Full Article: 2013 Porsche Cayenne Diesel: The Unlikely Porsche - Motor Trend BlogNot that long ago you would never have imagined browsing a Porsche catalogue and coming across the technical details of a diesel engine. Then again, not that long ago the idea of a Porsche SUV would have been preposterous, too. But here we are in 2012, and Porsche’s Cayenne is the company’s best-seller. And from next month, you’ll be able to buy the diesel-powered version here in America. Welcome to Porsche’s brave new world.
Porsche execs agonized long and hard over diesel engines; I can recall former CEO Wendelin Wiedeking informally canvassing the idea over dinner at the Geneva Show years ago. Diesel engines – heavy and slow revving, despite their obvious efficiency – just didn’t seem a suitably Porsche solution to improving fuel consumption and reducing emissions. A high-tech hybrid seemed the better option for a company steeped in performance and race engineering.
Ironically, diesel engines proved their worth at sports car racing’s holy-of-holies, Le Mans, well before Audi’s R18 e-tron quattro hybrid drove to victory in the 24 Hour Race this year, with Audi and Peugeot oil-burners winning six times since 2006. If a diesel can win at Le Mans, then perhaps a Porsche diesel is not such a silly idea after all.
The new Cayenne Diesel is a case in point. I covered more than 9000 miles last year in our recently departed Cayenne Hybrid long termer, but after 845 miles through Germany, Austria and the Czech Republic last month, I’d say the Cayenne Diesel the better car of the two.