2008 Porsche Cayenne

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2008 Porsche Cayenne Review

Note: This review was created when the 2008 Porsche Cayenne was new.

The Cayenne offers one of the nicest interiors in the class, but an underpowered base engine combined with a steep sticker price means it ranks in the bottom half of this highly competitive group. 

Pros & Cons

  • Powerful V8 engine option
  • Excellent hi-tech handling and healthy off-road capability
  • Attractice redesigned exterior
  • Lots of standard safety features
  • Expensive (especially the Turbo model) compared to similar vehicles
  • Base V6 engine could use more power
  • Somewhat uncomfortable rear seats and awkward entry/exit

Research & Ratings

Currently, the Porsche Cayenne has a score of 8.1 out of 10, which is based on our evaluation of 32 pieces of research and data.




Critics' Rating: 7.7
Performance: 7.8
Interior: 8.0
This model has never been fully tested for safety. Its overall score is being calculated without safety.
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2008 Porsche Cayenne Overview

Though the 2008 Porsche Cayenne may be ideal for those who want sporty, refined performance and off-road capabilities in a luxury family-friendly SUV, a high sticker price and questionable power detract from its appeal. Introduced in 2002, the Cayenne received a makeover for 2008, gaining a mildly redesigned exterior and an overhauled performance package. "More power, better fuel economy, and potent technology put this new Porsche right at the top of the class with the likes of the all-new BMW X5, Acura MDX, and Mercedes-Benz ML," praises Motor Trend. "We predict a nasty dogfight when they're all in six-cylinder format, but when looking for a 500-horsepower peer, the new Porsche Cayenne is in a class by itself." But Porsche commands a premium for its vehicles, and the Cayenne is no exception. Though the base model is the lowest-priced Porsche out there, the difference in price between the base and the top-of-the-line Turbo is a whopping $50,000. On the plus side, the Cayenne is expected to enjoy very high resale value.

The 2008 Porsche Cayenne is available in three trims: the base Cayenne, the Cayenne S and the ultra-premium Cayenne Turbo. The base Cayenne comes standard with a six-speed manual, but is optional with the six-speed Tiptronic S transmission. The Cayenne S and Turbo come standard with the Tiptronic S.

  • "If you're willing to pay the price for the premium equipment, the 2008 Cayenne really does take some remarkable steps forward." -- Forbes
  • "Ultimately, anyone willing to pay top dollar for a top-of-line vehicle will get his or her money's worth. Drivers will sit inside their Cayenne, encased in beautiful leather, listening to premium sound and confident that if they need to, they could hit 160 mph. And even at those speeds, the cabin is quiet enough to hear the gasps from the back seats." -- Detroit News
  • "Yep, the Cayenne is now more than ever an engineering tour de force, at a price to match." -- Newsday

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