In 2006, Porsche added the Turbo S trim level to its Cayenne lineup, which brought the sport SUV’s already impressive output up to 520 horsepower. The 2007 model year was a one-year break for the Cayenne and when it returned in 2008, the Turbo S was not offered, but it did return again for the 2009 and 2010 model years. It looks like Porsche is going to try again, as it just announced that the Turbo S will make its triumphant return in the 2013 model year.
Much like the 911 Turbo S , the Cayenne Turbo S will share most of its styling and DNA with the step-down Turbo model. The biggest changes between the Turbo and Turbo S models will be some basic creature comfort additions, handling and braking changes, and most importantly, more power!
With the world of performance SUVs starting to get slightly crowded, how well can the top-line Cayenne Turbo S do in this quickly flooding marketplace? Does it really have enough additions over the Turbo model to constitute a price hike and how much is the price hike?
These questions and many more will be answered in our full review.
Updated 10/18/2012: Porsche has unveiled a very cool trailer video for their latest Cayenne Turbo S featuring the SUV in action on the track. Watch Gordon Robertson, Chief Driving Instructor testing the car on the track at its birthplace in Leipzig.
Updated 01/22/2013: Porsche USA has finally announced prices for the top version Cayenne Turbo S. Hit the jump for a full pricing and options list.
Click past the jump to read the review of the 2013 Porsche Cayenne Turbo S.
On the outside, the Cayenne Turbo S is nearly indiscernible from its Turbo counterpart until you get them right next to one another. The Turbo S boasts 21-inch 911 Turbo II rims – a full 2 inches larger than the Turbo model – with their inner surfaces painted black. Other differences include gloss-black-painted air inlet grilles, headlight housings, and side-view mirrors.
Additionally, the Turbo S model gets bi-xenon headlights and the Porsche Dynamic Lighting System (PDLS). PDLS includes dynamic and static cornering lights, speed-sensitive headlight control, and a function made specifically for bad weather. You also get High-Beam Assistant and Intersection Assistant standard. The rear lights are full LED and the brakes lights actually flash in an emergency stop to alert drivers.
Short of those additions, the Turbo S features the same sleek body design and wedge-style front end as the Cayenne Turbo. You can cover the Cayenne’s body in one of 10 different colors, including: black, white, classic silver metallic, jet black metallic, dark blue metallic, meteor grey metallic, umber metallic, jet green metallic, auburn metallic or carmine red.
The extra additions to the engine, body and chassis adds a whopping 99 lbs to the Cayenne Turbo S’s curb weight. While that sounds like nothing in the grand scheme, you will find out later why this small increase is so significant.
|Overall Length||190.79 inches|
|Overall Width||84.84 inches|
|Overall Height||67.01 inches|
|Curb Weight||4,883 lbs|
On the inside, Porsche made sure to let you know that you are driving its top-level Cayenne by installing an exclusive leather interior in all Turbo S models. This interior is available in black with Carrera red or black with Luxor beige and features contrasting stitching for added luxury and style. Also included is the carbon interior package.
Additionally, you get the Sport Chrono Package with PCM for free on the Turbo S model. This includes am analog and digital timer that tells you total driving time, lap time, lap distance covered, and individual lap times. PCM (Porsche Communication Management) also includes a 7-inch high-resolution screen and it controls the navigation system, CD/DVD player, sound settings, on-board computer, telephone, and high-speed internet service. With the PCM, you also get a high-speed hard drive to store songs and other data.
Standard on the Turbo S model is the 14-speaker Bose surround-sound system, boasting 585 watts and a 200-watt active subwoofer. You can opt for the Burmester 16-speaker 1,000-watt surround sound system for a little added scratch.
To make driving and parking a little easier, Porsche fit the Cayenne Turbo S with ParkAssist, a reversing camera and its adaptive cruise control with Porsche Active Safe (PAS), which regulates your speed relative to the car in front of you.
We’re pretty sure that Porsche will add more features to the list as it gets closer to the release date, but as you can see, the Cayenne Turbo S certainly has the standard equipment any Porsche owner would want.
