By on December 18, 2013

In early 2011, New York Consumer Protection law firm, Schlanger & Schlanger, LLP, together with national class action firm Roddy, Klein & Ryan of Boston, MA and Cotchett, Pitre & McCarthy, LLP filed a class action lawsuit against Porsche Cars North America, Inc. (“Porsche”), regarding defective coolant pipes in Porsche Cayenne model vehicles. The lawsuits allege, generally, that Porsche knowingly manufactured Cayenne models with plastic coolant tubes that degrade and fracture causing engine coolant to leak into the engine, leading to significant engine damage, and hid its knowledge of the defect from Cayenne owners. When the plastic coolant tubes fail, Cayenne owners are forced to purchase and install a costly “update kit” from Porsche which contains aluminum coolant pipes.

So says one of the many attorneys jumping onto this particular bandwagon. And now it looks like a settlement is imminent…

coolant

The settlement will provide for the replacement of the infamous plastic pipes with the Porsche upgrade aluminum pipes. Well, that’s a bit strong. It will put some money towards the replacement of those pipes, depending on the mileage on your Cayenne. The pipes themselves can be purchased for under six hundred bucks from online discounters, but the process to swap them is labor-intensive and expensive, often costing over three thousand dollars when performed at a Porsche dealer.

Reading the Cayenne owners’ forums, it appears that many owners just traded in their Cayennes when they found out about the problem. Cayennes without the pipe replacement traded in at approximately a $2000 discount. Of course, other owners had significant failures and repair costs when the pipes weren’t replaced in time.

As with the IMS settlement, Porsche has managed to wait out the owners and the attorneys until the horses are out of the barn — or the Cayennes are out of their original owners’ garages. The number of trucks that will qualify for anything more than a pittance is surely miniscule; you’d have to have bought the truck new and driven it 5,000 miles a year or less to get the full whack, which still wouldn’t cover the complete replacement.

Speaking as a multiple Porsche owner, it isn’t the mechanical failures that rankle. Any car can have problems and it’s impossible to completely engineer those problems out in the development phase — although the Corolla, as an example, seems to never suffer from these sorts of issues despite costing a fifth of the average V8 Cayenne’s transaction price. It’s the company’s steadfast refusal to acknowledge problems even when the bulk of the evidence on a given issue is plain for everyone to see.

Still, given the soft-shoe that the auto media typically dances around Porsche’s multiple reliability and quality issues, together with the typical Porker owner’s inexplicable loyalty, it’s no wonder that the company feels free to pull this stunt again and again. Why shouldn’t they? One Rennlister who had to pay out of his own pocket to replace the pipes years ago notes that, “I still bought two Cayennes after that one.”

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144 Comments on “Looks Like The Cayenne Is A Real Porsche After All...”


  • avatar
    CoastieLenn

    I used to think that Honda Accord and Toyota Camry owners were the biggest lemmings… I guess I’m wrong.

    This sheds new light on all of the gleaming reviews that Porsche products generally get from buff books.

    • 0 avatar
      CJinSD

      You thought people that bought the cars that work the best in the the real world year-in, year-out were lemmings and now you guess you’re wrong because legendary German engineering was really West German engineering?

      • 0 avatar
        DC Bruce

        +1 For the vast majority of people who buy cars because they need reliable, inexpensive transportation, it’s hard to see how buying a Toyota or a Honda qualifies one for a “lemming” snark.

        I would say the “lemmings” label better fits those who are buying a “label.” Some of those people buy Porsches. And arguably, anyone who is buying a Cayenne is definitely buying a label. It’s hard to argue that an SUV most likely used as a grocery-and-kid getter is an enthusiast vehicle.

        • 0 avatar
          mike978

          I think he was probably referring to people going just for the Camry when plenty of other more exciting choice are available with comparable real world reliability. Legacy, Accord, Altima and 6 are four examples.

          • 0 avatar
            Quentin

            Nothing says excitement like a midsize, FWD sedan made for families! It is like arguing which butter knife makes for a better scalpel.

          • 0 avatar
            DC Bruce

            Well, an Accord is a Honda and the others have inferior reliability records to the Toyota and Honda products.

      • 0 avatar
        CoastieLenn

        No, my statement was made (and has been echo’ed by MANY on this site) in the sense that CamCord buyers are “lemmings” for purchasing vehicles based solely off the ‘idea’ that it’ll “work the best in the the real world year-in, year-out” when its been proven to be just flawed as its competition, if not more-so when comparing some of the more techno-wizard drivetrains (ie: Honda V6 transmission failures… class action suit resulting in 120k mile extended warranty or even the Toyota 3.3L v6 sludge monsters resulting in the same) without even CONSIDERING the competition because the mentality of “it’s not a Toyota”.

        Sure, the “blinders” (if you will) exist within the purchasing sect of all major brands, but the sheer number of people willing to climb behind the wheel of a Camry or Accord simply because that’s all they know and that’s all they’re comfortable with is higher than some of the takers of the competitors that seem to be much more open minded of what else on the market might suit their needs better.

        I was one of those… until an Accord ruined me. I was able to see the light that escapes many CamCord purchasers… THERE ARE MANY OTHER OPTIONS THAT DO JUST AS WELL FOR THE SAME OR LESS MONEY.

