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Porsche Cayenne Mk1: Buying guide and review (2002-2010)

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With Porsche having introduced some controversial but necessary company-saving changes to its line-up in the form of the Boxster and water-cooled 996 during the late ‘90s, its core followers were perhaps understandably shaken when in 2002 the Cayenne SUV arrived on the scene. Listening to the critics’ early views, one would think the automotive world was coming to an end. Once the dust had settled though, it was clear that the first generation Cayenne was still pure Porsche underneath – and it was to become the company’s biggest selling model ever. Performance, handling and off-road ability were all at or near the best in class.  Looks may be subjective but there is no denying that this new Porsche SUV, especially in V8 guise was as close to a sports car as the laws of physics would allow.
The first gen cars can offer some serious value to those looking for a Porsche clothed in a family friendly body style. From the efficient diesels to the stonking Turbo V8s there is wide range to choose from, so read on to see what to look for when buying used.

Which Porsche Cayenne to buy?

The first cars in the UK were the 335bhp 4.5-litre V8s. While powerful some did have engine bore issues, so approach with caution. The turbocharged versions followed soon after, providing 165mph performance from a class leading 450bhp. The base 250bhp 3.2-litre V6 was introduced to round off the range (285bhp 3.6l from 2007-on) and Porsche’s customers were treated to another first as they released their first ever diesel offering in 2007. Both petrol and diesel V6 models provide adequate performance and are relatively fuel efficient (especially the diesel) but for those who want to get their kids to school first, only the Turbo models will do. Starting off with 450bhp with the first 4.5-litre cars, the final Turbo S had 550bhp and acceleration to match all but the fastest 911s. 
2007 saw the majority of the range receiving upgraded engines as well as interior and exterior trim. We would recommend this year as a starting point if your budget allows it. The sporty GTS released in 2008 fills in the middle ground, fitted with the upgraded 4.8-litre V8 pumped up to produce 399bhp and possibly the best exhaust note of the entire Cayenne range. The Tiptronic gearbox works well and the majority of Cayennes are fitted with it. Six-speed manuals were available on the non-Turbo cars, but finding one will be tough. Specification levels are high throughout although try to avoid large diameter aftermarket rims as they can spoil the ride quality, and are sometimes weaker than the original. 
In the looks department the Cayenne is definitely an acquired taste, the mid-life facelift helped matters somewhat and it looks its best in GTS spec. Aftermarket body kits from specialists such as Techart can really transform the look of the Cayenne but may not be too all tastes, second hand values can also suffer as a result. For serious performance with serious running costs the Turbo models are still breathtakingly capable, while the naturally aspirated V8s provide a decent slug of power and retain that Porsche feel that the smaller V6 models perhaps lack. 

Performance and specs

Porsche Cayenne S 
Engine 4511cc, 32 valve DOHC V8 
Power 335bhp @ 6000rpm 
Torque 310lb ft @ 2500-5500rpm
Top speed 150mph 
0-62mph 7.2sec 
Fuel consumption 19mpg 
Gearbox Six-speed Tiptronic

Dimensions and weight

Wheelbase 2855mm
Length 4782mm
Width 1928mm
Height 1699mm
Kerb weight 2320kg

Common problems

• 4.8-litre V8s, Turbos and V6 models tend to generally be trouble free although some owners have experienced individual coil pack failures. The early 4.5-litre V8s in the Cayenne S can be a bit more problematic, the Lokasil coating on the cylinder walls can fail leading to a destroyed engine, heavy oil consumption and engine knocking are the early warning signs.

• The majority of cars will have been optioned with the six-speed auto-boxes and these are generally reliable units, one thing to watch out for is intermittent loss of power under acceleration which could indicate a blocked valve in the transmission.

• These cars weigh well over two tonnes, and thanks to the performance at hand, the suspension bushes, brakes and tyres can take a real pounding. Budget for replacing tyres and brakes at least every 15,000 miles. Air suspension systems can develop leaks and pumps tend to get weaker over time. 

• At this stage rust should not be an issue; if any bubbling or peeling is evident it may be a sign of a botched repair job – or a badly fitted bodykit.

• Check for blocked drainage holes as overflowing water can damage the fuse box ECU and ABS controller unit which can lead to extremely costly electrical issues.

