Porsche’s cash-cow Cayenne SUV now accounts for about a third of the automaker’s worldwide sales, and it currently comes in seven flavours. Today we’re looking at the GTS that starts at $108,200. It’s not the fastest. That would be the $178,100 Cayenne Turbo S. And it’s not the most fuel efficient. That’s a toss-up between the $72,000 Cayenne Diesel and $87,700 Cayenne S E-Hybrid, all depending on your driving style and needs. And it is certainly not the least expensive. Entry into the Cayenne club starts with the base 300 hp V6 Cayenne at $67,400.
No, the Cayenne GTS is billed as the most agile of this portly SUV family – the one that’s going to make you say “Wow, this thing drives like a gigantic sports car.” Well, darned if that isn’t the case.
I’m out on my favourite back road loop, Sport+ button is pushed, and the GTS rockets from bend to bend, poised, flat and eager to be pushed some more. The steering is sending back plenty of feedback, and there are no question marks as to what the chassis is up to. Am I going to push wide? Is the back end going to get loose?
Body roll appears to be a foreign concept here with the GTS’ standard 20 mm lowered air suspension and Porsche Active Suspension Management. This one was also armed with Torque Vectoring Plus ($1,700). Opt for the active sway bars ($4,010) and your Cayenne GTS would be even more impressive.
Yes, the SUV’s considerable mass makes itself known, and your posterior rides well above the tarmac that streams under those black-satin 20-inch wheels, but damn if the Cayenne GTS doesn’t feel like a… Porsche. To riff once again on that well-used phrase, this thing handles like no 2,185 kg SUV has any right to.