HISTORY now shows Porsche’s inclusion of an SUV — the Cayenne, to be specific — into its lineup has allowed the brand to expand its customer base and, equally important, keep itself profitable enough so it could continue making its sports cars better and better. Conversely, Porsche’s expertise in building sporty cars has also benefited the Cayenne right from this model’s introduction in 2013. So, all symbiotic, this.
In third-generation form the Cayenne remains one of Porsche’s best-sellers; its annual deliveries in recent years are topped only by another Porsche SUV, the Macan. What also continues to define the Cayenne is its ever-improving sporty traits. Now, this is something the new Cayenne Coupé takes to a higher level.
Pitched as packing “all the technical highlights” of the present Cayenne model, the Cayenne Coupé is also promised to be “more progressive, more athletic and more emotional, thanks to its custom design elements and new technical details.” Certainly, most obvious among the changes is the “fastback” silhouette of the SUV, which kind of evokes the teardrop roofline for which the brand’s iconic 911 has been known. If anything, Porsche’s treatment of the Cayenne Coupé’s more steeply raked rear window (and resulting pinched greenhouse) is tidier than that which the carmaker managed in the original Panamera.
Helping out in balancing the SUV’s silhouette are shorter windshield and A-pillars, a result of a roof that sits 20 millimeters lower compared to the Cayenne’s. To aid in aerodynamics, the Coupé’s fixed roof spoiler in the rear is combined with an adaptive one that extends a full 135 millimeters when the SUV hits 90kph. This means the visual mass of the Cayenne Coupé is elongated as well. Keeping proportions in check are doors and fenders that grew 18 millimeters wider, beefing up the vehicle’s shoulders.
Other touches unique to the Cayenne Coupé are its crisper lines, a redesigned rear section, a backseat bench that appears to be two individual sport buckets, and a panoramic fixed glass roof. Offered as an option is a contoured carbon roof that is part of one of three sports packages available. Depending on which package is chosen, stuff included among these are lighter 22-inch GT Design wheels and seat center sections adorned by classic check-pattern fabric.
Among the standard equipment are speed-sensitive power steering assist, 20-inch wheels, front and rear Park Assist including rear-view camera, Porsche Active Suspension Management and the Sport Chrono Package.
Two engines are initially available to the Cayenne Coupé. The first is a turbocharged 3.0-liter inline-six that makes 335hp and 450Nm. This is assigned to the “regular” Cayenne Coupé. The other, serving duty on the top-spec Cayenne Turbo Coupé, is a 4.0-liter V8 that, thanks to a pair of turbochargers, puts out 542hp and 770Nm. This means the V8-propelled Coupé can sprint from naught to 100kph in 3.9 seconds and on to a top speed of 286kph.
Yes, this SUV is a fastback, all right.