        I’ve always maintained that Toyota and Honda are legacy brands, cashing in on a halo that their cars established in the 80′s that they normally don’t carry these days. Those times have gone away but many of the owners stay loyal and I can’t seem to see a better rationale as to “Why?” other than the reason I’ve stated above.

        I’m also VERY much aware that I’m an overly opinionated (albiet polite) asshat at times, but that’s what make sites like this tick, right?

        • 0 avatar
          raph

          I got the jist of your original comment. The first thing that popped into my mind was a Toyota owner who had a head gasket failure and thought the problem was something they had done. It never entered their mind that it might have been a faulty part from the get-go.

        • 0 avatar
          Quentin

          Because no one ever buys any other car without cross-shopping? My dad owned F series after F series without ever test driving anything else. My mom went Escort, Bronco II, Explorer, Explorer, AT eating Yukon, Explorer over the first 25 years of my life. Yup, only CamCord buyers are lemmings. Dad only broke the F series line because he was tired of how big they’d grown and all of his coon hunting buddies are driving Tacomas.

          • 0 avatar
            CoastieLenn

            You have a valid point… but I also put a cabviat in my statement about those such people existing in each brand’s clientelle.

            CamCord buyers just do it a lot more often.

        • 0 avatar
          Brian E

          What you fail to understand is just how much some people hate making decisions. They don’t care about optimizing for the best possible product; they just want to pick an acceptable option. Picking a Camry or Accord eliminates a lot of thought from the process and leaves only the choice of shade of beige.

          FWIW, I approach shoes pretty much this way: I found out quite a while ago that the New Balance 99x series was comfortable and available in my size. I don’t bother to cross shop shoes every time I need some – I just order a couple of new pairs every year. Why bother making it more complicated than it needs to be if I just need something that’s comfortable and won’t fall apart on me?

        • 0 avatar
          Synchromesh

          Why bother with different options if CamCord works for someone? My uncle is on his 3rd Accord in a row. He is one of those people who thinks of a vehicle as an A-to-B conveyance and nothing else. When I bought my WRX and told him about the expensive maintenance, the awesome performance, the cornering, etc – he just looked at me like I was crazy. Similar look was on his face when I bought an old Miata a few years back. He thinks these are toys pure and simple. And in some ways they are.

          I only know one guy who had an Accord and had major issues with it. That’s pretty impressive considering how many people I know that own or owned an Accord. As for Porsche – shame on them. But they’re just one more proof that mostly posers buy these and that engineering is sub par despite the high price. You won’t catch me dead in one of these rolling pos.

        • 0 avatar
          Power6

          You might try reading about the psychology of decision making. I recommend “The Paradox of Choice” if you have the time. A couple basic ideas that might enlighten you who feel he is more enlightened than those dirty “lemmings” you put down. They might actually be smarter than you, but then you might not be sharp enough to know that ;-)

          - humans are concerned with *not making the wrong choice* rather than making the *ultimate best* choice so that drives decision making behavior

          - The most satisfied consumers are those who evaluate only a few appropriate choices, and make a fairly quick decision. Those who examine every single possibility and agonize over all the details and then make a very well educated purchase…are not as satisfied in general.

    • 0 avatar
      jeano

      So everyone should be driving Corollas, because they might avoid a $2500 bill sometime in the next 7 years?
      Yeah , sounds like a real enthusiast website.
      And, why are the brakes for my M3 more expensive than for my wife’s Golf? Germans must think we’re all stupid.

    • 0 avatar
      340-4

      I’ve always wanted to read an article talking to the third owners of German cars such as BMW and Porsche, once they’re out of warranty and the terror begins.

      Where do these cars go? I see plenty of collapsing BMW’s that seem to go downhill fast. VW’s dissolve away or self-immolate within a decade.

      Would be a fun research project.

      • 0 avatar
        tjh8402

        @ 340-4: I’m the (absolutely smitten) 4th owner of a 2004 BMW 330i. What would you like to know?

        • 0 avatar
          krhodes1

          And I have owned out of warranty well-aged cars from BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Saab, Volvo, Peugeot, and VW. I’d be happy to chime in too.

        • 0 avatar
          Synchromesh

          Actually, I have a question for the BMW owner. Why does BMW charge a ridiculous price for their overweight, overpowered, overgizmo’d pieces of junk when one can buy much better cars for less money? I was always curious.

          As for being smitten – please. Your average WRX will wipe the floor with a 328i for a lot less money. It might not have extra gizmos but it’s about 2x the car for the money.

          • 0 avatar
            spyked

            You aren’t curious. You hate Germans/anything German due to your admitted prejudices. It’s a known fact on the interwebs and at Miata.net. You think everyone should be driving around in late 90s Integras or Subarus (HA! Subarus – the only Japanese car with German car maintenance requirements).

            Not everyone buys on price. Why settle for a WRX when you could have an S4, for example?

        • 0 avatar
          Kevin Jaeger

          I’ll play, too. I have an ’84 Mercedes diesel, 1990 BMW 325 and 2001 Mercedes C240, all driven daily and together have about 800K on them.

          What would you like to know, other than them being durable cars that last for decades on original engines and transmissions?

        • 0 avatar
          340-4

          Hey, some responses!

