Porsche Cayenne SUV (2011-2017) - Interior & comfort
The Porsche Cayenne boasts a well built and luxurious interior
Porsche Cayenne dashboard
Despite sitting high up in the Porsche Cayenne, the dashboard and centre console have been designed to wrap around the driver, so it feels more natural to drive quickly. With so much grip, it's important you feel supported in corners, and the Cayenne's leather seats do a great job of holding you in place while also offering excellent comfort for longer trips.
The Cayenne benefits from a great interior that’s impeccably well put together with beautifully made switches, meaning the cabin feels very well built and solid. There are lots of personalisation options available, too. Our only serious complaint is the confusing number of buttons and switches on the centre console. While it's less car-like and closer to a conventional 4x4 than the Cayenne, the Range Rover Sport is a more relaxing place to spend time. Similarly, the iDrive system in the BMW X5 feels easier to use, because it has a single rotary dial with fewer buttons around it.
For a performance-orientated SUV, the Cayenne deals with rough roads very well, particularly when fitted with air suspension. Smaller alloy wheels provide the most comfort – and keep more road noise out of the cabin – but it's easy to see why the bigger, more stylish options are so popular. Rear visibility is poor because of a small rear window and thick tailgate, so you'll need to rely on parking sensors to make reversing easier.
At motorway speeds, the Cayenne isn't as refined as the BMW X5 or Range Rover Sport. If you do choose the larger 20 or 21-inch alloy wheels, tyre noise is louder than most people would like in a luxury SUV. Also, there's quite a lot of wind noise around the bulky door mirrors.
The entry-level Cayenne is fitted with dual-zone climate control, electrically adjustable seats, 18-inch alloy wheels, cruise control, a seven-inch touchscreen and a powered tailgate. There are numerous options, and most are expensive, so it's possible (and very easy) to add thousands of pounds to the total price.
Extras include sat nav, wireless internet, enhanced Bose or Burmester stereos and even a mahogany interior trim package. Surprisingly (and disappointingly for a car this expensive) a DAB digital radio is only fitted as standard to the near-six-figure Cayenne Turbo. Bluetooth, DAB and sat nav are all standard on the Range Rover Sport. We think the £1,100 Porsche Adaptive Suspension Management (PASM, seen above) is a worthwhile extra, as it really transforms the Cayenne's ride quality on poor road surfaces.