Standard Interior Features:
- Leather interior with contrasting stitching
- Carbon Interior Package
- Sport Chrono Package w/ PCM
- 7-inch touch screen
- 14-speaker Bose surround-sound system w/ 585 watts and a 200-watt active subwoofer
- Back-up camera
- Adaptive cruise control w/ PAS
- More to come…
Optional Interior Features:
- Burmester 16-speaker 1,000-watt surround sound system
- More to come…
Engine and Drivetrain
Now here’s where the real differences come into play, but there is one surprise that we’ll get into later in this section. Under the hood of the Cayenne Turbo S rests essentially the same 4.8-liter twin-turbocharged V-8 engine that you’ll find under the hood of the Cayenne Turbo. The only difference in the engine bay is that the intake manifold is titanium colored and it has a pair of carbon-fiber inlays with “Turbo S” logos.
The Turbo S’s 4.8-liter powerplant has been tuned to pump out 50 extra ponies and 50 Nm (37 pound-feet), giving its 550 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 750 Nm (553 pound-feet) of torque between 2,250 and 4,500 rpm. Porsche doesn’t list what all it changed in the Turbo S to get this extra power, but we believe there was a remapping of the ECU and likely a little tweaking of the intake system to help bump the torque up. The guts of the engine are likely identical.
Delivering the ponies to all four wheels, via Porsche Traction Management, is Porsche’s Tiptronic S 8-speed transmission. You can shift through the 8 speeds via the gear shifter or the paddle shifter on the steering wheel. Additionally, you can just put the shifter in “Drive” and go.
With all of this extra power and torque, we expected to see a massive decrease in 0-to-100 km/h (62 mph) time, but in reality, the extra bulk of the Turbo S helped slow it down a bit. It is still faster than the Turbo model, as it hits 100 km/h (62 mph) in just 4.5 seconds compared to the Turbo’s 4.7 seconds, but we were really surprised to not see it closer to the 4.3-second range. The 2013 Porsche Cayenne Turbo S also features a 280 km/h (175 mph) top speed – 2 mph faster than the Turbo.
Even with the power increases, Porsche managed to keep the fuel economy of the Turbo S the same as the Turbo model. The Turbo S is estimated to get 15 mpg in the city, 22 mpg on the highway, and 17 mpg combined. It also retained the Turbo’s 270 g/km of CO2 emission – not too shabby for a 5050-horsepower V-8.
Engine and Drivetrain Specifications:
|Engine||4.8-Liter V-8, Twin-Turbocharged|
|Total Power||550 horsepower at 6,000 RPM|
|Total Torque||750 Nm (553 Pound-Feet) at 2,250 to 4,500 rpm|
|Drive Style||All-Wheel Drive w/ Porsche Traction Management|
|Fuel Economy (City/Highway/Combined||15 mpg/22 mpg/17 mpg|
|Emissions||270 g/km CO2|
|Acceleration (0-100 km/h [62 mph])||4.5 seconds|
|Top Speed||280 km/h (175 mph)|
Suspension and Braking
The 2013 Porsche Cayenne Turbo S features Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM), which is a self-leveling suspension system that is controlled via an interface on the center console. This interface allows you to decide between three suspension settings: Comfort, Normal, or Sport. Also included is Porsche Torque Vector ing Plus (PTV Plus), which controls the amount of torque that goes to each rear wheel via an electric differential to optimize high-speed cornering.
Porsche Dynamic Chassis Control (PDCC) is yet another suspension upgrade that comes with the Cayenne Turbo S. This system helps limit the amount of body roll, so you can take turns a little faster without worrying about rolling this large SUV. Speed sensitive steering helps you feel the road by tightening up the steering at high speeds, but allows for easy turning by loosening up under low speeds.
For braking, the Cayenne Turbo S uses all aluminum to help keep the unsprung weight to a minimum. The front rotors measure in at 390 mm (15.35 inches) and the rear rotors come in at 358 mm (14.09 inches). For those that need a little more braking “Oomph” you can opt for the Porsche Ceramic Composite Brakes (PCCB). This upgrade gives you far improved brake pedal response and reduces the SUV’s unsprung weight even more.
