2011 Porsche Cayenne Hybrid

2011 Porsche Cayenne Hybrid Prices
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2011 Porsche Cayenne Hybrid Fuel Economy
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2011 Porsche Cayenne S Hybrid: Flash Drive

By Staff of MSN Autos

The Cayenne S Hybrid is easily worthy of being called a Porsche. In fact, it's the most satisfying modern Porsche I've driven: better than the 911 and better than the Cayman. The Cayenne hides its generous weight completely and is the best-handling SUV on the road. It's sporty yet completely comfortable, with exceptional body control and no wallowing through a corner. The hybrid system is well-integrated, and although the electric motor powered the car only an average of 25 percent of the time, the switch between gasoline and electric power was always seamless. Yet in spite of the effective use of the regenerative battery and the electric motors, I achieved only about 20 mpg in mixed driving. That's very good for an SUV, but an all-wheel-drive station wagon seems like tough competition for anyone with second thoughts about spending $87,000 on an all-purpose new car. –Paul Hagger

The fuel economy of the Porsche Cayenne S Hybrid is really impressive; I averaged more than 20 mpg in mixed driving. Rather than just shutting off at a stop, the Cayenne S Hybrid actually shuts down the gasoline engine at cruising speed. It takes a little while to adjust to seeing the tachometer sitting at zero, but the engine comes back on instantly at the touch of the throttle pedal. However, the Cayenne S Hybrid doesn't feel enough like a Porsche to me. Even in sport mode, the steering has a disconnected feel. And I'm still not a fan of Cayenne styling, even with the design updates. And finally, the trip computer and audio functions are still too complicated. It shouldn't require navigating to a submenu to check the mpg on a hybrid vehicle. –Mike Meredith

The new Porsche Cayenne Hybrid is one of the most impressive gas-electrics I've driven. The hybrid system is seamless, whether you're moving through stop-and-go traffic or cruising at 70 mph on the freeway. Unlike other systems, the Porsche will shut off the engine at highway speeds when it's not needed, then match the revs on the engine almost instantly when more power is needed. In my 22-minute commute, the engine was off for seven minutes — no other hybrid on the market can do that at highway speeds. While the Cayenne is impressive as a hybrid, it's less impressive as a Porsche. The brakes are very grabby, making it almost impossible to stop smoothly. Power is more than adequate — much more powerful than other hybrids on the market — but the Cayenne is heavy, even without a stack of batteries, and the performance just isn't at the level of what I'd expect from a Porsche. –Perry Stern

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BB05 - 9/17/2014 11:11:03 AM