- An Automotive News story this week, using a Porsche dealer meeting as its source, suggests a top-end three-row luxury SUV could be coming. A Porsche spokesman contacted by Car and Driver declined comment.
- The new SUV would sit above the Cayenne in the Porsche lineup, and it could come in plug-in-hybrid and all-electric versions, the report said.
- After all, the Cayenne is Porsche’s biggest seller, and Porsche undoubtedly would like to have a three-row SUV to put up against BMW, Audi, and Cadillac luxury entries.
Three-row luxury SUVs are doing big business right now, something which is likely making those top-end automakers without one in the lineup wonder about filling the gap. That certainly seems to be the case at Porsche, with Automotive News reporting the company is seriously considering a larger sport-ute that would be positioned above the existing Cayenne. A Porsche spokesperson contacted by Car and Driver responded with the statement, “As a matter of policy, we don’t speculate or comment on potential future product. “
The AN story says that a meeting of dealers at Porsche’s U.S. headquarters in Atlanta was shown a rendering of this potential car, with a design that one of the people to see it described as “part sedan, part crossover” with both three rows of seats and a plug-in-hybrid powertrain, likely one related to the 670-hp hybridized V-8 already offered in the Cayenne Turbo S E-Hybrid. A pure-EV version is also a strong possibility given the speed at which Porsche is moving toward electrification—and the speed at which bans on the sale of internal-combustion engines are approaching in many European markets.
Globally, the Cayenne is currently Porsche’s most successful model, selling in volumes that continue to amply justify the once controversial decision for the world’s most famous sports-car maker to diversify into SUVs. Last year the company sold nearly 93,000 around the world, over a third of its total production of 272,000 cars. By contrast, a relatively modest 34,000 of the iconic 911 were sold worldwide.
Not that Porsche fans with three or more kids should get too excited yet—it could well not be happening. The company refused to confirm or deny the existence of a potential future model to AN but did say that it often shares ideas for future cars under what is called the Porsche Unseen initiative. This may be one of those.
Taking a wider view of this bit of the industry suggests it would certainly be easy to make the case for a model above the Cayenne. In the U.S., luxury three-row SUVs are enjoying booming demand. Cadillac sold nearly 31,000 Escalades here during the first three-quarters of 2021, and BMW managed nearly 16,500 of our segment-favorite X7 in the same period. We suspect many Porsche dealers are feeling frustrated at having to miss the bonanza; although the closely related Audi Q7 and Bentley Bentayga are both offered with three rows of seats, the current Cayenne has been designed to only accommodate two.
Will this add up to a Porsche-for-more? We’ll have to wait and see.
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