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Your Porsche Could Have An Extremely Embarrassing Problem

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That's why the manufacturer's recalling a hundred thousand of them.

Porsche keeps setting new sales records, but it's still hardly what we'd call a "mass-market" or "mainstream" automaker. So when it issues a recall notice approaching six digits in scope, we sit up and take notice. And that's just what it's done here.

The German manufacturer, best known for its sports cars, has sent out a recall notice covering 99,665 of its vehicles in the United States alone – all of them from the first-generation Cayenne and Panamera families, equipped with automatic (or dual-clutch) transmissions. And it's not just for some regulatory or clerical issue, either.

According to the notice issued by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, some earlier Panameras and Cayennes could roll away by themselves. Apparently the problem comes down to a cable bushing connecting the transmission lever to the gearbox. So the driver could think he or she has left the vehicle in Park, but it may not be actually engaged, allowing the vehicle to roll away without notice.

Those units affected range from the 2003 to 2016 model years and include the Cayenne, Cayenne S, Cayenne Turbo, and Cayenne Turbo S, as well as the Panamera, Panamera 4, Panamera 4S, Panamera GTS, Panamera Turbo, and Panamera Turbo S.

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The nearly 100,000 units represents a good three years' worth of Porsche sales in the United States. While it sold over 57,000 vehicles here last year, it averaged 33,460 vehicles per year during the period in question. And while those figures include other models like the Boxster/Cayman and 911, the Cayenne and Panamera are two of the company's hottest sellers – prolific Macan having only been introduced in 2014, towards the end of the recall's scope. So chances are, in short, that if you drive a four-door Porsche that's more than a few years old, you'll have to bring it in for service.