2015 Porsche Cayenne S E-Hybrid Review

DEC 10 2014 BY MICHAEL BEINENSON 22

Porsche Cayenne S E-Hybrid - Image Credit: Michael Beinenson

Porsche Cayenne S E-Hybrid – Image Credit: Michael Beinenson

We assume that most of you reading this have an electric propulsion vehicle or at least have driven one. Being an owner of two, I have struggled to find balance when driving our large SUV with the entire family (in-laws too) in the vehicle. The moment you let off the gas pedal, you realize how much energy is wasted when the vehicle must be stopped using friction and none of that energy is recovered. Making an SUV with a PHEV system is only natural due to the sheer weight and size of the automobile.

Porsche is not the first to offer a PHEV SUV, but Porsche is the first to bring one to United States and it’s called the Cayenne S E-Hybrid.

The first thing most EV drivers are looking for when testing a new vehicle is how much “electric torque” is available. Well there is very little here with the 2015 Porsche Cayenne S E-Hybrid. In fact, it feels at ~20% of Nissan LEAF acceleration.

With only 14 miles of EPA rated EV range (full EPA report here), the Cayenne S E-Hybrid is not likely to transport you to a nearby city on EV power alone, but you will use the 10 kWh battery capacity to achieve SUV efficiency higher than anything available on the U.S. market today.

Porsche Cayenne S E-Hybrid delivers a moderate EV experience with the expected Porsche power behind it. The transition from electric to gasoline mode is seamless.

The EPA has the final ratings at 47 MPGe and 22 MPG Gasoline. Now, that is not even close to the plug-in hybrid cars out there.  However, for a Porsche SUV to be at 22 MPG, that’s at least somewhat impressive.

Full Porsche Cayenne S E-Hybrid details, pricing and specs can be found here.

Porsche Cayenne S E-Hybrid - Image Credit: Michael Beinenson

Porsche Cayenne S E-Hybrid – Image Credit: Michael Beinenson

The particular Porsche SUV that I drove had the an adjustable air suspension option and Porsche claims that can further add to the fuel economy.

The vehicle has only a 3.3 kWh on-board charger that perhaps is enough for this battery size, but the biggest surprise was that the portable charger that can do both 110v and 220v with an included adapter. It is very bulky compared to Tesla’s unit, but it should put other OEMs on notice to start producing a dual-voltage portable charger.

Porsche Cayenne S E-Hybrid - Image Credit: Michael Beinenson

Porsche Cayenne S E-Hybrid – Image Credit: Michael Beinenson

The Cayenne E-Hybrid is extremely quick. With the help of the electric motor, 5.4 seconds for the 0 to 60 mph dash sure feels powerful. Handing is fantastic and Porsche is not compromising on any aspects of performance with the addition of plug in hybrid components.

For those that are not willing to wait for the Tesla Model X to finally enter production, perhaps this SUV could be an alternative.

The vehicle tested was priced at ~$100,000 (the plug-in Cayenne starts at $76,400 however), or right within the range of Tesla Model X territory, therefore a decision to buy this vehicle purely on its plug-in characteristics might be a difficult, but it is the only choice we in the U.S. have right now until the BMW X5 PHEV arrives next summer.

Porsche Cayenne S E-Hybrid - Image Credit: Michael Beinenson

Porsche Cayenne S E-Hybrid – Image Credit: Michael Beinenson

Porsche Cayenne S E-Hybrid - Image Credit: Michael Beinenson

Porsche Cayenne S E-Hybrid – Image Credit: Michael Beinenson

Porsche Cayenne S E-Hybrid - Image Credit: Michael Beinenson

Porsche Cayenne S E-Hybrid – Image Credit: Michael Beinenson

Porsche Cayenne S E-Hybrid - Image Credit: Michael Beinenson

Porsche Cayenne S E-Hybrid – Image Credit: Michael Beinenson

Categories: Porsche, Test Drives

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22 Comments on "2015 Porsche Cayenne S E-Hybrid Review"

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Mark B. Spiegel

>>For those that are not willing to wait for the Tesla Model X to finally enter production, perhaps this SUV could be an alternative.<>The vehicle tested was priced at ~$100,000, or right within the range of Tesla Model X territory…<>…it is the only choice we in the U.S. have right now until the BMW X5 PHEV arrives next summer.<<

Don't forget the Volvo XC-90 and the new Audi Q7 diesel plug-ins, both of which should be here by late summer.

Mark B. Spiegel

Also, the base price of the Cayenne plug-in is $76,400 which means around $71,000 with the Porsche dealer’s typical 7% discount.

Mark B. Spiegel

And what about those who want electric drive for short trips around town and 500 miles of range with five-minute refills for longer trips?

(Sorry for the three posts– I initially put them all in one but for some reason the original was truncated.)

