The NamasteCar review:

Porsche Cayenne Turbo

₹1,20,08,000 – 1,92,83,000

The Cayenne Turbo is a masterclass in performance SUVs and has pushed the envelope for fast cars. Our review explains why it is a brilliant car and an accomplished all-rounder.


WE LOVE: The Cayenne Turbo has a brilliant engine and is also a wonderful handling SUV along with proper sports car performance. The new Cayenne is also lighter and better to look while having a top-notch interior. For being driven around, the Cayenne is also a good option with optimum comfort

WE DON’T LOVE: The new Cayenne Turbo is expensive and also is big on drinking fuel when driven hard. The new Cayenne also looks similar to the old one and hence might disappoint buyers in that regard

1. Introduction

Porsche introduced its ground breaking Cayenne way back in 2002 and it changed the way SUVs are done. The performance SUV did not exist at that point of time with BMW only making the X5 SUV and sort of changing the way off-roaders developed into something for luxury and everyday driving. However, BMW already did other mainstream cars and Porsche only did sports cars like the Boxster and the 911. So for Porsche to make an SUV, it was a big change and it also changed the company. The Cayenne was and still is a massive profit making car for Porsche and since its launch many generations have been immensely successful. The Cayenne also followed the Macan and now the Cayenne is still the best selling SUV from Porsche and also its best-selling car in India. For today, we drive the fastest Cayenne on the market with the Cayenne Turbo and it is the best performance SUV with all of the sports car DNA being poured onto it. The Cayenne Turbo is the flagship product in the Cayenne range and is for those who seek a sports car but also along with off-road ability. This is the latest model and also the most powerful SUV that Porsche currently makes.

2. Looks from outside

Porsche design is always about evolution rather than revolution which the Cayenne shows. The Cayenne has always been a big SUV that is about luxury and performance but with the new one there are subtle changes. The Turbo is the most expensive Cayenne and that has more details which make it stand out as the fastest one. The new Cayenne has grown in length but it looks more compact with a lowered roofline, which gives it a sportier stance. There are also more crease lines while the front has new LED headlamps which are sleeker. The turbo has bigger air-intakes to feed more air into the engine and cool while the Turbo also gets extra features like massive 21 inch wheels, twin tailpipes, different light modules. Exclusive to the Turbo is also more body coloured parts like the rear apron, exterior mirrors and door side trims.

Compared to the previous Cayenne the biggest change is the new rear-end styling which has a three part light strip and that makes the car look wider. The Cayenne Turbo also has an adaptive roof spoiler. Just like the 911 Turbo, this spoiler is for aerodynamics and downforce. Above speeds of 160km/h the spoiler tilts and brings in more stability. The new Cayenne is also lighter and stronger with alumnium being used along with steel in its construction. Compared to an Lamborghini Urus the Cayenne Turbo is subtle but owners like it that way.

3. Driving feel

The new Cayenne comes with petrol engines only and the engine choices range from V6 and V8 petrol engines with 340 hp and 550 hp. There is also a new 8-speed Tiptronic S transmission. As said earlier the new Cayenne is lighter by 65kgs while there are new technologies like 4D Chassis Control, three-chamber air suspension, electric 48-volt roll stabilisation and high-performance Porsche Surface Coated Brakes. Further on you also get five pre-programmed drive and chassis modes including Mud, Gravel, Sand and Rocks settings to make the car adapt to the relevant conditions. For the first time, the Cayenne is also available with rear-axle steering- something which the 911 has.

The Cayenne turbo has 550hp and it is a biturbo eight-cylinder engine which helps the SUV to be very fast indeed. In terms of numbers the Cayenne Turbo can do zero to 100 km/h in 4.1 seconds (or 3.9 seconds with the Sport Chrono Package), and achieves a top speed of 286 km/h.

Driving experience

The Cayenne has always been fast and fun to drive but the Turbo takes it to a new level. First of all you sit lower than other SUVs and the cockpit seems to be made for drivers. The Cayenne Turbo also gets a knob on the steering wheel which is a shortcut to the faster settings and that again points at its faster pretensions. The engine is a delight and it wakes up with refined roar which is less than the Lamborghini Urus but noticeable still. On the move the ride quality is really nice and better than the last Cayenne while it has the slight firmness due to the large wheels, the overall suspension is still brilliant. That helps the Cayenne Turbo in clearing our bad roads and also helping in its everyday use-ability. The gearbox is also smooth and calm for everyday use and it does not feel too fast. In the softer modes the SUV is also not very loud.

But what happens if you want to have fun? You put the car in Sport and Sport Plus. The SUV lowers itself to 162mm ground clearance and its various technologies make this huge SUV corner like a sports car. The lighter platform, rear axle steering and more makes it feel agile and you can carry big speeds into corners. The Cayenne Turbo is one of the best SUVs to drive overall. It also sounds nice when driven in these modes with a growl.

