Twenty years ago Cain proved that an SUV can drive like a Porsche

It is perhaps a trivial matter to say that Cain was mourned by many Porsche enthusiasts after his arrival. Fortunately, the big SUV has proven that it can drive like a proper Porsche, but it can also sell like a hotcake. It’s been two decades since Cain arrived and Porsche is celebrating its anniversary.

Originally named the ‘Colorado’ project, the new Cayenne will be co-developed with Volkswagen. Each company will contribute based on its strengths so in this case, Porsche has built the platform and VW has provided expertise on large volume sales. To further differentiate the two models, each brand will use its own drivetrain and chassis setup. The result is an SUV that has been a sales and innovation leader for Porsche ever since.

Of course, this could not have happened without the attitude that Porsche had during construction. Not only did they want to make it as sporty as possible, but they also had to put a lot of pressure on off-road SUVs that would compete with it. To accomplish this, many systems were proposed, including air suspension and Porsche’s Active Suspension Management. Today, PASM is a key feature throughout the entire lineup.

Read more: Is Cain a Spiritual Successor of 959? Somehow Porsche thinks so

The trend of adding advanced technology to the Cayenne continues in second generation SUVs. Instead of a low-speed transfer field, Porsche switched to a full-time on-demand all-wheel-drive system with a multi-plate clutch that is still in use today. The second-generation Cayenne also features modern hybrid and plug-in hybrid technology in the first Porsche.

The recent generation has continued to have success on the road, off-road and on the sales front. An aluminum body shell was created to save weight while a three-chamber air suspension and rear steering were added to improve ride and handling. The Cayenne Turbo GT, the family’s most sporty, set a lap record for an SUV in Nurburgring at just 7:38: 925, four seconds faster than the previous record holder Audi RS Q8.

Throughout these two decades, Cayenne has been a huge success for the brand. The first generation alone sold more than 276,000 units, and by 2020 it was the millionth coin sold out of production line. According to Porsche, more than 80,000 SUVs were sold last year. Twenty more years of refinement here.

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