The third-generation Cayenne will spawn a competitor for the BMW X6

The Porsche Cayenne Coupe is the company’s much-rumored competitor for the BMW X6, Mercedes-Benz GLE Coupe, and the recently unveiled Audi Q8. Rumored to arrive for the 2020 model year, the Cayenne Coupe was spotted on public roads in many forms in recent years.

Rumors of Porsche working on a competitor for the BMW X6 surfaced a few years ago, right before the Germans launched the mid-cycle upgrade for the second-generation Cayenne. Although original reports claimed a 2015 launch, Porsche’s competitor for the BMW X6 failed to show up. In the meantime, Mercedes-Benz came up with its very own proposition, the GLE Coupe. Hopes of seeing a Cayenne coupe based on the second-generation model were almost lost after that, but 2016 brought us the first prototype of Porsche’s X6 fighter. However, instead of a redesigned Cayenne body with a sleeker roofline, our paparazzi spotted an awkward test mule that looks like a Panamera on stilts.

Later on, the Cayenne Coupe began to change and its body moved closer to the production form we all expect to see. Not much is known about it at this point, but it’s expected to use the same underpinnings as the standard Cayenne, as well as the same drivetrains. The name is not yet official so you should take the "Cayenne Coupe" with a grain of salt, but this badge is very likely given that the sleek crossover will be part of the same family. We’re still waiting for Porsche to confirm the new SUV, but until that happens, we created a rendering of the upcoming vehicle, as well as a speculative review about what it may bring to the table.

Continue reading to learn more about the Porsche Cayenne Coupe.

Spy Shots

August 11, 2016 - First testing session

2019 Porsche Cayenne Coupe Exterior Spyshots
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2019 Porsche Cayenne Coupe Exterior Spyshots
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2019 Porsche Cayenne Coupe Exterior Spyshots
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Porsche Cayenne Coupe Exterior

  • Cayenne front and rear ends
  • Short deck lid and spoiler
  • Panamera-style roof
  • Shorter wheelbase
  • Sportier bumpers?
2019 Porsche Cayenne Coupe Exterior Spyshots
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Needless to say, the early test mules were nowhere near a coupe version of the Cayenne.

But that’s because early prototypes are usually made from various parts borrowed from different models. Remember how the Maserati Levante first hit the streets as a higher Ghibli with added weight on its roof? The early Cayenne Coupe was as weird as the Levante in its first months.

The body was some sort of mock-up between the Cayenne and the Panamera. While the roof, the rear section, and the side panels came from the sedan, the front end was taken off the Cayenne, featuring a larger bumper. The side skirts were just plastic panels attached to the body, while the rear bumper had an additional element underneath. Another noticeable detail was that the wheelbase was shorter than a Panamera, while the fenders were wider.

More than a year has passed and a new test car confirms what we knew from the very beginning: that the coupe will borrow most of its styling elements from the third-generation SUV, which was unveiled for the 2018 model year.

As seen in our latest spy shots, it combines the familiar Cayenne features with a roofline similar to the Panamera, a roof spoiler, and even a trunk lid spoiler in order to make the rear end more aggressive compared to the standard Cayenne.

2019 Porsche Cayenne Coupe
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You can see all of the above in our own rendering as well, together with the revised rear door and the shorter wheelbase. While our rendering was made a while back, a newer version from X-Tomi Design shows the coupe design with the 911-inspired front end of the third-generation Panamera, just like the real deal. The newer rendering also has an updated cabin section with a smaller quarter window and a rear door window that mimics the Panamera’s design.

In order to differentiate it even more from the standard SUV, Porsche could also give the Cayenne Coupe a couple of unique features in the front and rear.

The front bumper could be redesigned to include larger air intakes, while the rear fascia could get reshaped taillights and unique exhaust pipes. These features should show up later this year as the current prototype still has unfinished bumpers and some camouflage.

Porsche Cayenne Coupe Interior

  • Identical to the Cayenne
  • Less rear legroom
  • Reduced headroom
  • Smaller trunk?
2018 Porsche Cayenne Interior High Resolution
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Due to the shorter wheelbase, there will be a bit less legroom for rear passengers

The coupe model will be identical to the standard Cayenne inside the cabin, as confirmed by our paparazzi, who managed to get close to the latest prototype. The rear compartment will be a bit different though. Due to the shorter wheelbase, there will be a bit less legroom for rear passengers. Headroom will also decrease due to the coupe-style roof and the smaller quarter windows. However, the Cayenne Coupe shouldn’t be less comfortable than the BMW X6 and Mercedes-Benz GLE Coupe.