Standard Suspension Features:
- Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM)
- Porsche Torque Vectoring Plus (PTV Plus)
- Porsche Dynamic Chassis Control (PDCC)
- Speed sensitive steering
- All-aluminum brakes w/ 390 mm (15.35 inches) front rotors and 358 mm (14.09 inches) rear rotors
- 10.55 inches of maximum ground clearance
- Porsche Ceramic Composite Brakes
Pricing and Release Date
The Porsche Cayenne Turbo S is scheduled to arrive in dealerships in spring 2013 with a starting price of $146,000, not including a $975 destination charge. The available options are as follows:
|Sport Design Package with Side Skirts||$5,655|
|Sport Design Package without Side Skirts||$4,570|
|Aluminum-clad rocker panels||$400|
|Wheel Arch Extensions with Side Door Protection Moldings||$990|
|Stainless Steel Skid Plate in Front||$750|
|Stainless Steel Skid Plate in Front and Rear||$1,480|
|Bi-Xenon(TM) Headlights in Black with Porsche Dynamic Light System (PDLS)||$575|
|Porsche Dynamic Light System Plus (PDLS Plus)||$550|
|Porsche Entry & Drive||$1,090|
|Reversing Camera with ParkAssist Front and Rear||$655|
|LED Rear Lights Tinted Black||$620|
|Thermally and Noise Insulated Privacy Glass||$1,120|
|Heated Windshield for Thermally and Noise Insulated Privacy Glass||$490|
|Panorama Roof System||$660|
|Trailer hitch without tow ball||$650|
|Deletion of Model Designation||$0|
|Roof Rails in matte Aluminum finish||$1,190|
|Roof Rails in matte Aluminum finish incl. Roof Transport System||$1,475|
|Roof Rails in Black||$1,190|
|Roof Rails in Black incl. Roof Transport System||$1,475|
|Exterior Package in High-gloss Black||$150|
|Front Air Intakes Painted||$1,120|
|Side Rear-View Mirrors Painted||$775|
|8-speed Tiptronic S with Auto Start Stop Function||$0|
|Porsche Ceramic Composite Brake (PCCB)||$8,840|
|Off-road Underbody Protection||$1,330|
|Light Comfort Package||$250|
|xtended LED comfort lighting package||$845|
|Adaptive Cruise Control||$2,690|
|Lane Change Assist (LCA)||$850|
|Seat Ventilation Front||$800|
|Multi-function steering wheel incl. steering-wheel heating||$0|
|4-zone climate control||$1,020|
|Electric Roll-up Sunblind for Rear Side Windows||$450|
|Interior Package in High-gloss Black||$0|
|Interior Package Painted||$2,365|
|Air Vent Slats Painted||$2,330|
|PCM Surround Painted||$1,900|
|Car Key Painted||$335|
The first competitor for the Cayenne Turbo S is the Mercedes-Benz ML63 AMG . This beast features a 5.5-liter twin-turbocharged V-8 engine that pushes 518 horsepower and 516 pound-feet to all four wheels. Inside and out, the two SUVs are very similar, with the Mercedes slightly edging out the Porsche in cleanliness of the interior setup. In terms of price, the Mercedes smashes the Porsche, by coming in at a $96,100 base MSRP. The Porsche comes back with a 0.2-second faster spring to 60 mph, a 2 mpg advantage in the city and a 4 mpg advantage on the highway. Plus, if you’re buying a sports SUV, why not get one cut from the same cloth as the famed 911?
Next up is the X6 M SUV by BMW. This sporty SUV boasts a 4.4-liter V-8 powerplant that pumps out 555 horsepower and 500 pound-feet of torque to all four wheels. It falls far short, carrying just a 6-speed transmission. The X6 M smashes the Porsche Cayenne Turbo S’s acceleration to 60 mph by 0.2 seconds and comes in at over $53,000 cheaper. The two SUVs have sporty exterior styling, but the BMW boasts a simpler interior. The mpg competition is no contest, as the Bimmer only musters out 12 mpg city and 17 mpg highway. The BMW i s a great option if you’re looking to save some money up front, but still want sporty driving and don’t mind losing some of the Porsche’s stylish interior.
Laugh if you like, but if you are really just looking for a little luxury, lots of speed and a reliable name, you have to toss in the Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT8 . It pumps 470 horsepower and 465 pound-feet to all four wheels via a 6.4-liter HEMI V-8 and a 5-speed shiftable auto transmission. It gets to 60 mph in 5.1 seconds – 0.6 seconds slower than the Porsche – and only nets 12 mpg city and 18 mpg highway. However, with a base MSRP that is less than half of the Porsche Cayenne Turbo S’ and an interior that is acceptably comfortable, the Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT8 may be a good option. Plus, think of all the crazy mods you can add onto it with the extra $60K in your bank account.