          How are the cars to own and maintain?

          All third hand stories aside, I realize they can be much more of a commitment to own long term; does the driving enjoyment offset any issues?

          • 0 avatar
            tjh8402

            @340-4:

            the maintenance is worse than a domestic in terms of cost or a Japanese car in terms of frequency, but I haven’t found it onerous or worse than I expected (my dad has an e36 BMW and I’ve been a longtime reader of this site and BMW forums so I was prepared). I’ve had my car just over 2 years and have put 30k miles on it (99k-129k).

            You have to be smart about things, and as many have said, find an independent shop. IMy a/c compressor went out (a Denso part btw). The replacement part from BMW would’ve been almost $1k. I found the part from Denso online for $300. The total for the repair was $1,000 with labor (at the indie shop), which was the same to have the same place do it to my previous car, an Infiniti I30 (which required at least 2 a/c compressors over it’s lifetime). I also got involved in a local BMW club, which has been extremely helpful.

            I have had a lot of the typical failures – the water pump, the thermostat, the DISA valve, the clutch safety switch, and 2 power window regulators, but none of these has been catastrophically expensive (nothing more than $250 and some of that has been DIY) and the total for all those repairs is probably around $1k (and in some cases like the water pump and DISA valve, there are aftermarket solutions that will work better than BMW’s parts). I also had the clutch replaced, which would’ve been about $1200*, but from what I understand, that’s inline with most other cars (I think my sister’s Miata was about the same). It’s definitely been less than the payments I’d be making on the new Focuses or Mazda 3′s I was also shopping.

            As far as driving enjoyment offsetting any issues, I can say it does with a resounding yes. This is the reason I’m still smitten with this car. I absolutely love driving it. I have a pretty stressful full time job that I am at for 24 hours at a time, and it’s truly therapeutic and relaxing to be driving this car right before going into work, and to help decompress right after getting off duty.

            I’m no badge whore. If you could find a Chevy or a Daewoo or a Suzuki that delivered the sublime ride and precise handling, the wonderful engine (the only two six cylinders that can probably match a straight six like this for sound, power, and smoothness are a Porsche flat six or NSX V-6), the solid feeling, the build quality, and the practicality of a 4 door body, I would’ve been happy to buy it. I test drove a lot of cars when I was shopping….everything from Honda Accords to Acura Integra GS-Rs and TSXs to Mustang GTs, Mazda 3′s, and Ford Focuses, and nothing drove as good as this BMW (including newer BMWs. one of the reasons I got the e46 is I thought it drove better than the E90s).

            The one car that came close was the Infiniti G35. That is a great car and I would never question someone who made the decision to buy one. It makes a very compelling case for itself. What favored the BMW was that when test driving, I noticed a big variety in the feel of the G35′s. Some felt tight and solid, some felt like they’d had the snot driven out of them. All the BMW’s felt tight and solid. My plan is to keep this car for a long time, and an important part of that was having a car that aged well and still felt tight and new so it would be a car I still wanted to keep driving, instead of one that was falling apart and that I couldn’t wait to get rid of. I didn’t have that level of confidence in the Infiniti’s ability to hold together, even if mechanically it would’ve been more reliable and cheaper to maintain. Had I decided to go with a newer car, the G37s felt much better built, and that would have been a more difficult choice to make.

            *in the interest of full disclosure, I should say I also had to replace the engine, but that was entirely my fault. I had an unfortunate shifting incident (1st instead of 3rd gear) on track at Sebring which caused the engine to throw a rod. Had the clutch replaced and a few other things done while the engine was out. total for that was $5k ($2200 for a used engine from a wrecked car, with the rest labor and other misc expenses at the indie shop).

      • 0 avatar
        racer-esq.

        I have never owned a “Corolla” car. My cars have all been RWD and manual transmission.

        The BMW was BY FAR the worst. Absolute garbage. The transmission. The engine mounts. The front lower ball joints. The rear lower control arms. The airbag sensors. Everything about the car was poorly built.

        My eight other cars, Japanese and now on my first American car, have been much better in terms of build quality and fit and finish for the Japanese, and driven as well or better.

        The apologists suffer from Stockholm Syndrome.

        • 0 avatar
          pragmatic

          Life is too short to own a corolla type car. I’ve also only owed RWD MT cars. I’ve shopped the Germans but they don’t depreciate enough until the car so worn its not worth buying. Of course it is getting hard to find any used RWD MT cars that are not German or Coupes.

      • 0 avatar
        BMWnut

        I have an E36 and an E39. Both were bought used. Both have somewhere north of 150 000 miles on them. Both are POS of note. Both have had multiple extremely expensive repair jobs done to them. Alternator, water pump, radiator, power steering, air conditioning. electric windows, fuel pump, cylinder head, cold starting – you name it has failed at least once. In the case of cooling system components, more than once. It is a downward spiral. Every time you think you are good to go but the sheer driving pleasure rarely last more than a few months. I am now totally fed up with both of them. I am going to have to ditch at least one of them and go into debt to buy something that will not bankrupt me. An ’07-ish Lexus RX is starting to look real good.

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          After reading so many of these type of articles I’m starting to understand the attraction to at least some Lexus models.

