It’s widely acknowledged that the Cayenne is a milestone for Porsche as the company’s first diesel SUV.
But it is also a stepping stone on its committed path to more socially responsible motoring, with the forthcoming petrol/electric model, the S Hybrid.
Launched in February, the diesel is meant to extend customer choice and its appeal. It has a combined economy figure of 35.8mpg compared to the petrol’s 21.9, which equates to roughly 150 more miles to the tank.
The diesel emits significanlty less CO2 than the 2.6-litre petrol model’s 310g/km too, which helps mitigate the £2,603 price premium over the petrol at £39,404.
Porsche said the diesel variant fulfills its commitment to “reduce fuel consumption in all its cars” through direct injection engines in its range consuming 15% less fuel, culminating in the hybrid Cayenne exceeding 31mpg launching within two years.
Porsche offers a wide range of personalisation options and anyone who places an order receives an invitation for a half-day test at its Silverstone facility.
Spec upgrades include climate control (£320), electric sunroof (£896), rear parking sensor (£527) and satellite navigation (£2,048).
Critical to dealers will be the advantages of the diesel Cayenne over competitors: the BMW X5 3.0d costs from £40,815, for example.
The fuel efficiency of the Land Rover Sport diesels is 28.3mpg at best and CO2 emissions are higher, and the Mercedes-Benz ML320 CDI SE costs from £40,907, has a combined mpg of 30.1 and emits 246g/km.
According to Porsche, the selling points of the Cayenne diesel are the brand’s “strong, aspirational image, benchmark driving dynamics, class leading residuals, impressive fuel economy and lower CO2 emissions”.
The consumer view
The CO2 emissions figure is 244g/km and represents a serious effort to combine 2.2 tonnes, 133mph, four-wheel drive and a six-speed Tiptronic automatic transmission with environmental responsibility.
You now have three choices from VW when it comes to an SUV. Touareg, Audi Q7 or
Cayenne. The Porsche is better on-road, better off-road, but not better politically.