SIvad

“And what about those who want electric drive for short trips around town”

At 20% the power of the Leaf? No thanks. More than likely most will never drive this in EV only mode but will use the battery to just improve the everyday mpg. I think that’s just fine but it shouldn’t be shoehorned into the same category as the Model X. Totally different cars.

Surprising that no one mentioned the current king of PHEV SUVs, Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV.

It still doesn’t have a set release date in the US.

“Late 2015” is the latest update, I think. That really means if you don’t live in California, you can’t get one until sometime in 2016.

koz

Only combined ratings shown on sticker per EPA’s finite wisdom. Some day they will rub a couple of neurons together and realize plug-ins should have that number broken out.

Sorry, I’m just not impressed. The vehicle isn’t all that attractive to me. And even if it were, at that price range, I’d expect so much more. I’m also surprised that 10 Kwh of battery capacity only gets you 14 miles of All-electric range. I would have expected at least 20 miles, which I consider the bare minimum acceptable range for a PHEV. Now, if we were talking about a sub-$20,000 automobile, I would think 14 miles of AER would be awesome. But at 100,000 I just expect more.

offib

‘We assume that most of you reading this have an electric propulsion vehicle or at least have driven one.’

Humph… I briefly sat in a Model S and gawk in aww at every LEAF, i-MiEV to i8 I see on the street. Isn’t that enough!

Great to see more info on the Cayenne phev. Bit shocked to see the MPGe. I thought the Karma was bad. I thought the bulk of FCEVs like the FCX and Tuscon FCEV were really bad, but this takes that bloody cake! Just in the hell was that possible, Porsche?

I keep scrolling back up to see it again, what an ugly figure. The MPGe of course.

Uromd

Only for 5 passengers. I’d be more interested if it sat 7 like the x will.

mustang_sallad

The point of this car clearly isn’t to provide any meaningful EV-mode performance, but rather to provide impressive Hybrid mode performance, thanks to a large battery charged up on cheap grid electricity. From what I can tell, here’s a ranking of plug-in SUVs in terms of increasing electrification: Cayenne, XC90, X5, Outlander, Model X

article quote:

“The first thing most EV drivers are looking for when testing a new vehicle is how much “electric torque” is available. Well there is very little here with the 2015 Porsche Cayenne S E-Hybrid.”

Gee I was almost interested but not now. So much for that one. WTF Porsche what’s wrong with you.

Tesla Fan

what a joke

Bill Howland

I do see enough of the gas things around. Seems a natural to add a plug to it.

That ‘dual voltage’ charger-brick is a great idea. Aerovironment won’t be able to sell their latest gadget since its already included with the car here!

Let’s see how well it sells…

Alex

Outlander is better and half price…

The Outlander handles miserably, according to Consumer Reports. And it takes 11 seconds to get to 60 mph. It’s not in the same universe as the Porsche.

Alex

But best is waiting for Model X.

Stephen

Although efficiency doesn’t look impressive compared to the current EV and PHEVs on the market, when compared to other large premium SUVs it is the best out there until the Model X arrives. Hat tip to Porsche for making the first step towards electrification. Let’s hope it is successful to inspire Porsche to take the next step.

Priusmaniac

This makes 7143 $ per ev mile!
The Model S come at 302 $ per ev mile.

The Model S range is really just 200 miles, and the recharge can take hours. For long trips I’d much rather be in the Porsche!

LM

I just purchased one. It is an ideal vehicle for my personal lifestyle. Most of my driving is done in the city, and all of those journeys can be completed on 100% electric. When I’m on vacation, however, I enjoy taking long road trips. I’m not yet comfortable relying on an electric only vehicle for long trips, so I value also having the gas engine. No question this vehicle is an indulgence financially, and the electric range remains somewhat limited. However, I feel good that my every day driving is emissions free, and I’m pleased to support/encourage the ongoing development of low emission and alternatively powered vehicles. The bonus is that I am doing that while enjoying a beautifully crafted and wonderfully performing vehicle.

MM
I own one (had about 1100 miles on it so far). For me it was a replacement for my Range Rover Sport. I am averaging 32mpg so far (total over 1,100 miles). I didnt want an EV car like a leaf, I wanted a lux SUV that is sporty and gets better MPG then those available (regular Cayenne, X5, RRS, etc). For someone in the market for that type of vehicle and interested in the PHEV option…this is a great car. I always charge at home, which takes about 90 min. Porsche has a 7.2kw onboard charger option (not mentioned in the article above). So charges are fast and I charge at a few of my customer sites during meetings (free). Someone mentioned they would never drive it in EV mode… I always start in EV mode (default when you start the car), which is fine for normal driving (power is in line with normal day to day acceleration). If I want to go faster..I simply press on the peddle and the supercharged V6 kicks in with another 300+ HP to solve that problem. Most of my trips so are between 50-100 miles. On short trips (under 50) I am… Read more »