Wed | Nov 21, 2018

Bridging the gap | 2017 Porsche Cayenne - Platinum edition

Published:Sunday | January 21, 2018 | 12:00 AMJason Lawson

The new Porsche Cayenne Platinum Edition attempts to bridge the gap between the sports cars Porsche have been known to build and the SUVs that modern consumers are demanding and have become accustomed to. Some may wonder if Porsche can build an SUV and still keep the company's sporty essence and feel. Its exterior definitely says Porsche, with a sleek aerodynamic body and clean lines and styling that sits on twenty-inch wheels. The headlights look cutting edge, especially their unique four-point daytime running light pattern, which looks like an elaborate military targeting system.

 

LEATHER INTERIOR

 

The interior of the Cayenne has sporty, light-tan leather door cards, combined with chocolate-brown arm rests. A similar colour integration is located in the centre console, which is also light tan with dark-brown hang-on handles on either side. The seats are all light-tan leather, with the centre having sporty perforated leather between the large supportive side bolsters displaying a stylish contrast of the different leather types in the Porsche's cockpit.

The brown leather steering wheel matches the brown dashboard and is also double stitched with contrasting light-coloured threads. The stylish front and rear seats have Porsche logos embossed on each head rest, finishing the look. One can order custom interior combinations from a wide variety of colour and material options, allowing the owner to really customise his Cayenne to his individual tastes and preferences.

Sitting in the Porsche's cockpit feels as good as you would think it would. It is definitely a sports-oriented look and feel as the bucket seat holds you comfortably and firmly. The position of the shifter in its console feels like it could comfortably accommodate a manual shifter. However, it is a traditional Tiptronic automatic with a semiautomatic feature engaged when pushed to the left and comfortably controlled from its position.

In the centre console lies a seven-inch touch-screen and a media centre, with two SD card inputs in addition to a USB and an AUX input and DVD slot. The Bose sound system is of premium quality with multiple speakers and a molded subwoofer in the tyre, specially shaped to accommodate the spare tyre.

 

FRONT, SIDE, REAR CAMERAS

 

The Cayenne is also equipped with front, side and rear cameras. The proximity sensors will detect an incoming object such as a motorcycle from when it approaches closely from the rear, passes on the side, until it moves to the front of the vehicle, keeping it in the sights of the cameras while displaying it all on the seven-inch monitor.

When the engine starts, it has a refined sporty growl pleasing to the ear, yet it is quiet enough not to wake younger sleeping passengers. The ride in the Porsche in regular driving mode is a smooth one. Everything seems to work together seamlessly while driving in the regular mode, shifting smoothly through the gears while cruising through traffic. The Porsche manages the rougher road surfaces with ease, making them feel like smooth terrain.

In sport mode, the gears are held longer before changing, and shift points are set higher to a more aggressive setting. Throttle response is excellent with no noticeable delays. The auto start-stop function seems to be disengaged in this mode, and at standstill such as at the traffic light, the Cayenne awaits your hopefully aggressive throttle input. Steering feedback improves in this mode, and a true driver will appreciate its sporty stiffness while negotiating corners or manoeuvering around other vehicles through traffic.

The Cayenne's handling is very good, feeling well balanced as all its components work together in harmony while under light-to-medium pressure to keep planted on the pavement.

Braking on the Porsche doesn't seem overly aggressive when used under normal braking conditions but does not disappoint either when used more harshly for quick stops or emergencies.

Sporty and athletic is the theme Porsche is using to describe the persona or essence of the Cayenne. One may wonder, with four doors, an engine in the front, and an elevated stance, if the Cayenne could capture the essence of Porsche, let alone seem sporty and athletic. I think it has and with great style. Its Jekyll-and-Hyde personality allows one to please a spouse or significant other looking for luxurious comfort and convenience of a SUV while still having the capability to excite, entertain, and perform for one who is more appreciative of the high-performance oriented automobile experience for which Porsche is legendary.

- Model tested: 2017 Porsche Cayenne Platinum Edition

- Size class: Luxury Mid-size SUV

- Body type: SUV

- Drivetrain: 8-speed automatic AWD Tiptronic

- Engine info: Normally aspirated 3.6 litre

- Power output: 300hp/285 ft/lbs torque (Claimed)

- Price as tested:15,800,000 $JA

- Available at Porsche Jamaica 50-52 Knutsford Boulevard, Kingston, (876) 290-2911.