door HSE|
|All Wheel Drive||All Wheel Drive||All-Wheel Drive||Rear Wheel Drive||Four Wheel Drive|
|Sport Utility Vehicle||Sport Utility Vehicle||4 Door Sport Utility Vehicle||Sport Utility Vehicle||Sport Utility|
|Manual||Automatic w/Manual Shift||Automatic||Automatic||Automatic w/CommandShift|
|Detailed Spec Comparison|
|2012 Porsche Cayenne vs. 2012 Audi Q7||2012 Porsche Cayenne vs. 2012 BMW X5||2012 Porsche Cayenne vs. 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee||2012 Porsche Cayenne vs. 2012 Land Rover Range Rover Sport|