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2009 Porsche Cayenne

Overview
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2009 Porsche Cayenne Review

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When in 1998 Porsche announced it was going to build an SUV, the proclamation was greeted with scoffs and pure horror. How could Porsche turn its back on its heritage by introducing a lumbering sport utility vehicle, many asked. But days after the vehicle, called Cayenne, came to market in 2002, it was clearly a success. It didn't so much change Porsche's basic character as extend it, because the Cayenne quickly became renowned as the sports car of the SUV set – a vehicle with off-road credentials that was also a fulfilling to drive. Never one to rest on its laurels, Porsche adds an even more dynamic element to the Cayenne line in the form of a new Turbo S model.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you like the command-position of a taller vehicle and off-highway capability combined with an uncommon level of performance and handling, we think you'll like the Porsche Cayenne.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If you seek an SUV for the ability to tote and tow giant loads while feeling like a rec room on wheels, you may not find all you seek in the Cayenne.

What's New for 2009

A new flagship, the 550-horseopower Cayenne Turbo S, joins the line up bringing to five the number of models wearing the Cayenne badge. Other changes include a revised Porsche Communications Management System (PCM) using a touchscreen instead of a keypad to access information. Porsche Ceramic Composite Brake (PCCB) technology is offered for the first time, while the GTS trim's sport seats and red or gold paint is now available on all Cayenne models.

Driving the Cayenne

Driving Impressions While we expected the 2009 Porsche Cayenne to excel in spirited on-road driving, it was the extensive off-road driving we did in the Cayenne that was a revelation to us....

Thanks largely to its very sophisticated systems like the optional air suspension system, traction management and Porsche Dynamic Chassis Control, the Cayenne is a superior off-highway performer, making quick work of imposing grades. As you'd guess, the 550-horsepower Cayenne Turbo S is an exciting performer, but buyers with smaller checking accounts (or perhaps simply more conservative with their auto expenditures) will find satisfaction in the V6-powered Cayenne and the V8-powered Cayenne S. In back-to-back comparison, the optional active Porsche Dynamic Chassis Control offers advantages in counteracting body roll but at a stiff price versus the already exemplary Cayenne suspension. For a vehicle with such a wide variety of capabilities, ride quality is excellent and attention to detail borders on sublime.
Favorite Features

The Sport Button
There is something appealingly cartoon-like about a button on the dash that, when pushed, offers, as Porsche describes it, "extra dynamism." Who doesn't want that?

Real Off-Road Capabilities
It would have been simple for Porsche to go light on the all-terrain capabilities of its SUV, since it is likely many of its drivers will never venture off asphalt, so it is more than reassuring to know that Porsche engineers took their rough-country mandate seriously and created a vehicle that can slog through slime.

2009 Porsche Cayenne Details
2009 Porsche Cayenne photo Interior

While the 2009 Cayenne is the most commodious of all Porsche models, its interior retains the same sophisticated luxury feel offered by sports cars like the 911. In proper Porsche fashion, the ignition lock is placed to the left of the steering column, while the instrument faces have the no-nonsense look of a sports model. The switches that adjust the suspension are integrated into a busy center console. The "offroad switch" is a toggle that allows quick adjustment of various chassis and suspension settings, and it is accompanied by the Sports button, which alters the responsiveness of the engine and the suspension. Both rows of seats are finished in leather, and leather also decorates the steering wheel rim, door handles, grab handles and other areas where many luxury models use simulated coverings. With rear seats up, the Cayenne accommodates a substantial 19 cubic feet of cargo, but unlike several other European luxury SUVs there is no third-row option.