          • 0 avatar
            hgrunt

            No car is perfect. My parents bought a used ’91 LS400 a few years ago. Shortly after we bought it the power steering pump failed, the water pump eventually went too. The climate control LCD was blacked out so you never really knew what temperature you’d set it to. The shock absorbers were so dead you could scrape the tire on the fender cornering too hard. Front ball joints were completely gone. Eventually the AC system failed and the leaking rebuilt power steering pump killed the alternator. Not to mention a bunch of trim pieces were coming off, and my E46 actually has more rear legroom. If you used a Fram oil filter, it would trigger the low oil level warning light, etc. As vaunted as Lexuses are for being nice and reliable, they’re not always as bulletproof as people would like you to think.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Good points hgrunt, but few things are ever certain (outside of decently kept RWD Volvos of course :) ). With regard to your parent’s purchase I’ve owned enough used cars at the point to know what I’m getting into with a 15yo+ ride. Trim bits and interior screens might be unexpected failures in such a well made car, but I would full expect to change a water pump/serp/pulley, possibly shocks and other undercarriage bits and seals inc rear main at that age/miles. I’ve found things like A/C, power steering, master cylinder, fuel pumps etc are hit and miss. My Pontiac needed a whole new PS rack at 70K but my Saturn’s PS has never been touched at 166K (its almost 100% factory outside of various hoses/seals, plugs, radiator, two sensors, and the water pump). AFAIK my Volvo’s PS rack and pump are still factory too but its had a number of relays and sensors replaced under my ownership and both fuel pumps replaced by the previous owner.

          • 0 avatar
            Power6

            NEWSFLASH, old Lexus with tons of deferred maintenance needs maintenance…

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Film at 11.

    • 0 avatar
      05lgt

      as long as resale value counts towards cost of ownership, it’s not always lemming behaviour. It can be a reasoned decision. I just CAN’T take that much pablum in my own daily diet.

    • 0 avatar
      imag

      As Farago himself used to attest, Ferraris are far worse.

      I had a long conversation with a Ferrari dealership mechanic at a BBQ. He said one of the reasons Ferrari likes to sell to existing owners is that they know about the service costs and time.

      He said the first-time owners consistently cry out, “it’s only got 12,000 miles – what do you mean it needs a new $15K transmission?” Those super-fast shifts don’t come cheap, apparently. This mechanic said he would need to have over $100M before he would consider owning a Ferrari, as otherwise the costs would be just too painful. He also said most Ferrari owners drive Porsches as backup cars.

      But you never read about any of that in the buff books. The reason is that they are designed around fantasy. Readers don’t want reality to intrude on their dreams.

      • 0 avatar
        DeadWeight

        $10,000 regularly scheduled dealership maintenance at 15,000 mile intervals on cars like the F430 is the price of Ferrari ownership.

        • 0 avatar
          hgrunt

          The same applies to Lambos. Gallardos need clutches (4-6k) around 15k miles. And while it’s out, you might as well take care of a few other things…

        • 0 avatar

          My father had a friend who worked for Rolls Royce in the 60′s and 70′s he said that they figured 10-15% of the purchase price of the rolls would be required for yearly maintenance. So buy a 100k car pay 10k a year for regular maintenance

          • 0 avatar
            Mark_MB750M

            Do you know why.? I could see high maintenance costs for a Porsche or Ferrari since a high performance car is probably going to stress its components more, but Rolls (Rollses?) seem like they would not only lead a more sedate life, but also be overbuilt. maybe the hydraulic suspension on the Silver Shadows was hi-maintenance?

            Very curious, as older Rolls show up at reasonable prices and are therefore tempting…just add Grey Poupon.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            I’ve heard RR’s after the mid 70s are problematic but I can’t confirm it.

          • 0 avatar
            jz78817

            “Do you know why.?”

            because the owners would pay it.

    • 0 avatar
      APaGttH

      Lemming would be the ’96 Grand Am buyer who upgraded to an ’01 supercharged Grand Prix and then an ’04 left over Bonneville.

      Spawning salmon would be your average Camcord buyer. They just return to the same stream without looking at other options. As recently as five years ago that wasn’t necessarily a bad thing – it still isn’t per say, but in the C and D segments in particular there really isn’t a big ball of suck in the mainstream and near luxury offerings.

      The only “lemming” walking into a Toyota/Honda dealer today is one that is buying a Yaris without cross shopping. It is just so woefully behind everything else in the B segment (and apparently TTAC thinks the new Fit is butt ugly)

      The new Corolla is from what I’ve seen a step up from the previous gen – certainly in the looks department. The new Camry is also a big step up from the ’08-’11 model which I view as a low point (which isn’t all that low).

      The Accord – sure no more double wishbones and a bit bloated – but hey, at least as I understand it you can still buy a two door and you can still row your own. That’s something!

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        I’m not seeing the lemming argument there. I had a boss in 07 with an MY93 3.1 G/A running with 234K otc (second auto transmission). I routinely see the two final generations of GPs running around along with the occasional last gen Bonneville. My lemming argument might be first year Neon auto to MY99 LH Intrepid 2.7 who gives up and buys a CPO MY01 Accord V6 after the 2.7 blows up.

  • avatar
    bachewy

    Another reason I won’t own a Porsche.