Now that the third-gen Cayenne is here, it’s easy to predict what we will find inside the cabin. Look for the same sturdy dashboard with vertical A/C vents at the corners, the massive infotainment display in the middle, and horizontal vents in the center stack.

2018 Porsche Cayenne Interior High Resolution
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Look for a bespoke infotainment display and instrument cluster and a sportier steering wheel

With most controls on the center console, the dashboard looks clean and neat and the two-tone color option gives it a premium look. The instrument cluster has been upgraded to an almost all-digital design with the third-generation model, with the exception of the single analog gauge in the center.

All the upholstery and trim options should be carried over to the coupe model, but the upcoming SUV could also get a number of unique features. Look for a bespoke infotainment display and instrument cluster, a sportier steering wheel, and sports seats as standard equipment.

Porsche Cayenne Coupe Performance

  • V-6 and V-8 engines
  • Up to 541 horsepower in the Turbo model
  • Hybrid version possible
  • GTS model likely too
2019 Porsche Cayenne Coupe Exterior Spyshots
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Engines and transmissions will be sourced from the regular Cayenne

Engines and transmissions will be sourced from the regular Cayenne and there’s a big chance that the coupe model will be offered in all trims. The third-generation Cayenne range begins with a base model that uses a 3.0-liter V-6 rated at 340 horsepower and 331 pound-feet of torque. The 0-to-60 sprint takes 5.6 seconds, while top speed comes in at 152 mph. Next up is the Cayenne S, which uses the same twin-turbo V-6, but upgraded to generate a more solid 440 horsepower and 405 pound-feet of twist. Sprinting to 60 mph is obviously quicker in this model, taking only 4.6 seconds, while top speed increases to 164 mph. Acceleration times are available for models equipped with the Sport Plus package.

A Turbo version will also be offered, powered by a twin-turbo, 4.0-liter V-8. In the regular Cayenne Turbo, this mill cranks out a whopping 541 horsepower and 568 pound-feet of torque and moves the SUV from 0 to 60 mph in a scant 3.9 seconds. Top speed is estimated at 177 mph. Porsche has yet to launch a Turbo S model for the current generation, but it’s bound to happen later this year. The range-topping SUV will use the same 4.0-liter V-8, but output will probably increase to at least 580 horsepower and some 600 pound-feet of torque. The 0-to-60 mph sprint should be reached in 3.7 seconds, to go with a top speed of at least 180 mph.

Should the Cayenne get a GTS package, so will the coupe model

The big question is whether the Cayenne Coupe will also come in E-Hybrid form. In this spec, the SUV pairs a turbocharged, 3.0-liter V-6 to an electric motor for a total output of 455 horsepower and 561 pound-feet of torque. Getting up to 60 mph takes 4.7 seconds, while top speed is limited to 157 mph. Although slower than the Turbo model, the E-Hybrid returns significantly better mileage. Needless to say, the Cayenne Coupe could use an E-Hybrid trim to get the upper hand against the BMW X6 and Mercedes-Benz GLE Coupe.

Should the Cayenne get a GTS package, so will the coupe model. Of course, the ludicrous S E-Hybrid package that pumps a whopping 671 horsepower and 627 pound-feet of twist in the Panamera sedan could also make it into the Cayenne at some point.

Porsche Cayenne Coupe Pricing

2019 Porsche Cayenne Coupe Exterior Exclusive Renderings Computer Renderings and Photoshop
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Coupe-style models are usually a bit more expensive than their standard counterparts, so expect a premium over the regular Cayenne. There’s no indication as to how much more expensive the Cayenne Coupe will be, but Porsche will probably want to price it similar to the competition. For instance, the BMW X6 comes with a 10 percent premium over the X5, so the Cayenne Coupe could get a similar increase over the standard SUV. If this happens, the base model could start from around $72,000, while the S trim could fetch about $88,000 before options. The Turbo will probably come in at around 130,000.

