We shouldn’t have to tell you that coupe-inspired vehicles are in style – just about every car brand has a slope-roofed sedan or SUV (or both) in service at your local shopping center and downtown strip. Heck, they even follow us into our Instagram feeds. These swoopy models are less practical and more expensive than their more traditional counterparts, but the trade-offs are well worth the curb appeal – particularly in the luxury space.
BMW pioneered the SUV coupe segment a dozen years ago with the X6, but most rivals were quick to catch-up. Not Porsche. Though its compact Macan has rocked a ramping roofline for years, the mid-size Cayenne has clung to a more horizontal plane. That changes with the 2020 Cayenne Coupe. Aimed squarely at the Mercedes-Benz GLE Coupe, Audi Q8, and aforementioned X6, the Cayenne Coupe is indeed late to the party, but fashionably so.
The effortlessness of the Cayenne Coupe’s design begs the question as to whether years of design evolution haven’t overextended competing designers. In contrast to the X6 and GLE Coupe’s harsh angles and bulging panels, respectively, the Cayenne Coupe flows neatly from nose to tail, blending top to trunk as if the Cayenne has always styled its hair.
Inside, material quality prevails, with soft leather and high-end trims adorning every surface. The tech matches the contemporary design – a wide touchscreen infotainment splits the front occupants, while an analogue tachometer (a Porsche signature) bisects a pair of digital gauges nestled beyond a leather-wrapped steering wheel. Rear passengers are treated to easy entry – despite the tapering roofline – ample head and leg room, and reclining seat backs.
Beauty inside and out would have you believe the Cayenne Coupe only belongs in the public eye. Not so. Porsche’s stylized SUV is, in fact, desperate for adventure. The clues are subtle: an adaptive air suspension seems primed for road handling and ride quality (where, admittedly, the vehicle excels), but the same system can extend ground clearance significantly and soak up rougher terrain. In addition to the four performance-oriented drive modes accessible via steering wheel dial, the Cayenne Coupe hides four additional off-road modes within its interface.
21-inch wheels and summer tires won’t suit rock crawling escapades, but by optimizing its traction control, braking, and all-wheel drive systems, the Cayenne Coupe makes quick work of challenging conditions. The freedom is yours to explore a fire road or trail in search of a secluded campsite – just be prepared for a few slack-jawed expressions en route.
And when thoughts of a hot shower and soft bed drown out the call of the wild, rejoice, for a twisting mountain road lays between you and the highway. Porsche’s driving dynamics are experienced as plainly in this trendy SUV as in its iconic 911 sports car; control, precision, and engagement characterize every shift of the chassis. Let’s just hope your family is as keen on corners.
Covered in the remnants of a weekend getaway, the Cayenne Coupe still intrigues, but a wash (for you and the car) wouldn’t hurt before finding a posh place to eat.