  • avatar
    jmo

    Is it that they don’t want to admit to a mistake? Or, is it they don’t think any mistakes were made.

    Do they feel that if you buy a $75,000 car and it needs a $2,500 repair in 7 years and 75,000 miles, that’s reasonable?

    I assume if Accord owners start showing up needing $500 power steering motor replacements at 60k miles Honda is going to step up and make it right. But, if people complain that they need a new alternator at 150k miles, I think Honda would that the alternator lasted a reasonable amount of time.

    Is it just that Porsche has a different idea of reasonable?

    • 0 avatar
      korvetkeith

      Germans don’t admit wrong doing or making mistakes.

      • 0 avatar
        slow kills

        Bingo, this is endemic to them.

        Also “inexplicable loyalty” indeed.

      • 0 avatar
        kvndoom

        Let’s be fair. Japanese don’t either. Honda redoing the 2013 Civic totally blew my mind. Had Mazda acted that quickly on the RX8, they might have saved millions on replacing engines and the rotary may have lived on.

        Somehow the Germans can get away with wearing the Scarlet “R” but for the Japanese it can be devastating.

      • 0 avatar
        Swedish

        BINGO! Remember Mercedes arrogant response to the C-Class falling apart during IIHS Small Overlap Crash testing? Then Mercedes quietly went back and made structural changes to the 2014 M Class to get it to pass.

      • 0 avatar
        ellomdian

        Porsche is particularly bad at it. VW/Audi, Mercedes, and BMW all have a history of not actively defecating on their customer base like Porsche does, largely because their products have been interchangeable for the last 2 decades. Porsche has had a unique product.

        This isn’t a bearing failure on a small-volume mid-engined sports car – this is a significant failure on their SUV, which happens to have a decent competitor in every marque from BMW to Jeep.

      • 0 avatar
        golden2husky

        …..Germans don’t admit wrong doing or making mistakes…..

        No, this disgusting business mindset is most certainly NOT limited to German snot brands. How many 10′s of millions of GM engines needed a intake gasket because of DexDeath? I could understand GM as the engines proved to be durable until they switched to that crap coolant – except that GM did not step up and make good on a design/material choice that they made in error. And that is what it is all about. If you make a mistake, admit it and then foot the bill. Very few people will be upset if you repair it and maybe throw in a loaner while the repairs are being done. That good word of mouth is priceless and it spreads quickly. This was lost on GM for a few decades and it bit them big time. Somehow the snot brands get away with things that would be front page news for Ford. And the brand sheep fall for it.

        • 0 avatar
          DeadWeight

          I’m convinced Dexcool & their clones aren’t a problem at all (unless a non universal Dexcool is mixed with a conventional coolant).

          Dexcool got a bad rap.It was the horribly flawed design of the LIM on certain GM engines (along with poorly designed reservoir tanks (that allowed too much air to be ingested) that was the problem.

          I’ll go one step further; Dexcool and what are now almost across the board OEM long life coolants (all essentially OAT or HOAT Dexcool clones) are superior to conventional “green”/old school silicate coolant in every way.

          • 0 avatar
            wibblywobbly

            Nailed it on Dexcool. Flawed design (let’s save money by using fewer bolts) plus a lousy assembly process that over-torqued the bolts and damaged the LIM gasket from the get go is what caused the problem in many cases.

          • 0 avatar
            DeadWeight

            Further evidence that we are closer to correct (i.e. Dexcool is not problematic whatsoever) is the fact that almost all manufacturers, including Ford, Chrysler, etc. have now essentially moved to Dexcool style complaints (OATS or HOATS) whereby the only possible differences are what precise organic acid cocktail they utilize.

            Silicate “fallout” is, in general, a bad thing in terms of clogging water pumps and leading to other failed coolant system component failure, especially since silicate fallout happens approximately 24 to 36 months after the silicate based coolants are in use.

            I’ve experienced the cleanest radiator, water pump and coolant system conditions ever, even after 4 or 5 year intervals between flush & fills, with OAT & HOAT coolants, and am completely convinced their superior to silicate based coolants in almost all applications.

    • 0 avatar
      duffman13

      The difference is that the $2500-$3000 *repair* is on a part that shouldn’t reasonably fail in the first place, and grenades the motor if it happens. The only coolant routing you really hear about failing is 150k+ old hoses that have dry-rotted.

      Scheduled preventative maintenance (with catastrophic results for skipping it) a la a late 90s Audi or VW timing belt or an E36/46 water pump is expected and built into the maintenance schedule ahead of time. The failure of the coolant passages or the implosion of a main bearing in a motor causing the overheating or simply grenading is not comparable to a power steering pump in any way shape or form.

    • 0 avatar
      danio3834

      There are plenty of other examples of OEMs reimbursing for unreasonable failures on cheaper cars. The Ford 4.6L plastic intake manifold comes to mind as well as intake manifold gaskets on GM 60* V6s. They similarly put off repairing the issues like Porsche did, although Ford paid full pop IIRC.

      The point is Porsche doesn’t get a free pass because owners of expensive cars should be OK with expensive repairs due to defects.