Model history

2002: 335bhp 4.5 V8 Porsche Cayenne S launched in UK. Cayenne Turbo introduced with 443bhp
2003: 250bhp 3.2 V6 Cayenne introduced
2006: Cayenne Turbo S with 521bhp becomes available
2007: Cayenne S gets new 4.8 V8 now with 379bhp. Cayenne engine upgraded to 285bhp 3.6 V6 and Cayenne Diesel introduced with 240bhp – the first diesel Porsche ever
2008: Turbo S receives 4.8 V8, with power up to 550bhp. Cayenne GTS introduced with Turbo style body kit and 399bhp 
2009: 399bhp 4.8l V8 Transsyberia limited edition model built – 600 units worldwide
2010: GTS Design Edition 3 built – 1000 units worldwide. First generation Cayenne production comes to an end shortly after

Owners clubs, forums and websites

• www.porscheclubgb.com – UK Porsche owners club
• www.cayenneforums.com – Cayenne forum site

Summary and prices

Starting at £4500, the early V6s offer the best value. While the first V8s may be similarly priced, avoid the S models unless they have had replacement engines (with the upgraded bore lining). Turbos start at £9000 for the early cars right up to £45,000 for run out models. Well maintained, they can be a real performance bargain. For a great all-rounder look to the GTS models, low mileage 2009 models can be found for £25,000 and earlier higher mileage ones are as low as £15,000. Super rare manual versions could be a bit of fun too. 
Running costs are predictably high thanks to heavy fuel consumption and pricey parts so don’t forget to budget for this. Choose wisely though and a first generation Cayenne can be a great family friendly Porsche with a well balanced mix of performance and practicality.
Words: John Tallodi
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Last updated: 26th Sep 2016
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Porsche Cayenne cars for sale

253 Search results
Porsche Cayenne
0 92990 GBP
  • Porsche Cayenne

    £69,995 £69,995

    Variant name:Estate GTS ,Derivative:GTS ,Variant: GTS 3.6 V6 Tiptronic S Finished in Special order Carmine red with full Black and Garnet red smooth finish leather interior OPTIONAL FEATURES FITTED TO THIS CAR Two tone leather interior 3 spoke multifunction heated steering wheel Electric tilt and slide panoramic roof Special order paint finish Front and rear heated seats Privacy glass Porsche exclusive gear shifter Porsche extended warranty Porsche embossed headrests Smooth finish leather interior with extended leather to doors and dash Garnet red instrument dials Garnet red sport chrono compass Front and rear park assist with reversing camera BOSE premium sound system Porsche all weather floor mats Bluetooth mobile phone preparation Front and rear wheel spacers Auto dimming internal and external mirrors Porsche key painted Adaptive sport seats (18-way) with comfort memory package Sport Chrono package plus DAB digital radio STANDARD FEATURES EXCLUSIVE TO THE GTS 20” Sport Design black alloy wheels SportDesign package Bi-Xenon headlights in black Sports exhaust system with twin tailpipes) Alcantara headlining Monochrome exterior black pack ‘Cayenne GTS’ door guards Satin black rear branding STANDARD FEATURES PCM satellite navigation LED front lighting Power fold exterior mirrors Cruise control Electric adjustable seats Red brake calipers Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM) Information centre Sport stainless steel pedals This stunning new 3.6 V6 334bhp Cayenne GTS offers a massive specification and is presented in outstanding condition. The car has covered only 20400 miles from new and comes complete with the balance of Porsche’s extended warranty until March 2018.

    • Year: 2015
    • Mileage: 20400 mi
    • Engine size: 3.6
    For sale
    Alexanders Prestige-Alexanders Prestige
    01423 325800 VIEW CONTACT NUMBER
  • Porsche Cayenne

    £7,493 £7,493

    Privacy Glass, Alloy wheels, 4x4, Full service history ***All vehicles come with a minimum of 6 months RAC warranty, 12 months breakdown and home start**** SILVER, GP Cars are delighted to present for sale this Cayenne 4.5 S Tiptronic S AWD. This car come with a Full service history other features include 20 Inch alloy wheels, Privacy glass, Front/rear parking sensors, Side blades, Multi function height/reach adjustable steering wheel, Electrically adjustable seats, Sat Nav and Air con. The Audio system includes Bluetooth, CD, AUX, MP3, and USB connection. The interior is finished in Black leather with carbon fibre trim.Category 1 alarm and immobilizer. ***This car is HPI clear, we accept credit and debit card payments, we can organise competitive finance for you and will would be happy to take your current vehicle as part exchange. Indoor viewing area. Nationwide delivery available. All vehicles are subject to a £80 admin fee. Viewing by appointment only. ***(GX05FLA), £7,493, If somebody replies with the e-mail address leontommy6gmail.com, please disregard and inform us directly, as they are not associated to our business.