Porsche Cayenne Coupe Competition

BMW X6

2015 BMW X6 High Resolution Exterior
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The X6 was the first coupe-like SUV to hit the market and got a makeover for the 2015 model year. Notable changes include a narrower front fascia, a more aggressive front bumper, and revised taillights and exhaust pipes around back. The vehicle is also 20 pounds lighter than its predecessor, a significant improvement given its slightly longer and wider body. Engine-wise, the second-gen X6 gets its juice from a variety of engines, including BMW’s familiar 3.0-liter inline-six and 4.4-liter V-8 units. While the former generates 302 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque, the latter cranks out a whopping 445 horsepower and 480 pound-feet of twist. There’s also a diesel 3.0-liter V-6 that delivers from 255 in the base model to 376 horses and 546 pound-feet in the M50d. On the high-performance front, the X6 competes with an M version that comes with 567 and 553 pound-feet on tap. This version needs only 4.2 seconds to hit 60 mph from a standing start. U.S. pricing begins from $62,950.

Read our full review of the BMW X6.

Mercedes-Benz GLE Coupe

2016 Mercedes-Benz GLE Coupe High Resolution Exterior
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Mercedes-Benz joined this tiny niche in 2015 with the GLE Coupe, a coupe-style version of the M-Class SUV, renamed the GLE for its mid-cycle facelift. Sporting styling cues and dimensions similar to the X6, the GLE Coupe is a sportier proposition to the boxy SUV it is based on. However, it’s quite old compared to the Bimmer, as its underpinnings and design were introduced all the way back in 2011. But just like the X6, the GLE Coupe comes with numerous drivetrains sipping both gasoline and diesel fuel. The gas range begins with the GLE 400 4Matic rated at 333 horsepower and 354 pound-feet. More power can be had with the AMG GLE43, which uses a 3.0-liter V-6 rated at 385 horsepower. Finally, the AMG GLE63 S, powered by the old 5.5-liter V-8, benefits from 577 horsepower and charges to 60 mph in 4.1 seconds. On the diesel front, there’s the GLE 350d 4Matic good for 258 horsepower and 457 pound-feet. Unfortunately, only the AMG versions are available in the U.S., with pricing starting from $70,500.

Read our full story on the Mercedes-Benz GLE Coupe.

Audi Q8

2019 Audi Q8 Exterior
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While the X6 and the GLE Coupe are rather old, the Q8 was just launched for the 2019 model year, and this alone should makes it the most capable competitor for the upcoming Cayenne Coupe. Based on the Sport Concept from 2017 design-wise, the Q8 isn’t just a sportier version of the Q7. The crossover actually boasts a unique design language and is more aggressive than any other SUV in the lineup. The massive grille, the sporty bumpers, and the sleek profile also make it gorgeous to look at. Inside the cabin, it features the same premium look as the Q7, but it’s packed with big displays, a wider center console, and a new infotainment system. Audi claims it offers better rear headroom than the competition. Drivetrain data remains slim as of this writing, but it should be identical to the Q7. Look for V-6 and V-8 engines and an e-tron version with a 3.0-liter diesel at its core. The Q8 also benefits from the company’s new mild hybrid technology, a 48-volt system that incorporates a lithium-ion battery and a belt alternator starter. Pricing should start from at least $60,000.

Read our full story on the 2019 Audi Q8.

Conclusion

2019 Porsche Cayenne Coupe Exterior Spyshots
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Although it was in an early development stage back in August 2016, the Cayenne Coupe didn’t make other public appearances and slowly disappeared from the media. However, the SUV came back into the spotlight in May 2018, when reports from Germany said that the coupe might make its official debut at the Paris Motor Show in October. A few months later and a new prototype, this time with a production-ready body, came out for a testing session. It’s too early to predict whether the Cayenne Coupe will debut in Paris, but the timing would be just right for Porsche, as the third-generation Cayenne is still fresh and hot, while the BMW X6 is already a few years old and the Mercedes-Benz GLE Coupe is pretty much dated. I guess Porsche could wait until 2019, but the Audi Q8 is already on its way to dealerships and the Cayenne Coupe will have some serios ground to recover.

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References

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Read our full review on the 2018 Porsche Cayenne.

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