    • 0 avatar
      DeadWeight

      I’ll join the chorus and agree with the consensus view that, IMO, there’s something about German culture whereby upper level management either 1) never wants to be bothered having to hear about systemic component problems (so the lower level management is afraid to broach such topics until they hit the mass epidemic/crisis stage) and/or 2) reflexively assumes that even when a relatively high % of the same components are failing prematurely, it must be end user error, abuse or lack of maintenance (even on non-maintenance components).

      I’m not sure if this is exclusively a “German thing,” as I witnessed Toyota’s upper management deny for YEARS in the face of incontrovertible evidence (much of it attested to by their dealers) that certain 4 and 6 cylinder Toyota motors were highly susceptible to oil sludging even when properly maintained, but it does seem to be more common amongst zeee Germans in my experience (with two BMWs and one VW).

  • avatar
    carrya1911

    In other words, this functions like most other abusive relationships.

  • avatar
    FreedMike

    I love the smell of German arrogance in the morning. At least it doesn’t involve invading other countries anymore.

  • avatar
    kurtamaxxguy

    Given Porsche’s introducing the Macan, described by many journalists as a “mass market Porsche”, it’ll be interesting to see how their apparent arrogance plays out with that market, and how many first year Macan problems surface.

  • avatar
    NeinNeinNein

    De Germans make some of the best cars in the world save for utter reliability. Some parts designs are poor and will fail–thats engineering. It happens to all car companies. Now beause German cars are complex and the exchange rate is not in our favor, repairs can be expensive. The owners of these cars know that. That being said, Porsche cars rank very high in the reliability stats–so owners make decisions based on those two conflicting factors.
    What is garbage here is the failure of the automotive media to publish the stories of expensive failures if indeed they’ve failed to do so. They also need to hold Porsche’s feet to the fire on behalf of their readership in regards to how these parts failures were handled. If Porsche just waits out the folks—then thats just BS and they ought to be called on it. Shame on the claimants and their lawyers for taking what appears to be a garbage settlement.
    Anyone who has had their platic pipes fail ought to be reimbursed for the job up to a given mileage. I’m thinking say 120-150K would be a reasonabel time period in which to expect an OEM cooling system to function until.
    I’m frankly surprised that all these wealthy people are taking it on the chin with these huge cost failures–usually these folks dont just sit back and get screwed. The guy who bought several of these same cars, well, I’d hope he was the exception.
    A partial solution to some of these issues is being able to turn a wrench. Replacement of this part wasnt an issue that a decent home mechanic couldnt replace. Time and tools needed, yes, but do able.
    If you have some fairly decent skills German ownership can be just as inexpensive and reliable as most other cars!

    • 0 avatar
      arun

      “Shame on the claimants and their lawyers for taking what appears to be a garbage settlement.”

      What makes you think the lawyers got a garbage settlement?! In a class action lawsuit moreso than others, the lawyers always win handsomely!

  • avatar
    Car Ramrod

    Does anyone know if this malady applies to the 4.8L found in the early ’08 models as well? Most of what I find on the net seems to refer to the 4.5L “pre-refresh” cars. A relative of mine just HAD to have one of these….groan.

    • 0 avatar
      TTACFanatic

      Anyone know if the 4.5 V8 in the first gen. Cayenne is related to the 4.2 V8 in the Touareg of similar vintage?

      If they are, it would be really interesting to see what kind of coolant pipes the mass market variant has?

  • avatar
    racer-esq.

    Supposedly “real” Porsches do not require coolant pipes.

    It is a sad day when the “reliable” (in a relative sense) Porsches are the ones with VW engines.

    On second thought, that has probably always been the case.

  • avatar
    Swedish

    You can count on the Germans to make some very stupid decisions from time to time especially anything engineered under VAG.

    • 0 avatar
      JimC2

      Let’s be fair, Volvo is not without sin when it comes to stupid engineering decisions:

      Big stuff that should be straightforward to engineer:
      -Front suspension ball joins on first S80s
      -Needlessly complicated hydraulic timing belt tensioner on original “white block” engines (4/5/6 cyl) compared to simple spring on “red blocks” and simple spring on later “white blocks.”

      Detail stuff:
      -Moving the rear door lock stubs from the front of those doors on the 850 (within reach of the front seat) to the rear of those doors on the S70 (out of reach of the front seat). Not so great when $300 power lock actuator breaks.
      -All power antennas on all Volvos

      • 0 avatar
        tjh8402

        @JimC2 – I know its anecdotal, but my best friend has an 08 S80 that he purchased a few years ago CPO. By the the time the CPO warranty is up first quarter next year, he’ll have had over $20k in warranty work done to the car. His previous car, a 99 S70, was bought from an independent Volvo shop that stupidly offered him a 6 month warranty on it. He paid $7k for that car and managed to find $7k worth or repairs to have done to it while under the warranty. He plans to put a V60R on order as soon as Volvo lets him.

  • avatar
    DC Bruce

    I’m puzzled by the Germans’ continuing reliance on composite (“plastic”) parts for cooling systems. Can they cost that much less than metal parts?

    BMW M54 and M52 engines (found in early 2000′s cars) are well known for their catastrophic failure of the plastic parts in the cooling system: water pump impeller, expansion tank, radiator tank. Unlike a hose failure, some of these failures can happen very fast and damage your engine even if you shut down the second you know there is a problem.

