The SUV was pretty controversial when it came out in 2002, but now it’s widely respected.
People tend to have a lot of opinions about the Porsche Cayenne. It was the brand’s first SUV, and when it launched back in 2002 for the 2003 model year, people decried it as ugly and offensive because it represented a massive deviation from the brand’s legacy.
Those people weren’t wrong, but what doesn’t get talked about as much is the fact that the Cayenne has always been a brilliant performer and absolutely the model that turned things around for a struggling sports car manufacturer. The Cayenne made Porsche into the company it is today, and that’s partly why Porsche was able to build its 1 millionth Cayenne, which the company announced on Thursday.
Of course, being Porsche, the vehicle that marked such a significant milestone wouldn’t be some humdrum pedestrian base model. Nope, the millionth Cayenne is a GTS model, and it’s painted in the GTS’ signature color — Carmine Red.
The Cayenne continues to be the model to beat for brands that want to get into the high-performance luxury SUV segment, and it’s not an easy target to hit. The Cayenne somehow balances on-road civility and comfort with a surprising turn of performance. That would be tough enough, but then it’s also shockingly good off-road.
Something tells us that Porsche will take a lot less time to get through its second million than it did the first time around.