Monday, October 22, 2012

Used Car Review - Porsche Cayenne (2004-2009)

The German experience wouldn't be complete if a drive in Autobahn is lacking. Myk Belmonte invites you to speed up in this super car dominated road with a SUV. But what should we pick? The answer, an icon of the rich and from the man who built the people's car.

2004-2009 Porsche Cayenne

Risking or gambling for something good is not a bad thing, unless violence or blood is involved. There are numerous risks that ended up in triumph. An example is Sony introducing the Walkman to much phenomenal success while there are risks or attempts that should never be done, just like what the Catwoman film that starred Halle Berry. It flopped and thus, a risk not worth dying for. But, the story for Porsche (known for legendary sports cars and cabriolets) to introduce a sport utility vehicle was a commercial success for the company.

Sharing the platform with the Volkswagen Touareg and the Audi Q7, the Cayenne was Porsche's first entry to the then booming SUV market. The first generation model had mixed reviews in the beginning but proved that it was the performance oriented vehicle among the SUV's available for sale and applauded for its impressive handling and monstrous engines. Just like other Porsches, 10 engine configurations are available. Production and marketing ended in 2010, with the second generation model introduced in that year.

PGA Cars - the distributor of Porsche, Audi, and Lamborghini vehicles in the Philippines - brought in the Cayenne in 2004 after the engine displacement taxation basis was abolished. It was a success for the company, having several prominent celebrities, business people, and some filthy rich politicians (assuming that their pork barrel money went to). The first generation model had seen roads until 2010, with the second generation model launched in the same year.

Value and Costs
A second hand Porsche Cayenne would cost half of the brand new price, which ranges from P2,500,000-P5,000,000. It includes various engine models of V6, V8, turbocharged, and naturally aspired. A word of warning, you would encounter imported units from countries that do used car exporting as a source of income. With that in mind, better avoid these units if possible. Pick up a certified pre-owned unit from PGA Cars is the call of the day.

There are numerous issues to remember if you are considering a pre-loved Cayenne. First are numerous build issues since Volkswagen, Porsche, and Audi vehicles are notorious when it comes to quality reports published by JD Power, Consumer Reports, and others. Issues that surround the Cayenne include the functionality of the air-controlled suspension, if the turbo gets shot by the previous owner, and various electronic niggles. Remember, do have a keen eye before purchasing since problems in a luxury vehicle is a nightmare.

Exterior and Interior
If I were to sum up the Cayenne's exterior, it won't win any Ms. Universe awards for car designs or any prestigious car exterior looks awards. The exterior shape resembles a turtle shell and thus, looks fierce especially on the open tarmac. You won't be buying the Cayenne for the looks right?

The interior is made up of high quality materials and the LCD screen serves as the main projector that shows the music tracks, radio stations, a GPS navigation, the call function, and other related media. You can link your phone via bluetooth function or insert your SIM card and vola, hands free driving! You can bring along four of your friends for a road trip with the Cayenne, with adequate room for everyone.

Two different sets of engines had been offered throughout the years. From 2004-2006, a 4.5 V8 engine in both natural and turbo flavors are made options. The naturally aspired 4.5 liter engine has 340hp and 420Nm while the turbo one carries 450hp and 620Nm. An update in 2007 added the following engines: A 3,598cc V6 that possess 290hp at 6,200rpm and 385Nm at 3,000rpm; the 4,806cc V8 is offered in different trims and in different horsepower and torque figures which includes a 385hp at 6,500rpm and 500Nm at 3,500rpm for the S line, GTS models get a 405hp at 6,500rpm and 500Nm at 3,500rpm, and lastly, Turbo S variants have 550hp at 6,000rpm and 750Nm at 2,250-4,500rpm. The V8 (whether turbo or not) has fast acceleration that leaves you breathless, honestly. The V6, although decent, does not do justice with the Cayenne's prestige and performance.

Driving Impressions
A clear and clutter free road is the order of the day for a Cayenne. Start the ignition, shift to drive (or push the clutch and go to first gear if you bought a manual transmission version), and give the accelerator a push and enjoy the ride. The ride is not bouncy as what sports cars are guilty of, so the speed junkie father can take the missus and their children for a adrenaline rush road trip. Just remember to buckle up and drive safely.

Any car enthusiast would love to dream to own a Porsche someday right? The Panamera would be a better choice but you want something big, a pre-owned Cayenne is a wiser pick. Besides, anything old but that is good is good right? And there is the support of the certified market, which alleviates fears of owning a luxury car.

The Good:
  • A Porsche for all around living
  • Performance is tops
  • Driving dynamics is Porsche-like
The Bad:
  • Ugly looks
  • Want to avoid the spotlight? Avoid this one
  • Good luck getting those speed tickets
The Pick: V8 Normal

Engines: 4.5 (2004-2006), and 4,806cc V8 (2007-2009), 3,598cc V6 (2007-2009)
Power: 340hp (4.5, naturally aspirated), 450hp (4.5, turbo), 385hp @ 6,500rpm (4.8 S), 405hp @ 6,500rpm (4.8 GTS), 500hp @ 6,000rpm (4.8 Turbo), 550hp @ 6,000rpm (4.8 Turbo S), 290hp @ 6,200rpm (3.6 V6)
Torque: 420Nm (4.5, naturally aspirated), 620Nm (4.5, turbo), 500Nm @ 3,500rpm (4.8 S and GTS), 700Nm @ 2,250-4,500rpm (4.8 Turbo), 750Nm @ 2,250-4,500rpm (4.8 Turbo S), 385Nm @ 3,000rpm (3.6 V6)
Fuel Consumption: 3-7km/L (city), 5-9km/L (highway) (*estimated and varies)
Transmission: 6-speed manual, 6-speed automatic
Suspension: Front independent double wishbone, rear independent multi-link

Price (New): P5,000,000-P8,000,000
Price (Now): P2,500,000-P5,000,000
Rivals: BMW X5, Mercedes Benz M Class, Land Rover Range Rover, Land Rover Ranger Rover Sport, Audi Q7
On Sale: 2004-2009

PGA Cars Mandaluyong - 727-0145

Photos courtesy of

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