The Porsche Cayenne continues into 2006 with a few changes, most of them to the options. Changes to the standard features include a new remote with three buttons to replace 2005’s two-button version; there’s a switch on the B pillar to deactivate the interior surveillance system; there are full-size airbags for both front occupants that use an organic-based propellant that makes them lighter and easier to recycle; and new weight sensors turn off the passenger airbag when a child seat is detected. A new exterior colour, Dark Olive Metallic, replaces Dark Teal Metallic.

Other changes include MP3 capability on the Communication Management System; an optional electronic logbook for automatic recording of mileage, journey length, date and time for all trips made; an optional extended navigation function helps find your way back to your starting point even if the roads are not on the system’s maps; a new module allows the addition of a mobile telephone to the communication system; the Porsche crest can be added to the headrests; a wider 20-inch Cayenne Sport Techno rear wheel is available; and there’s an independent interior pre-heating and pre-ventilation system with 24-hour programmable timer, which warms and ventilates the interior without the engine running.

The Cayenne is available as the V6-powered Cayenne; as the V8-powered Cayenne S; and as the fire-breathing turbocharged V8 Cayenne Turbo. All come with a four-wheel drive system, which sends 62 per cent of the engine’s power to the rear wheels under normal driving, and can divert up to 100 per cent to the front or rear wheels when needed.

The V6 Cayenne model includes a six-speed manual (it can be optioned up to an automatic), leather interior, power latching rear tailgate, 17-inch alloy wheels, 12-way power adjustable front seats, laminated privacy glass, manual air conditioning, heated mirrors, power windows, locks and mirrors, CD player with twelve speakers, and air-conditioned glove box.

The Cayenne S adds a Tiptronic automatic transmission, 18-inch wheels, titanium-coloured brake calipers, automatic climate control and a Bose surround sound system.

The Cayenne Turbo adds a specially-tuned Tiptronic transmission, aluminum- and wood-trimmed interior, DVD-based navigation system, bi-Xenon headlights, electrically-adjustable heated steering wheel, heated front seats, metallic paint, tire pressure monitoring system, park assist, full leather interior, full-colour instrument cluster display, silver-finish roof rail mounting system and red-painted brake calipers. The Turbo’s headlamps also use sensors to measure the steering angle and road speed, and adjust the illumination level of an extra bulb in the headlight cluster to provide additional light on curves.

Many Porsche fans were initially horrified at the thought of that name showing up on an SUV, but dealers complain that they can’t get enough to meet demand. Parts arrive at the assembly factory from several places, including Volkswagen, which supplies the V6’s engine block and partners in the Cayenne’s unit-body chassis.

Connect with