    • Mileage: 110000 mi
    • Engine size: 4500
    For sale
  • Porsche Cayenne

    £22,990 £22,990

    Variant name:D TIPTRONIC S ,Derivative:957 (9PA) ,Variant: Diesel 3.0 V6 Tiptronic Sat-Nav Finished In Basalt Black Metallic With Black Leather Interior, First Registered 27/06/2009, Just 1 Owner And Only 44000 Miles From New with Full Service History, PCM 3 With Off-Road Navigation And Bluetooth Phone Prep, 20" Cayenne Sport Design Alloys, Multi-Media Interface, Air-Conditioning, Electric Front Seats, Heated Front And Rear Seats, Heated Steering Wheel, Privacy Glass, Roof Rails, Front And Rear Park Assist, Power Lift Tailgate, PSM (Traction Control), Compass Display In Instrument Cluster, Onboard Computer, Front And Rear Fog Lamps, Power Assisted Steering, ABS, Electric Windows, Electric Folding Door Mirrors, CD/Radio, Remote Central Locking, Factory Alarm Immobiliser, HPi Checked, 12 Months Warranty.

    • Year: 2009
    • Mileage: 44000 mi
    • Engine size: 3
    For sale

    £10,495 £10,495

    1 Previous owner , Full detailed service History , Stunning Porsche Cayenne , Very rare specification , low mileage, 73000mls( warranted ) , Full service history , 9 service stamps , Last serviced November 2016 major service ,Factory fitted Reversing camera ( very rare option ) , Cruise Control , Full unmarked black leather interior including full secondary leather stitched dash and door cards , Electric steering column with height and rake adjustments , Full command system with UK and Europe Satellite navigation / Premium sound system with multi CD / Telephone module , Multi function steering wheel with Triptronic gear shift , Parking sensors front and rear with visual aid , Privacy glass , Driver and passenger dual air con climate control , Aluminium interior package, Fully electric driver and passenger front seats with multi point lumbar with memory , Red brake callipers , 2o " Porsche Turbo 2 alloy wheels with new tyres , Aluminium roof rails , Anti dazzle rear view mirror , PSM ( Porsche stability management ) , Electrically adjustable folding door mirrors , Folding rear seats , Isofix ( child seat anchorage points ) , This is an opportunity to purchase a stunning 1 owner properly maintained Porsche Cayenne , All manuals and service books present 3 keys , Will be supplied with 12 months fresh Mot and 12 Months premium National parts and labour warranty by Warranty Wise including European break down cover , Any inspection welcome , Competitive finance available on this vehicle , Part exchange welcome

    • Mileage: 73000 mi
    • Engine size: 3.189
    For sale

    £52,995 £52,995

    2013/13 Reg Porsche Cayenne V6 Diesel Finished In White with Full Black Leather. Great Spec to Include- Full ONYX Exterior Package Including Wide Arches and Carbon Effect Rear Spoilers, 22” Alloys, Porsche Communication Management (PCM) with Navigation Module, Panoramic Roof, Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM), Reversing camera with ParkAssist (front and rear), Automatic Tailgate, Mobile Phone Preparation, Heated Windscreen, Privacy Glass, Heated Front Seats, 3-Spoke Sports Steering Wheel with Gearshift Paddles, Monochrome Black Exterior and Interior Package. HPI CLEAR;;THIS PORSCHE CAYENNE HAS 2 PREVIOUS OWNERS AND FULL SERVICE HISTORY. ;; INDOOR SHOWROOM- LOW RATE FINANCE WITH ZERO DEPOSIT OPTIONS- PART EXCHANGE- FREE DRIVE AWAY INSURANCE- NATIONWIDE DELIVERY. ALL MAJOR CREDIT AND DEBIT CARDS ACCEPTED