    So, Porsche tries the same foolishness in their expensive SUV . . . and they claim to be surprised when they have the same failures?

    Thermal cycling (which is what you have with cooling system parts) is apparently really tough on anything that isn’t metal. There is a cooling pipe on the M52 and M54 engine; thankfully it’s made of metal, not plastic.

    • 0 avatar
      jz78817

      “I’m puzzled by the Germans’ continuing reliance on composite (“plastic”) parts for cooling systems. Can they cost that much less than metal parts?”

      there’s nothing wrong with plastic/composite parts in these roles; nearly everyone uses them. Failures like this mean one or more of a few possible things:

      1) an inappropriate material was selected for the part, and fails due to chemical and/or thermal degradation.
      2) insufficient validation testing to catch #1
      3) long-term parts quality problems
      4) the part design was not mechanically robust enough for the application
      5) cost-reduction without sufficient validation testing to ensure the part can still do the job.

    • 0 avatar
      mike1dog

      Ask Ford Crown Victoria owners of a certain year model about their plastic intake manifolds. The plastic crossover tube where the thermostat went broke. A lot. Ford changed it to an aluminum tube. They also extended the warranty, though, unlike Porsche did in this case.

      • 0 avatar
        danio3834

        It wasn’t just Crown Vics, it was all Panthers, Mustang and MN12 cars too. I witnessed a Mustang that hydrolocked and junked the motor because of it. Ford did put off fixing them, but they paid for the repairs in full unlike what Porche is doing.

    • 0 avatar
      mmahon04

      All 986/996 series Porsche’s (987/997′s as well?) use plastic impeller for their water pumps as well. There’s some anecdotal evidence of cylinder wall failure from localized overheating due to clogged coolant passages from impeller fracturing.

  • avatar
    el scotto

    A. Dude what up with the Focus? B. It’s a loaner, the Porsche is in the shop. A. What!? The Porsch-A is in the shop AGAIN? B. Oh Shut Up. A. Loling back to his cubicle. Sadly Porsch-A owners (B) will put up with stuff like this and can usually be overheard at after hours social functions speaking about “the sublime abilities of the car” and expounding on wine. As dad once advised me: “some folks won’t buy something because it’s not expensive enough.”

    • 0 avatar
      jz78817

      honestly, I have no issue with someone liking their car enough where they’ll forgive its flaws. As much as I squawk about quality problems which seem inherent to e.g. BMW, I fully understand that most of them have a number of other redeeming qualities.

      I just wish some of the owners would simply be honest about it.

  • avatar
    cargogh

    Some of these owners remind me of a rich guy with whose wife I had a lengthy affair.
    Long before I came along, he never appreciated her.
    The only joy she ever gave him was the ability to discuss how expensive and occasionally unreliable she was.

  • avatar
    Kyree S. Williams

    Well, that’s a characteristically Porsche-like move, indeed.

    But while we’re on the subject, the Cayenne is actually an excellent vehicle. It’s got great styling, is quite capable, handles nicely, encompasses everything from a V6-powered family SUV to a fire-breathing hot-rod on stilts…and is STLL available with a manual transmission. If the Cayenne were from any other brand, you’d be heaping praise upon it. It would have been so easy for Porsche to just slap its insignia on something ordinary, but instead the company took the time to make the Porsche of SUVs. The Cayenne is validated in spite of its badge, not because of it.

    Of course, none of that says anything about longevity…

    • 0 avatar
      LeeK

      Thank you Kyree, for pointing out the positive aspects of the Cayene. I am increasingly disappointed at the responses from the B&B to any article regarding cars of enthusiast appeal. Or anything from Germany. Snark, socioeconomic resentment and condescension, and “you have to be some kind of poseur/jerk/idiot/lemming to own one of these” seems to be the guaranteed response when articles like this are put up for comment.

      The issue here is whether Porsche knowingly built these SUVs with inferior components that they knew would break within a reasonable service life. If so. then they should reimburse their owners for the repairs. The class action lawsuit is one of thousands that auto manufacturers are juggling each year. In most cases they end up settling the ones they know might lead to even more disastrous results if the case goes to trial. I am very close to a product liability attorney and you wouldn’t believe the outrageous stuff they have to deal with from every ambulance-chasing law firm around the world.

      I will never have enough money to own a Cayenne. But as an enthusiast, I can appreciate that Porsche made it one of the best driving SUVs ever made. I don’t chastise them for producing such a vehicle, it has been a profitable product for them and if I had to own and drive an SUV (which I don’t), then I’m glad that it is a choice for those fortunate to afford one.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        I’m not sure how things are viewed in Wolfsburg, but IMO Porsche is the most premier “mainstream” brand in the VAG family and even if its platforms are recycled from other divisions its products should be overbuilt and stand the test of time. I’m not an expert on the subject but it sounds like this isn’t the case, especially in the case of the Cayenne. If Porsche were still a fledgling automaker cutting corners might be a little more acceptable as the enthusiast will forgive for the sake of “heritage”, but the fact is the brand is now fully owned by one of the largest auto conglomerates in history and there is no excuse to not get it right. For the amount of money being asked for its products, using the absolute best materials should be a given from the outset not an afterthought, reimbursement, or recall. Failing to do so simply highlights arrogance and an attitude of bean-counting on what is otherwise a very expensive product.

