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Porsche prices Cayenne Hybrid at $160K

First hybrid: Porsche’s Cayenne S Hybrid is set to lob in July.

$12,000 premium for lean, mean hybrid Cayenne SUV as Porsche goes ‘green’

Porsche logo31 Mar 2010

By RON HAMMERTON

PORSCHE’S first hybrid – the Cayenne S Hybrid luxury SUV – will command a $12,000 premium over the conventional V8 Cayenne S when the new range lands in Australia on July 24.

At $159,900, the hybrid Cayenne will be the second most expensive model in the range, although well short of the $239,900 flagship Cayenne Turbo.

The fuel-sipping hybrid SUV, which boasts a European combined fuel consumption cycle of 8.2 litres per 100km and CO2 emissions of 193 grams per kilometre, will not be the most expensive hybrid on the market. That honour goes to the Lexus LS600hL four-seater, at $250,900 – $90,000 more than the Cayenne Hybrid starting price.

Announcing pricetags for the redesigned, lighter, leaner five-model Cayenne range today, Porsche Cars Australia (PCA) said price rises had been restricted to about one per cent over the previous range, despite an estimated $12,000 gain in value of standard equipment and technical upgrades.

25 center image The range opens with the petrol Cayenne V6 at $103,500 – a $1000 hike over the previous generation.

The diesel version will command a $1000 premium, at $104,500 (up $800), while the V8 Cayenne S will lob in showrooms at $147,900 (up $1000).

Next is the new Cayenne S Hybrid, at $159,900, and the range-topping Cayenne Turbo on $239,900 (up $2700).

As an SUV, the Cayenne did not benefit from the Australian government’s recent import duty cuts for passenger cars, remaining on a five per cent tariff.

The first models to arrive will be the high-end versions – Cayenne S, Cayenne S Hybrid and Cayenne Turbo. They will be followed about a month later by the standard V6 petrol and diesel models.

Porsche hopes the hybrid version will carve out 15 per cent of Cayenne sales, adding incremental volume along the way.

The Cayenne’s new parallel hybrid system combines an Audi-sourced 245kW supercharged 3.0-litre petrol V6 with a 34kW electric motor for a maximum output of 279kW and 580Nm.

Porsche claims this drivetrain – which will also appear in the upcoming Volkswagen Touareg Hybrid and, most likely, the next Audi Q7 range – can deliver the economy of a six-cylinder with the performance of a Cayenne V8.

According to Porsche, this parallel system is not suitable for its sports cars, and it is working on a fresh hybrid powertrain that will be put to a severe test in a factory 911 GT3 R entered in this year’s Nurburgring 24-Hour in Germany in May.

The Porsche features kinetic energy recovery system (KERS) technology developed by the Williams Formula 1 team. Braking energy is stored and can be used to drive a pair of electric motors mated to the front wheels of the all-wheel-drive car.

Last weekend, the Porsche GT3 Hybrid finished a respectable sixth out of 160 entries in a qualifying race for the main event.

Porsche’s fuel-efficiency gains are not confined to the hybrid model, with a claimed 23 per cent improvement across the range, thanks at least in part to a weight reduction push that has shave 180kg from the Cayenne S, for example.

A new eight-speed Tiptronic gearbox is among the improvements in the re-worked range.

PCA managing director Michael Winkler said Porsche had made a great car even better from a design, engineering and sporty driving point of view.

“To showcase our hybrid technology and add more equipment across the model range to improve the price-value relationship is also extremely positive,” he said.

Porsche Cayenne range pricing:
V6 petrol (a) $103,500
V6 diesel (a) $104,500
S V8 (a) $147,900
S Hybrid $159,900
Turbo (a) $239,900

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