The Cayenne Turbo S is awesome, don’t get us wrong. The pricing of it, however, is a little outlandish. When you have an AMG and BMW M coming in at $30K less, you have an issue. To boot, the X6 M is significantly faster than and just as stylish as the Cayenne. Sure, the X6 M doesn’t quite say “Kiss my rich ass” as much as the Cayenne Turbo S, but it still has a little ego to it. If you can live with paying the extra $30K, or so, we do recommend the Cayenne, because it was built by a true sports car manufacturer. This mean that you know it is as perfect as it can be. If you’re worried about the $30K, go for the X6 M.
On the complete opposite side of the spectrum; if you are not up for dropping $100K+ on an SUV, just snag up the Grand Cherokee SRT8, drop $10 to $20K in the engine and eat up Porsches with a little Detroit muscle.
- 4.5 seconds to 60 mph
- Massive top speed
- Gorgeous interior
- Outrageously expensive
- Outrun by the BMW X6 M
- The looks are really getting dated
ULTIMATE PORSCHE CAYENNE – THE 550 HP TURBO S
-* Flagship Porsche Cayenne model with 550 hp 4.8-litre twin-turbocharged V8
-* Power increase of 50 hp and 50 Nm torque over Turbo model
-* 0-62mph in 4.5 seconds
-* On sale January 2013, priced from £107,460
With the power output of its twin-turbocharged engine increased by ten per cent to 550 hp, the new Turbo S is the definitive Porsche Cayenne in which to cover ground quickly. With its advanced active chassis dynamics, the supreme four-wheel drive, five-seater surpasses the driving performance of many sports cars.
The intrinsic Cayenne virtues of versatile off-road capabilities, ride comfort and superior towing power have been preserved without exception. Its NEDC fuel consumption of 24.6 mpg is identical to that of the Cayenne Turbo, which makes it more fuel-efficient in relation to its engine power. The new Turbo S model has an extra 50 hp of power compared with the Cayenne Turbo, as well as torque boosted from 700 to 750 Newton metres, which translates to faster acceleration and a higher top speed. The sprint from 0-62 mph takes just 4.5 seconds (0.2 sec quicker), and the car accelerates to a top speed of 175 mph (+ 2 mph).
The Cayenne Turbo S has been carefully configured for maximum dynamic performance. Therefore, it incorporates all relevant control systems as standard equipment. From the already highly-capable Cayenne Turbo it takes the combination of an air suspension and active PASM damping control. To this is added Porsche Dynamic Chassis Control (PDCC), which reduces the roll angle in curves to improve agility and comfort equally. Porsche Torque Vectoring Plus (PTV Plus) is also a standard feature, combining torque vectoring on the rear wheels with an electronically controlled rear differential lock to improve traction, thereby increasing agility in every driving situation. The new Cayenne Turbo S is also equipped with the Sport Chrono package as standard.
The exterior appearance of the Cayenne Turbo S clearly hints at its purposeful intent. Design highlights include the air inlet grilles, headlight housings and mirrors, which are painted in high-gloss black. The 21-inch diameter ‘911 Turbo II’ alloy wheels with coloured Porsche centre badges are designed exclusively for the Cayenne Turbo S; their inside surfaces also painted in high-gloss black.
Porsche designers created new leather interior packages in fresh colours and patterns specifically chosen for the new Cayenne Turbo S. These interior features are available in Black/Carrera Red or Black/Luxor Beige combinations. The bi-colour leather packages that are reserved for the new top model are extended by adding decorative seams in the contrasting colours Carrera Red and Luxor Beige. The Carbon interior package complements the leather features and highlights the sophistication of both vehicle and materials.
The new Cayenne Turbo S will arrive in Porsche Centres in the UK and Ireland in January 2013, priced from £107,460. Fitted to every Cayenne Turbo S is a Porsche Vehicle Tracking System (VTS), a sophisticated vehicle security package approved to Thatcham Category 5 standard, and customers are also able to explore the potential of their new car by participating in a complimentary course at the Porsche Experience Centre, Silverstone.