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2011 Porsche Cayenne

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2011 Porsche Cayenne Review

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The first Cayenne felt like a Porsche SUV; this one feels more like a Porsche. The all-new, second-generation Cayenne is lighter, more powerful and delivers even more Porsche-like precision, especially when outfitted with all its high-tech handling technologies. It's also roomier and more fuel efficient, still overly capable off-road, and now the lineup includes a hybrid model. There's still no third-row option - see the BMW X5 lineup if you need one – and its attractive $47,000 base price can be deceptive if you want "extras" like an auto transmission and a decent sound system.
Last four: Real Porsche, real SUV.

You'll Like This Car If...

If your sixth sense is a keen appreciation for driving feel - or maybe high-style interiors - the 2011 Porsche Cayenne is the SUV for you. And it's just as utilitarian as any of its two-row competitors.

You May Not Like This Car If...

The 2011 Porsche Cayenne isn't the smoothest highway cruiser in the segment, and it's pretty pricey.

What's New for 2011

The all-new 2011 Porsche Cayenne larger and roomier, but 400 pounds lighter. It's more powerful, but more fuel-efficient. The lineup now includes a hybrid model, and offers a torque-vectoring all-wheel drive system that actually raises its Porsche-ness to a new level.

Driving the Cayenne
Driving Impressions

Our track time with the 2011 Porsche Cayenne included back-to-back drives in the new and old Cayenne Turbos. When we got out of bed that morning, the outgoing Cayenne Turbo...

... was the performance SUV benchmark; at the end of the day, we talked about it pushing in corners and looking bloated. With 400 fewer pounds to lug around and an available new torque-vectoring all-wheel drive system, the 2011 Porsche Cayenne Turbo just feels more Porsche-like in translating driver input into action. Fortunately for those trying to keep the final tally south of six figures, the Porsche Cayenne and Porsche Cayenne S benefit from the same the improvements. We were also impressed by the 2011 Porsche Cayenne Hybrid on the track, but were more interested in testing its around-town performance, during which it demonstrated the little brake and throttle quirks still present in most hybrids. The 2011 Porsche Cayenne is also quieter and more comfortable than its predecessor, but it's still not the softest-riding car in its class.

Porsche Torque Vectoring Plus
In short, PTV Plus sends more torque to the outside rear wheel when cornering, helping the vehicle track truer to steering input. Especially when combined with PASM and PDCC suspension and chassis control, PTV Plus can make the 2011 Porsche Cayenne feel like a lightweight, low-slung sports car.

Porsche Ceramic Composite Brake (PCCB)
On one hand, the Cayenne's ceramic composite brake option adds more than $8,000 to the sticker. On the other hand, shorter braking distances, more fade resistance, rotor lifespan of up to 200,000 miles and a notable reduction in unsprung mass are all very good things.

2011 Porsche Cayenne Details
Interior

The interior of the 2011 Porsche Cayenne is instantly reminiscent of the Porsche Panamera's. Fine design and materials combine with a multitude of controls in an elegantly busy cockpit that's richer and more interesting than a BMW X5's. Rear passengers are treated to a roomy backseat that slides 6.3 inches, reclines and offers 40/20/40 split-folding for maximum passenger/cargo compatibility.

Exterior

The slightly larger 2011 Porsche Cayenne actually looks smaller than its predecessor, thanks in part to a more forward-leaning rear window and black side pillars. Some of our favorite design touches include the Cayenne Turbo's larger trapezoidal grille and the fact that the Cayenne S Hybrid is distinguished from the Cayenne S by only a Porsche-script "Hybrid" on the front fenders. Some purists are sure to be put off by the addition of "Porsche" spelled out on the tailgate. Cayenne spotters take note: black brake calipers indicate a V6 model, silver calipers denote Cayenne S or Cayenne S Hybrid, and red calipers are reserved for the Cayenne Turbo. Yellow calipers announce the presence of the $8,000+ ceramic brake option.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

At its base price of about $48,000, the 2011 Porsche Cayenne includes a 300-horsepower V6 engine, six-speed manual transmission, all-wheel drive, a power rear liftgate, Bluetooth phone connectivity, auxiliary audio input, dual-zone auto climate control, a 10-speaker/100-watt sound system and leather seats. The 2011 Porsche Cayenne includes six airbags as standard equipment, plus electronic stability and traction controls that deliver both performance and safety benefits.

Optional Equipment

A fully-loaded 2011 Porsche Cayenne will have a 16-speaker, 1,000-watt Burmester audio system, panoramic glass roof, 18-way adjustable front seats, adaptive cruise control, lane change assist, active headlights and many of the other options you'd expect in the category. Performance upgrades include torque vectoring, ceramic composite brakes, air suspension, active suspension, chassis control and off-road underbody protection for those inclined to take their Porsche off-pavement.