A crucial element for any sports car is the steering and in the Cayenne it feels again brilliant- despite it being an SUV! The steering has feel and it makes you feel connected. So the Cayenne is great to drive and like a proper sports car but what about off-roading? Well the air suspension takes care of that as well with a 245mm ground clearance when raised plus a 500mm water waiting depth which is phenomenal. Despite the on-road tyres the Cayenne feels very good off-road and of course the engine has enough torque to take you out of situations easily.

4. Interior features and feel

The Cayenne Turbo is a stunning car from the inside and is luxury along with performance at its best. The design and feel of the cabin is a big step up from the previous Cayenne along with a big change in technology. The new Cayenne is tall and big but access inside is easy and once in, you will love the way the interior is designed around the driver. Unlike other SUVs, you sit lower and feel more connected to the car. That is the difference that Porsche brings. In terms of quality it is higher than other SUVs too and it just feels special but in a Porsche way that is simple yet elegant. The whole car interior is finished in leather and of course with the Turbo, you have a lot of options in how to spec the car so you can choose between various leather colours plus more.

Special for the Cayenne Turbo are sports seats with the headrests being integrated and have bigger side bolsters. There is also more stitching. More to talk about is the technology on offer. The Cayenne instrument cluster has the classic Porsche central tachometer while alongside that are two seven inch displays which have a lot of information. The steering wheel is also sporty while elsewhere there are a lot of touch sensitive buttons and big glossy touch surfaces all over. The Cayenne controls also have a Haptic feedback which is nice and good to use.

The mains screen is a 12.3inch unit which is huge and contains a crisp plus high quality display. Using tiles, you can quickly and easily create a home screen with preferred functions. On the right-hand side of the screen, an info widget can be selected to get access to other PCM functions. So, one feature can be displayed in the main area in the centre of the screen while the call function is also being used on the right. Up to six individual profiles can also be configured. The Porsche Communication Management (PCM) with its screen responds before you touch it with senses a hand approaching it, an option appears on the left-hand side of the display with sub-menus within the current menu. The user simply swipes with their fingertip – just like on a smart phone or tablet – to scroll through the options.  In terms of features you get a lot of course with a panoramic sunroof, Bose surround sound system, 18-way adjustable front seats, Matrix headlamps plus more.

While the Cayenne has the same wheelbase no as the last one, there is an improvement in space at the back. The rear seats are more accommodating and are more luxurious. There is more headroom and legroom at the back plus it is more comfortable for four passengers plus also if you are chauffeur driven.

5. Ownership

The Cayenne Turbo is an expensive car and uses a V8 hence it needs high-octane fuel. That said if driven in a moderate fashion, you will get 6-8kmpl and if driven fast, the figure will drop down to 3kmpl. Well that is the price you pay for a V8. Being an import the Cayenne would be expensive to maintain but it is less than other supercar brands. That said service costs are expensive with compared to other mainstream German luxury brands.

6. Our opinion

Also the new Cayenne brings in more luxury in form of a high quality cabin while the rear seat is also more comfortable

The Cayenne has impressed us a lot and in turbo form it is one of the best performance SUVs that you can buy. The Cayenne has always been an SUV that has proper sports car performance but the new one brings in more sports car tech and that makes it closer to a sports car than ever before. The new Cayenne is lighter to drive and is agile yet is also comfortable for daily use. Not many SUVs can claim this much performance and use-ability in one package. Also the new Cayenne brings in more luxury in form of a high quality cabin while the rear seat is also more comfortable. That said the Turbo is meant for the owner who likes to drive. Priced at near Rs 2 crore, the Cayenne Turbo is expensive but it makes up for that with lots of power, performance and proper sports car DNA. It is worth the money.

Specifications –

  • Type/number of cylinders: V8 twin-turbo
  • Valves/cylinders: 4
  • Effective displacement: 3,996cm3
  • Max. power (DIN) of combustion engine at rpm: 404kW (550PS) 5,750–6,000rpm
  • Max. torque of combustion engine at rpm: 770Nm 2,000–4,500rpm
  • Transmission: 8-speed Tiptronic S
  • Tyres: Front: 285/40 ZR 21 XL, Rear: 315/35 ZR 21 XL
  • Turning circle diameter (in conjunction with rear-axle steering): 12.13m (11.53m)
  • Top speed: 286km/h
  • Acceleration 0–100km/h: 4.1secs
  • Maximum ground clearance: 190mm
  • Luggage compartment capacity to top of rear bench seat: 745 litres
  • Unladen weight (EC): 2,250kg
  • Length: 4,926mm
  • Width (exterior mirrors/exterior mirrors when folded): 2,194mm/1,997mm
  • Height: 2,895mm
  • Fuel consumption combined, l/100km: 14.1–13.5
Somnath Chatterjee

Somnath Chatterjee

Been in love with cars for as long as I can remember and love writing about them along with driving them of course. Nothing makes me happier than a fast car and an empty road! Favourite Car: Ferrari 458 Speciale Quote: Life's too short to drive boring cars