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First look: Cayenne cops Transsyberia treatment

Rock-hopper: Off-roading will be the new Cayenne S Transsyberia's forte.

Porsche employs Transsyberia technology to create the most off-road capable Cayenne

10 Sep 2008

IF THE GTS is the most road-orientated Cayenne ever produced by Porsche, then the Transsyberia - revealed yesterday in Stuttgart by the hallowed German sports car maker - is the most bush-focussed.

The Cayenne Transsyberia, like the GTS, is based on the naturally-aspirated V8-powered Cayenne S (rather than the force-fed Cayenne Turbo or Turbo S flagships), but is a far more sensible development of Porsche’s 2300kg wagon, which offers standard off-road features most of its luxury SUV rivals lack.

Whether customers of the highly-capable Cayenne S Transsyberia head off-road any more often than owners of the regular Cayenne remains unknown, but they will certainly at least look the part.

25 center imageOn sale now in Germany with a pricetag of 77,558 Euro (about $A136,000, or around the same as the GTS), first deliveries of the Cayenne Transsyberia take place in January, with overseas markets including Australia set to receive limited numbers soon after that.

As reported previously, the Cayenne range will be further expanded via the addition of a 3.0 TDI turbo-diesel version in 2009, before an all-new model comprising Porsche’s first petrol-electric hybrid drive system emerges in 2010.

For now, however, the newest Cayenne variant takes its name from the intercontinental rally from Moscow to the Mongolian Capital of Ulan Bator, covering a distance of about 7200km, which Porsche first won in 2006 and has dominated ever since.

Due to make its global public debut at the Paris motor show on October 2, the Transsyberia comes with the same 298kW/500Nm 4.8-litre direct-injection V8 as the Cayenne GTS, which betters the outputs of the Cayenne S (283kW/500Nm) but not the Cayenne Turbo (368kW/700Nm).

The Transsyberia runs the same 15 per cent shorter final drive ratio as the GTS (4.1:1, versus 3.55:1 for the S), promoting claimed 0-100km/h acceleration in just 6.1 seconds in standard six-speed manual guise - making it as quick as the Cayenne GTS, as well as half a second quicker than the Cayenne S, but a second slower than the Turbo.

Top speed is also the same as the GTS at 253km/h and a six-speed automatic transmission will of course be an option (the latter with a 251km/h top speed).

Transsyberia buyers won’t have to look like they’ve just emerged from a Mongolian bog hole, however, with the more discreet colour combinations of Black/Meteor Grey Metallic and Meteor Grey Metallic/Crystal Silver Metallic to be available alongside the distinctive Black/Orange and Crystal Silver Metallic/Orange rally liveries.

Unique features include 18-inch Series II Cayenne S alloy wheels in contrasting colour (except on Meteor Grey Metallic/Crystal Silver Metallic versions), plus the no-cost option of “Cayenne S Transsyberia” badging at the sides, on the wing mirrors and on the upper part of the extended roof spoiler, which features a double wing profile.

The race-ready Transsyberia's characteristic roof-mounted driving lights will also be a no-cost option for the road version, to be fitted on delivery if desired.

Chassis-wise, like the Cayenne S and GTS the Transsyberia comes with adjustable air suspension, the Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM) electronic variable damping system and Porsche Traction Management (PTM) drivetrain, which directs 62 per cent of torque to the rear axle in normal conditions.

As with all Cayennes, it also features an electronically-controlled longitudinal lock that provides up to 100 per cent centre differential locking in low-range mode, which when activated also set the air suspension to its highest clearance setting.

Available as an optional extra for the Cayenne Transsyberia will be the Offroad Technology Package, which comprises a rear differential lock, extra side sill protection with integrated skid plates, reinforced lower engine protection, fuel tank and rear axle protection and a second tow hook.

Unique interior trim is applied to the Cayenne Transsyberia’s dashboard, instruments and doors, while the seatbelts and floor mat surrounds a coloured to contrast with the exterior.

Alcantara fake-suede trim is employed even more liberally than on the GTS, including on the padded steering wheel, which features a motorsport-style 12 o’clock mark in contrasting colour.

Read more:

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