We finally have a clearer picture of the 2011 Porsche Cayenne, which will go on sale in May. Aside from prototypes being spotted of Porsche's next-generation Cayenne in Germany several times that revealed its styling, we've also learned what its final specifications are from a private press event last month.
Three engine options will be available initially: an entry-level 3.6-liter V-6 with 300hp, a naturally aspirated 4.8-liter V-8 with 400-horsepower and the top-of-the-line twin-turbocharged 4.8-liter V-8 with 500hp.
Making a comeback is the Cayenne Diesel, a 3.9-liter V-6 turbodiesel engine that is able to produce 240hp. A hybrid version will combine a supercharged 330hp 3.0-liter gasoline V-6 with a 47hp electric motor running on lithium-ion batteries.
Unfortunately, US consumers won't be able to get their hands on the diesel or the hybrid anytime soon. Overseas models will also benefit from a fuel-saving engine stop-start system.
Each Porsche Cayenne will be offered with an 8-speed automatic transmission as standard. Since Porsche will no longer offer a low-speed transfer case, this means that the 2011 Porsche Cayenne is now strictly an on-road vehicle.
The second-generation Cayenne is smaller and is 10% lighter. As a result, it has greater performance and efficiency even while its power levels are not considerably higher than those of the current model. The 2011 Porsche Cayenne S dropped 396 pounds and now weighs 4,553-pounds.
The weight reduction is a result of new construction processes that include increased use of aluminum and the removal of the two-speed transfer case.
Porsche claims that its gasoline-powered Cayennes will be on average 23% more fuel-efficient than the current Cayenne range. The most economical would be the Cayenne Hybrid, which will achieve an estimated 28.7 mpg fuel economy rating for the European combined cycle.