Exterior
2009 Porsche Cayenne photo

Fresh from a thorough makeover last year, the 2009 Cayenne carries over with only minor cosmetic changes. Although it bears a strong resemblance to the original Cayenne, the subtle changes make both esthetic and functional sense. For instance, the headlights are now moved to the outside of the front fascia and covered with clear glass, improving looks and offering an aerodynamic benefit. The coefficient of drag is also lower than the first-generation SUV, a nod to improved fuel economy and better high-speed handling. Even the standard 17-inch wheels have presence, but the available 20- and 21-inch wheels really show off the huge brakes and calipers that are fitted on the car, a utilitarian style statement.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

Befitting a Porsche SUV, the 2009 Cayenne is fitted with a highly sophisticated four-wheel-drive system called Porsche Traction Management (PTM). Using a multiplicity of sensors and inputs, PTM determines the optimum front-to-rear power split with the ability to provide up to 100 percent of engine torque to the front or rear wheels. Also standard is Porsche Stability Management (PSM), which guards against rollover and increases the effectiveness of the brakes on loose and slippery surfaces. Safety gear includes airbags for driver and front passenger, two thorax side airbags and two side curtain airbags. A full complement of convenience items like power seats, power door locks power-operated rear lift gate and 12-speaker audio system are also standard.

Optional Equipment

The most notable of the Cayenne's options is the Porsche Dynamic Chassis Control (PDCC) system, which uses computer-controlled hydraulics to counteract body roll in cornering and transient maneuvers. The system uses active, motor-driven anti-roll bars instead of passive anti-roll bars to aid the Cayenne in achieving flatter attitudes for a feeling of security. PDCC is only available on Cayennes affixed with the Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM) air suspension. Standard on the Cayenne Turbo S, Turbo and GTS and optional on Cayenne and Cayenne S, the system offers integrated self-leveling and ride-height adjustment depending upon conditions and driver desires. Somewhat more mundane but still useful options are a trailer hitch and a cargo-area management system.

Under the Hood

The engines in the various Cayenne trim levels represent an embarrassment of riches. All three – 3.6-liter V6, 4.8-liter V8 and 4.8-liter twin-turbo V8 – offer more overall horsepower and torque output and better fuel economy than the first generation Cayenne engine lineup. One key reason is the use of direct gasoline injection technology, which results in up to 15 percent lower fuel consumption plus up to 12 percent better vehicle acceleration. Variable valve timing and a two-stage input in the naturally aspirated V8 are other contributors.

3.6-liter V6
290 horsepower @ 6200 rpm
273 lb.-ft. of torque @ 3000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 14/20

4.8-liter V8
385 horsepower @ 6200 rpm
369 lb.-ft. of torque @ 3500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 13/19

4.8-liter V8 (GTS)
405 horsepower @ 6500 rpm
369 lb.-ft. of torque @3500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 11/17 (manual), 13/18 (automatic)

4.8-liter Twin-turbo V8
500 horsepower @ 6000 rpm
516 lb.-ft. of torque @ 2250 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 12/19

4.8-liter Twin-turbo V8 (Turbo S)
550 horsepower @ 6000 rpm
553 lb.-ft. of torque @ 2250
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 12/19

Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

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2009 Porsche Cayenne Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.9
Out of 10

Based on 144 Ratings for the 2003 - 2010 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.9/10
    Quality
    9.2/10
  • Reliability
    9.0/10
    Performance
    9.4/10
  • Comfort
    9.1/10
    Styling
    9.3/10

AWESOME SUV

By on Sunday, April 06, 2014

I owned and sold this car
Reason: NEW MODEL.

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Fun to drive."

Cons: "NONE."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I loved everything about this car. Sold it becausue I buy a new car every 4 years. Perfomance was awesome. Reliable, Looked awesome too!"

