by Jay Traugott
Porsche simply had no choice. After BMW and Mercedes showed it could be done, the German carmaker had to make a coupe body style version of the one and only Porsche Cayenne. Ever since BMW successfully created the X6 out of the X5, a direct competitor to the Cayenne, Porsche stood by as thousands of buyers ended up behind the wheel of the polarizing X6. Earlier this year, Porsche finally responded with the Cayenne Coupe, essentially a somewhat sleeker version of the Cayenne with less cargo space and rear headroom. Some buyers are more than willing to give that up in favor of style.
It didn't take long for Porsche to launch an even more powerful Cayenne Coupe, the Turbo S E-Hybrid Coupe. Like the standard Cayenne Turbo S E-Hybrid SUV, the Turbo S E-Hybrid Coupe has the same powertrain setup, performance figures, and efficiency only with a sexier appearance. Porsche will have no problem selling them despite the high price.
|Turbo S E-Hybrid Coupe||
4.0-liter Twin-Turbo V8 Hybrid
8 Speed Tiptronic S
It's best to think of the Porsche Cayenne Coupe, regardless of powertrain and trim level, as a Cayenne SUV with sharper styling, a unique rear body section, and a distinctive roofline. It's also worth noting the front windscreen and A-pillar are shallower than in the standard Cayenne, a result of the roofline being lowered by about 20 mm. Porsche even redesigned the rear doors and wheel arches in order to broaden the shoulders by 18 mm. A more muscular stance is the result, and we think it looks great. There's even a fixed roof spoiler that's combined with an adaptive rear spoiler located just below the tailgate window. The spoiler will actually extend by 135 mm at speeds beginning at 56 mph.
For the Cayenne Turbo S E-Hybrid Coupe, Porsche added acid green accents throughout the vehicle, a now-signature trait for all hybrid models.
At first, one may have some difficulty seeing the driver-focused interior differences between a standard Cayenne Coupe and the Turbo S E-Hybrid Coupe, but they exist. The most noticeable changes are in the gauge cluster and central display, both of which provide the driver vital information about the battery's charging state and whether power is coming from the battery or the internal combustion engine. Because the Turbo S E-Hybrid Coupe is the flagship of the Cayenne Coupe lineup, expect only the best interior materials such as high-quality leather upholstery and trim and fine stitching throughout.
Also standard are 18-way adaptive sport seats while the second-row bench, standard in the SUV body style, is replaced by a pair of individual bucket seats. A second-row bench is a no-cost option.
Under the hood lies a 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 making 541 horsepower and 567 lb-ft of torque. Along with the 134-hp electric motor, the two generate a combined total of 670 hp and 663 lb-ft. To compare, the new Ferrari F8 Tributo has 710 hp and 568 lb-ft. The point being is that these are supercar figures coming from a hybrid SUV. All of the Porsche's power is directed to all four wheels through an 8-speed automatic transmission. Performance? Try 0-60 mph in 3.6 seconds – also clocked by the Lamborghini Urus.
Let's be clear: this is not what Toyota Prius owners buy when they win the lottery. This car is for driving enthusiasts. Don't let its hybrid tech fool you. For starters, the Turbo S E-Hybrid Coupe comes standard with a long list of high-performance goodies, including active anti-roll bars, rear-wheel torque vectoring, and huge carbon-ceramic brakes on all four wheels. Porsche has even tossed in its highly regarded and benchmark Sport Chrono package which adds a driving mode selector on the steering wheel and launch control.
In addition, there's a 7.2-kilowatt charger for home charging use. The Turbo S E-Hybrid Coupe's 14.1-kWh battery pack can be recharged in only two and a half hours, but only if owners have access to a 240-volt plug on a 50 amp circuit. And yes, this thing can drive in EV mode only, specifically up to 26 miles at a maximum cruising speed of about 83 mph.
Sales are expected to get underway in the first quarter of 2020. The Porsche Cayenne Turbo S E-Hybrid Coupe will carry an MSRP of $164,400. The Cayenne Turbo S E-Hybrid SUV, to compare, starts at $161,900 – both prices exclude a $1,350 delivery and handling fee.
The competition, in this case, may not necessarily be other high-powered hybrid SUV coupes because, well, there aren't many. In fact, we could easily see the Turbo S E-Hybrid being cross-shopped against the Lamborghini Urus, though it's quite a bit more expensive, beginning at over $200,000. If only power and speed is your thing, there's also the Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk, which belts out 707 hp and 645 lb-ft – for nearly half the price.
The 2020 Porsche Cayenne Turbo S E-Hybrid Coupe, at least compared to the Urus, is something of a bargain. It combines incredible power and performance in what we expect to be a relatively fuel-efficient package.