What Car? says...
A decade and a half on, it's hard to imagine just what a hullabaloo was caused by the arrival of the first Porsche Cayenne in 2002. That's because it was responsible for something of a paradigm shift for some of the traditional automotive brands.
You see, in the present day, no one bats an eyelid when a manufacturer of sports cars produces an SUV, whether that’s Jaguar, Maserati or even Lamborghini. And it’s not just sporty SUVs, because Bentley and Roll-Royce have now moved into the luxury SUV market, too.
It's amazing to consider that the first Cayenne had car enthusiasts virtually catatonic at the thought of Porsche building a ‘Chelsea tractor’. However upset they may have been, though, the Porsche Cayenne has been a belting success, with the first two generations finding more than 770,000 homes.
That's why it's one of Porsche’s most important cars. Like it or not, it’s the Cayenne and Macan that make up the majority of the brand’s sales. That’s why this third-generation Cayenne, which arrived in 2018, was no half-hearted refresh, even if its bodywork appears quite familiar. Look deeper and you’ll discover it conceals a new chassis, new engines and a totally overhauled interior. You can even choose it in slinkier Porsche Cayenne Coupé form, which we've reviewed separately.
The question is this: is the Cayenne still the best sports SUV for hurling down your favourite road, turning your knuckles white and neck hairs on end for all the right reasons? It has a lot more competition these days, including hot versions of the BMW X5 and Range Rover Sport to vie with offerings from the luxury brands we mentioned above.
Read on for our comprehensive review, and when you’re finished you can check out the best deals on nearly all new cars via our no-hassle New Car Buying page.