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Roadfly Magazine
Issue Two
Table of Contents

Past Issues Index
Roadfly Magazine
Issue Two
Nov. 25, 2002
• Classic Motoring
Porsche Cayenne
AutoSharp Pen
Coming Next Issue
• Volkswagen GTI 337
• Top Ten Gifts
• Holiday Getaways

Porsche Cayenne: Velvet Hammer of the Highroads and Highlands
By Steve Litscher
Executive Editor

(Sunday, November 24, 2002 2:30 PM EST)
Porsche Cayenne

Porsche Cayenne Black Leather Interior

Porsche Cayene Review

Porsche Cayenne Tiptronic Steering wheel

Porsche Cayenne Turbo Engine

VIENNA, VA - Porsche's forthcoming entry in the ever-popular Sport Utility Vehicle market is no rookie effort, but rather a seasoned veteran, poised to school the competition in how a luxury utility vehicle should perform.

While the notion of Porsche building an SUV might be surprising to some, it really shouldn't come as any surprise, especially when you consider the auto manufacturing icon has been building all-wheel drive vehicles since the early 1900s. With so much history and experience behind them, it's no wonder the Porsche Cayenne's AWD system is nearly perfect.

In fact, much of the Cayenne is nearly perfect - Porsche has been designing, testing and refining the super utility vehicle since the mid 1990s. Engineered primarily in Weissach (Porsche's Research and Development Center) and assembled at Porsche's "diamond plant" (Leipzig), the Cayenne has undergone thorough testing in various real-world environments around the globe to ensure that the vehicle is able to maintain its composure, even in the most severe environments.

Due to be unleashed on American soil sometime in early December, Porsche is prepared to produce and deliver nearly 20,000 Cayennes annually, thanks to their brand new Leipzig assembly facility.

With an overall length of 188.4 inches and poised on a 112.4 inch wheelbase, the 5,000-ish pound Cayenne seems to fit the stereotypical profile of a traditional SUV. Luckily, the comparisons stop on paper, because thanks to innovative and trend-breaking technological developments, the Cayenne offers the perfect balance of sports car performance, SUV practicality and off-road tenacity.

The heart and soul of the new Cayenne is an all-aluminum, 32-valve 4.5L V8, and it presents potential Cayenne buyers with a painstaking decision - make the responsible decision and order the very capable 340hp and 310lb-ft of torque V8, or choose the potent bi-turboed version which serves up a very gratifying 450hp and a whopping 460lb-ft of tire burning torque. The milder V8 should whisk the Cayenne from 0 to 60 in just around 7.0 seconds, while the twin turbo will rocket the Cayenne to 60 somewhere near the low side of five seconds.

To help manage that all of that power, Porsche has equipped the Cayenne with a six-speed tiptronic automatic transmission, which when snicked into manual mode is poised and ready to execute shifts as you see fit. Mated to the transmission is Porsche's most sophisticated drivetrain, complete with intelligent all-wheel drive.

The Porsche Traction Management (PTM) system combines a lockable center differential that adjusts power to the front and rear wheels through an electronically controlled multi-disc clutch to ensure optimum traction in even the harshest of conditions.

Through Porsche's Cayenne website, they go through great trouble to convey to the potential buyer that the Cayenne has been thoroughly tested both on and off road; Porsche sent Cayennes to all corners of the globe and tasked them with tackling extreme conditions, including mud, snow, ice, sand, heavy rains and other traction challenging environments. They've even built an off-road course at their Leipzig plant, and anyone taking delivery of a Cayenne in Germany will be given an opportunity to take a few laps on that track (complete with an instructor).

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