Whenever I’ve driven a Porsche, there’s a certain growl to the engine that you can feel throughout my body, not just hear. Everything is tuned just right and it’s got an unmistakeable drive quality.
When I picked up my 2015 Cayenne S E-Hybrid for a week, I fully realized it was a plug-in hybrid and not by the green calipers and splashes of green throughout the vehicle. Emails told me so, the spec sheet told me so. Perhaps there was a slight disconnect because as I was doing 110 km/h on the highway ride home, I had a mild panic attack when the RPM’s were at 0.
“Great. I’ve had this nearly $80,000 SUV for a few minutes and I’ve broken it. But the speedometer says 110 km/h. And I’m still moving, not coasting. What’s happening?”
What was happening was the electric portion of the motor propelling me forward. Because it’s a plug in hybrid. And that’s what this one does. I’m fairly certain a few gray hairs showed up in those few seconds of uncertainty.
Porsche has beat the competition out of the gate and owns the title of “first plug in hybrid, full sized SUV”. And now that gives them a total of three offerings, including the Panamera S E-Hybrid and the stunning 918 Spyder. They’re pushing aggressively to combine power, luxury and trying to save the planet for good measure.
In powerful Porsche manner, they’ve loaded a combined 416 horsepower via and eight speed transmission and a supercharged 3.0 V6 motor with 95 horsepower electric motor. Come on, now; you had to know Porsche would still find a way to make this hybrid offering still exciting to drive via the power component.
The Cayenne S E-Hybrid goes up to 125 km/h electrically (which explains why my RPM’s flat lined on the highway and you can travel 35 km worth on the electric portion.
Battery-wise, there’s a huge 10.8 kWh lithium ion battery on board.
So what happens if you drain the battery and still want to save some money at the pump? You plug in the vehicle (it comes with an adapter that allows you to plug it into a regular outlet) and three hours later, you’ll ready to try and keep the gas tank full as you roam the streets and highways of southern Ontario…or wherever you happen to be.
Impressively, Porsche managed to jam five gauges on the dashboard and still make all the information digestible. Mind you, with all the on-board info available, separating it into five clusters was the best way to accomplish that.
Predictably, Porsche has engineered this vehicle beautifully inside and out and the pictures included in this piece are definitely worth 1,000 words of mine.
If there’s any “knock” for the E-Hybrid, it’s that some may find it a touch sluggish compared to the other Cayenne’s in the fleet. Really, though, over 400 horsepower for a full sized SUV is still respectable and as a bonus, you’re not using as much fuel. So you can have your Porsche-themed cake and save enough to buy a full sized cake for a few of your closest friends.
While you’re eating your cake, your soundtrack will be powered by a Burmester High-End Surround System cranking out over 1,000 watts through 16 speakers. So you’ll still have a great audio output while you’re saving good ol’ Mother Earth.
If you’re conscious of how you drive and take the lead out from your right foot, you’ll find yourself maximizing what the Cayenne S E-Hybrid has to offer consumption wise.
The folks at Porsche have crafted an impressive vehicle for the luxury SUV market who want a hybrid.
They’re taking a proactive approach to the future of how automobiles are powered and have made a substantial splash in an ocean of competition and I’m anxious to see what the ripples will produce.
Engine: 3.0 V6
Gas tank capacity: 80 Litres
Fuel Type: Premium