    • Mileage: 27000 mi
    • Engine size: 2.967
    For sale
  • Porsche Cayenne

    £53,900 £53,900

    Variant name:Diesel Estate ,Variant: Diesel 5dr Tiptronic S, 21 Inch Turbo Alloys, Colour Coded Wheel Arch Extensions, Sat Nav, Pan Roof, Side Steps, Carbon Inlays, BOSE, High Spec, One Owner John Holland Winner of Dealer's Dealer of the Year at the National Car Dealer Awards 2014/15 is delighted to offer for sale this stunning One Owner Porsche Cayenne 3.0 Turbo Diesel. This cherished vehicle has an outstanding upgraded specification with all the must have factory optional extras and is in our opinion the best example of its kind on the market in the UK today. Presented in Jet Black Metallic complimented with Full Black Leather Upholstery with Porsche Crest embossed Headrests and Finished with Carbon Fibre Interior Inlays. Specification includes 21" 911 Turbo Design Diamond Cut Alloy Wheels with Black Calipers and Colour Coded Wheel Arch Extensions, PCM Satellite Navigation, Panoramic Glass Sunroof, Side Steps, Extended Monochrome Black Exterior Package in High Gloss, Roof Rails in Black, Front and Rear Park Assist, Carbon Fibre and Leather 3 Spoke Multi Function Steering Wheel, Paddle Shift, Carbon Fibre Gear knob, DAB Radio with USB and iPod Connectivity, BOSE Surround Sound, Bluetooth, Power Tailgate, Privacy Glass, Heated Front Seats, Stainless Outer Door Sill Guards, Auto dimming Rear View and Exterior Mirrors, Wheel Centres in Full Colour with Porsche Crests, Electric Front Seats, Cruise Control, Xenon Headlights, Electric Folding Exterior Door Mirrors, LED Running Lights plus much more. Supplied with 2 keys and all its original owners manuals and wallet. John Holland has been established for over 40 years supplying a premium level of service in the sale of sports, prestige and collectors cars. We have a team of experienced buyers who hand pick our cars from all parts of the uk so you can buy with confidence all vehicles are HPI Clear and prepared to the highest standard, full dealer facilities available call the sales team for further information.

    • Year: 2015
    • Mileage: 8641 mi
    • Engine size: 3
    For sale
  • Porsche Cayenne

    £9,995 £9,995

    4x4 Rare Turbo Cayenne in Basalt Black with Black Leather. We sold this car to our client, a retired policeman, 3 years ago who sadly passed away, so we have purchased it back. (PLEASE NOTE, THESE ARE THE PHOTOS FROM 3 YEARS AGO - ITS NOT CHANGED MUCH BUT NEW PHOTOS TO UPLOADED VERY SOON!) The car is unusual having the Rear Wheel carrier and the Electrically Retractable Towbar fitted at the factory. It also has an Electric Sunroof, PCM Satellite Navigation, Telephone Module with PAYG Sim included (credit inc), 6 Disc CD Autochanger, Air Suspension with Sport & Comfort Driving modes, Privacy Glass - all factory fitted options. Heated Front Seats. Heated Steering Wheel. Electric Steering Column. Xenon Headlights. Factory Garage door opener. Alcantara Roof Lining. Full Service History with fully stamped book, all owners manuals. 1 Key. 12 Months MOT included. Care Care Plan warranties available for 3, 6, or 12 Months and come with breakdown assistance. UK Nationwide delivery available. View our website to read our many testimonials from happy customers all over the UK. Finance Available - contact us for a quotation. Credit & Debit cards accepted subject to charges. Part Exchanges considered. WWW.GEORGEKINGSLEY.CO.UK - Prestige & Performance Specialist. CHEAPER ROAD TAX!

    • Mileage: 108000 mi
    • Engine size: 4511
    For sale
  • Porsche Cayenne

    £33,990 £33,990

    Full Screen Sat Nav, 22'' Alloy Wheels, Full Beige Leather Interior, Electric Memory And Heated Seats, CD Player, Bluetooth, Front And Rear PDC, Heated Steering Wheel, Air Conditioning, Climate Control, Trip Computer, Cruise Control, Paddle Shift, 4x4 Very Low Mileage. Fantastic Spec Which Includes, 22'' Alloy Wheels, Full Screen Sat Nav, Full Luxor Beige Soft Ruffled Leather Interior, Electrically Adjustable Heated And Memory Seats, Radio CD, Aux, Media Input, Bluetooth, Air Conditioning, Climate Control, Arm Rest, Trip Computer, Cruise Control, Paddle Shift, Comfort Lighting Package, Heated Multifunction Steering Wheel, Servotronic Power Steering, Electric Folding Mirrors, Electric Windows, Electric Boot Operation, Remote Central Locking, Power Steering, Alarm, Immobiliser, Isofix, Privacy Glass. 5 seats, Amethyst Pearl Metallic, Very Low Mileage With A Full Service History. Fantastic Looking Car In Stunning Condition, Open 9.00-5.30 Monday To Saturday, Sundays And Out Of Hours By Appointment Only.

    • Mileage: 30000 mi
    • Engine size: 2967
    For sale
  • Porsche Cayenne

    $28,000(£22,884.40) $28,000(£22,884.40)

    2012 Porsche Cayenne Turbo 48931 miles 4.8L DOHC SMPI aluminum 32-valve twin-turbocharged V8 engine

    • Year: pre 1900
    • Mileage: 48931 mi
    • Engine size: 4.8
    For sale
    Jim Buris
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