Under the Hood

In addition to more powerful, more fuel-efficient engines, 2011 Porsche Cayenne powertrain highlights include a new eight-speed automatic transmission, new torque-vectoring all-wheel drive system and an Auto Start Stop function that mimics hybrid-car behavior, shutting off the engine at full stops and quickly restarting it when the brake pedal is released. The available air suspension automatically lowers the Cayenne at 86 mph – and lowers it some more at 130 mph – and can also raise the vehicle a couple inches to provide more than 10 inches of ground clearance. Other physics-defying features familiar from the outgoing Cayenne include electronic dampers with Comfort, Normal and Sport modes (PASM), plus active anti-roll bars that reduce corner lean and improve off-road traction (PDCC). The Cayenne's new all-wheel drive system is lighter and less complex than the previous system, but can now distribute 100 percent of the available torque to the front or back. The reduction gearbox is gone, but first gear is lower and the system can still be locked for more extreme off-road conditions. The multi-tasking 2011 Porsche Cayenne also offers impressive max towing capacity of 7,716 pounds.

3.6-liter V6
300 horsepower @ 6,300 rpm
295 lb-ft of torque @ 3,000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 15/22 (manual), 16/23 (auto)

4.8-liter V8
400 horsepower @ 6,500 rpm
369 lb-ft of torque @ 3,500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 16/22

3.0-liter, supercharged V6-based hybrid
380 horsepower @ 5,500 rpm
427 lb-ft of torque @ 1,000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 20/24

4.8-liter twin-turbo V8
500 horsepower @ 6,000 rpm
516 lb-ft of torque @ 2,250-4,500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 16/22

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2011 Porsche Cayenne Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.8
Out of 10

Based on 75 Ratings for the 2011 - 2016 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.3/10
    Quality
    9.2/10
  • Reliability
    8.9/10
    Performance
    9.3/10
  • Comfort
    8.8/10
    Styling
    9.3/10

CAYENNE TURBO BEST SUV IN THE PLANET

By on Friday, April 29, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 35,000

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: "Best SUV in the planet."

Cons: "None."

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

"I have read some reviews on Cayennes and quite frankly if you are not willing to spend the money and load it then don't complain. If you get a loaded Cayenne Turbo you will ABSOLUTELY LOVE IT! There is no better SUV in the planet. If you go for the diesel or the v6 normally aspirated or the Hybrid...you will have to compromise on performance and luxury. The Cayenne Turbo is an amazing vehicle that defies the laws of physics. It is a beast."

overpriced under performer

By on Tuesday, December 08, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 9,500

10 5.0
overall rating 5 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
5/10
Value
2/10
Reliability
5/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
5/10

Pros: "Handles like a car, fit and finish"

Cons: "can not trade due diesel sales restriction"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 2

"we ordered this car and took delivery Aug 2015. I did not like the engine from day one. underpowered, and to much turbo lag. did not realize on delivery it did not have headlight washers. the VW Touareg and Audi Q7 both do, they all share the same chassis. also did not realize when you buy a diesel or hybrid you do not get the more advance 4x4 system. No center, or rear locker. it has a system that will send power to the front wheels only if slipping. not as good as a center locker with 50/50 split. We ordered the 18 way sport seats ( wast of money), they do not fold flat in the rear, also you have to slide across the hump to get in or out. The infotainment system is awful compared to others. the weather only shows major cities, xm is not as good as sirius."

9 people out of 14 found this review helpful

Great driving SUV

By on Wednesday, July 22, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 22,158

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: "great colors interior/exterior, rims/tires"

Cons: "Small rearview mirror"

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

"I love this car and it gets a lot of attention from other individuals. I have been at stop lights and people yell at me compliments about my car. It's very easy and nice to drive. Mine was custom made and gets a lot of compliments both inside and out. The exterior color is unique because not many SUVs carry that color. Overall it's a great car and a lot of fun to drive it."

11 people out of 23 found this review helpful

very pleased with the car

By on Thursday, June 18, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 13,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"If you have the money If you enjoy driving You want an SUV that drives like a coupe this car is what you need No alternative Very reliable Powerful very comfortable seating OK trunk not too much room but does the job well Electronics audio could be better the only problem is burns oil you may need to add on before oil change"

26 people out of 48 found this review helpful

Don't go for this one!

By on Monday, April 06, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 5,000

10 2.0
overall rating 2 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
2/10
Value
1/10
Reliability
1/10
Quality
1/10
Performance
3/10
Styling
2/10
Comfort
1/10

Pros: "look, brand name"

Cons: "everything else, horrible seats, horrible service"

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

"It has a good name but nothing else. Too many problems came in very short time. Long time took to fix problems. Very poor costumer service from the dealership and Porsche USA. Not even one sorry I heard for all those ridiculous problems. Seats are very uncomfortable. Electronic features are really outdated compare to other luxury brands. I just really want to get rid of it but I will lose too much money. You pay 80 K and don't even receive as much quality of a 25 k SUV. This is a piece of junk."

46 people out of 90 found this review helpful

The best SUV I have ever owned

By on Saturday, March 28, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 11,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "The best"

Cons: "None"

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

"This is my second Cayenne. I had a 2013 and traded for the 2014 Platinum Edition. Reliable, fast and great driving. Looks awesome next to other SUV's. No complaints."

18 people out of 28 found this review helpful

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