Being the earliest SUV in Porsche’s range, it’s only natural that this model is the first to reach its third generation, coming after 15 years since the first generation was launched. The new generation has now arrived in Malaysia, 11 months after going on sale in Europe and is available in Cayenne and Cayenne S variants.

Base prices, no longer subject to GST in June, July and August, are RM745,000 and RM890,000, respectively. The prices are available only for units registered by August 31, 2018 as the Sales & Services Tax (SST) is scheduled to be applied from September 2018.

With each new generation of a model, there is new technology introduced. Sometimes this technology may already have been offered in other models as it is a matter of timing. Unless there is a very good reason to introduce the new technology right away in an existing model, manufacturers usually wait till the new generation.

And so it is with the new Cayenne which is a completely new development, powered by the latest turbocharged engines with the new 8-speed Tiptronic S gearbox. The chassis has also been re-engineered and connectivity is better than ever before.

“The new Cayenne promises to be more Porsche and more Cayenne than ever. It further emphasises the character of the vehicle: to be more precise, elegant, athletic and expressive. The Cayenne has also been digitalised and networked throughout to provide another level of digital connectivity to the cockpit. This is how the Cayenne makes the Porsche experience even more fascinating but remains as a genuine sports car for five,” said Arnt Bayer, CEO of Sime Darby Auto Performance which has been the authorized Porsche importer in Malaysia since 2010.

The latest Cayenne has a 3-litre V6 turbocharged engine (340 bhp/450 Nm) which gives it a claimed 0 to 100 km/h time of 6.2 seconds (5.9 seconds with the Sport Chrono Package) and a top speed of 245 km/h. The Cayenne S engine is also a V6 but in spite of a slightly smaller displacement of 2.9 litres, it has two turbochargers which boost outpet to 440 bhp/550 Nm. That output makes it possible for the SUV to go from standstill to 100 km/h in 5.2 seconds (with Sport Chrono Package: 4.9 seconds), and reach a maximum speed of 265 km/h, it is claimed.

The new Cayenne shares much with the 911 and for the first time, the model has mixed tyres and rear-axle steering. In addition to these typical sportscar features, the on-road capabilities are said to be further improved by active all-wheel drive as standard, Porsche 4D Chassis Control, 3-chamber air suspension and the Porsche Dynamic Chassis Control (PDCC) electronic roll-stabilisation system.

The new Cayenne gets rear axle steering (above) as well as electronic roll stabilisation control (below).

Despite its significantly extended standard equipment, the Cayenne weighs 65 kgs less than its predecessor and remains perfectly no less capable in off-road conditions.

The overall looks of the new Cayenne appear similar to the second generation but a longer look will show enlarged air intakes at the front while new horizontal light edges visually widen the vehicle and make it look more athletic. The wheelbase is unchanged but the body has gained 63 mm while the roofline is 9 mm lower. While the increased length might not make a big difference to cabin volume, the interior designers have managed to expand the boot capacity by 100 litres.

Other changes include larger wheels (+ 1 inch) and the distinctive, 3-dimensional Porsche logo which spans the redesigned rear lights with 3-dimensional light design and end-to-end narrow strip of LEDs.

Porsche is offering a new 3-stage lighting concept for the headlights and every Cayenne is now fitted with LED headlights as standard. With the next upgrade, the Porsche Dynamic Light System (PDLS) can be selected as an option, offering a variety of light modes such as cornering light and motorway light. The new LED main headlights with matrix beam including PDLS Plus are the best system available. Fully variable light distribution and intensity are achieved by 84 individually-activated light-emitting diodes. This means that the Cayenne can offer new functions such as high beam that does not glare opposing traffic, as well as adaptive sign glare control.

Porsche Surface Coated Brakes (PSCB) are available as an option for all Cayenne models. These consist of a cast iron disc with a tungsten-carbide coating. This finish increases the friction values while wear and brake dust are significantly reduced. The brakes, exclusive to Porsche, are also visually impressive with the calipers painted white while the surface of the discs gain a unique gloss level after bedding-in.

The relationship between driver and vehicle is enhanced with the Porsche Advanced Cockpit for this new generation. At the heart of the new display and control concept is a new 12.3-inch full-HD touchscreen from the latest generation of Porsche Communication Management (PCM) system which was first seen in the new Panamera. This is flanked by two 7-inch full-HD displays, which display all other relevant driving data plus additional information selected using the multi-function steering wheel.

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[Chips Yap]

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