Dissapointed

By on Friday, April 04, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 104,000

10 3.0
overall rating 3 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
3/10
Value
5/10
Reliability
1/10
Quality
1/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Excellent ride and handeling"

Cons: "Money pit!"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1

"I purchased this car 8 months ago and have put 6,000 of the 104,000 miles. I waited a long time for a porsche and I am soooooo disappointed . It goes into the shop at least every month and I am going broke owning this suv. I have put $5000 into in 8 months. 1) headlights go off and on 2) o ring on injector blown $800 3) battery $400 4) coils $800 5) rear latch $200 6) both fuel filters and serpentine belt $1700. Now the breaks need replaced at the tune of $1400. I had no idea European cars fell apart at 100,000 miles. Trading it in and taking a loss. But learned a valuable lesson."

3 people out of 3 found this review helpful

THE BEST SUV IN THE MARKET

By on Thursday, March 13, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 42,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "As fun as a 911...and I have owned a few."

Cons: "Pricey but you get what you pay for. The BEST!"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"The Cayenne TURBO is completely different from a regular Cayenne. The interior is ALL leather....all..even on the doors and dashboard. The headliner is alcantera and the wood accents are real wood. As far as performance it is the best performing SUV in the planet. Love it love it love it. With PDCC it carves turns like on rails. No body roll. Brakes are bigger than other models and they preform perfectly. Turn off the PSM (for those that can handle a 500+ HP vehicle without the computer reducing the power at wheels so you dont lose control) and you will feel the HP under the hood and on the pavement. Furthermore turn SPORT mode on and this car turns into a beast. It is an engineering miracle for an SUV to handle and accelerate the way a 911 Carrera 4S of the same year does. I have had only maintenance to worry about since I have owned it. Oil changes last 6 months and no major surprises came up in 4 years. Brakes, tires, fluids, wipers, and the usual maintenance components only. My next vehicle will be a Porsche Cayenne!"

3 people out of 3 found this review helpful

car like new nothing wrong fully loaded titanium

By on Saturday, March 08, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 50,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
Not Rated
Reliability
Not Rated
Quality
Not Rated
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "very fun to drive"

Cons: "none"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"never wrecked garaged since new new tires and brakes have been very happy with the car black with back and grey interior"

2 people out of 5 found this review helpful

2005 Cayenne Turbo - There is NO Substitute!!

By on Friday, February 21, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 72,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Fast, Nimble and a Great Looking SUV"

Cons: "Very Low MPG... 13 mpg in the burbs.. ;-("

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I bought this SUV (2005 Cayenne Turbo) when it was four years old with 45K miles and it now has 72K miles after 4 1/2 years owning it. Spectacular SUV to own.. Faassast, nimble and definitely a Porsche... You WILL get noticed in this vehicle.. I have a triple black with 20" TechArt Wheels.. Very reliable (knock on wood ;-).. have only replaced the basics and like all Premium brands, the maintenance can get pretty pricey - but we all know that going in right? Only drawback is mileage.. I live in the Chicago burbs and I barely get 13 MPG of mostly suburban driving. Overall I highly recommend this SUV.. buy one!!!"

Life is Simply Too Short to Drive Uninspiring SUVs

By on Monday, February 03, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 60,029

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
7/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Too FUN to drive; a sight to behold"

Cons: "Eats gas, tires and brakes(what can you expect?)"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Every time I get behind the wheel of my 2005 Porsche Cayenne S....it's a revelation. I never get sick and tired of driving this "truck" that behaves like a true sportscar. Porsche are literally MASTERS of every sensory aspect of driving; the throaty, V8 exhaust growl, the ride-on-rails cornering, the ability to confidently plow through four inches of snow at 75+mph, able to scale a 25% dirt grade effortlessly, etc. I could go on and on about this vehicle's superlative features...but that would SPOIL IT for you. I waited nearly a decade, for prices to come down to my affordability level. I finally found a low-mileage one for the price of a new entry-level KIA. Was it worth the wait? Absolutely. One LAST piece of advice - AVOID the lure of turbo boost and air suspension. Trust me, they cost a fortune to fix and they do go bad. Otherwise, this SUV BLOWS the doors off any other SUV ever currently made."

3 people out of 3 found this review helpful

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Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

Buying this car?