        “driving SUVs”

        There’s an oxymoron, SUVs were never made to be “driver’s cars”.

    • 0 avatar

      Great styling???!

      I had a girlfriend who sometimes had trouble getting to sleep. When that happened, I’d recite “the ugly car alphabet”. The Cayenne was C in the ugly car alphabet.

  • avatar
    grzydj

    I love reading stories about Porsche owners who can’t afford to fix their cars, or bellyache about when they have to. It wouldn’t be a Porsche if it wasn’t exclusive an expensive to buy and maintain now would it?

    • 0 avatar
      tonycd

      “It wouldn’t be a Porsche if it wasn’t exclusive an expensive to buy and maintain now would it?”

      So, they deserve more latitude to build it like trash because they overcharge for it?

  • avatar
    Lightspeed

    Lexus refuses to acknowledge the poor lower ball-joint service life issue on 2nd gen GS models. A rather critical part of the suspension.

  • avatar
    Bocatrip

    When I was considering a 2014 Cayman, after all the issues I read from the Porsche forums, I finally decided to abandon the project with so many problems on their forums. If anyone has time or is interested, go to their most popular forums and read what seems to be endless issues with the PDK,paint,electrical gremlins, etc. I wasn’t going to lay out over $70,000 knowing this beforehand. And yes, many of the initial problems that were evident during introduction have not been addressed by Porsche.

  • avatar
    krhodes1

    I find it hilarious that some on here equate cost of the car to its reliability. That has NEVER been true, and never will be. Cheap, simple cars will always be more reliable than complex, expensive cars. You won’t have all sorts of expensive failures on a Corolla, simply because it doesn’t have those things to fail. Expensive cars are usually built with bleeding edge tech, which is both more likely to fail AND more expensive when it does. I have a very hard time working up much sympathy for needing a $3K repair on a $90K car. That is no different than a $1K repair on a $30K car, or a $500 repair on a $15K car. If you want the absolute lowest cost of ownership, buy a poverty spec Corolla. Otherwise, “you gotta pay to play”.

    I will say that Porsche and the rest of the Germans certainly DO drag their feet about acknowledging ongoing issues. But the Japanese do it too, and so do the Americans, and the Koreans, and the British, and the French, and the Italians… ALL car companies have no particular interest in paying to fix issues that they can get their customers to fix. Luckily we do have ways to hold their feet to the fire.

    • 0 avatar
      LeeK

      Yes. I remember when Honda accused Americans of being slobs and eating in their cars needlessly, which caused the seat belt buckle receptacle to become clogged with crumbs and then failing to properly latch. The Japanese manufacturerers are no different from German, Korean, or American manufacturers in regards to being reluctant to pay out of warranty costs, particularly when they don’t believe they are at fault.

    • 0 avatar
      jz78817

      “Cheap, simple cars will always be more reliable than complex, expensive cars. You won’t have all sorts of expensive failures on a Corolla, simply because it doesn’t have those things to fail. ”

      Uh, last I checked, Corollas still have cooling systems.

      we’re not talking about some novel, exotic new tech which nobody has done before. We’re talking about coolant hoses and water pumps which crumble.

      The crap which is notorious for breaking on these kinds of cars are things which every car has. Certain BMWs eat cam sensors. Every car on the market has cam sensors. Some VW/Audi engines munch ignition coils. All cars have ignition coils.

      • 0 avatar
        krhodes1

        But a Corolla does not have engine cooling pipes that run through the engine such that a leaking one can cause coolant to enter the engine. I don’t know WHY the Cayenne engine is setup this way, but it is probably for packaging reasons to get a HUGE engine into a not that huge engine bay, or to get coolant to the turbos or something. I am sure they had very valid engineering reasons for a more complex design. Car companies don’t do things the hard way just because…

        As to cam sensors and coils, well, that is a component quality issue, not a design issue per se. I have no experience of BMW cam sensor issues, they were a 150K mile item on the BMWs I have owned, which seems like a reasonable life to me, and they cost $75. VW flat out had a major quality issue with coils. The biggest problem being that their supplier simply did not have the production capacity to produce enough of them in a timely manner even once the recall on them happened. So VW would only replace them one at a time, which had to be very frustrating as each of them failed in turn. And 15 years ago, coil-on-plug ignition WAS relatively new technology. The updated version post recall seems to be just fine. Same with the notorious falling windows – they came out with an updated metal clip to replace the plastic one, problem solved. Same with DI cassettes on Saabs – they were pretty bleeding edge in the beginning, and they tended to not have as long a life as one might want, and with the original software, you got NO warning before you were stranded on the side of the road. But Saab updated both the hardware and the software, and these days they are probably 150K items for most cars. Which is why cars get more reliable all the time. But mistakes still happen.

        • 0 avatar
          jz78817

          “But a Corolla does not have engine cooling pipes that run through the engine such that a leaking one can cause coolant to enter the engine. I don’t know WHY the Cayenne engine is setup this way, but it is probably for packaging reasons to get a HUGE engine into a not that huge engine bay, or to get coolant to the turbos or something. I am sure they had very valid engineering reasons for a more complex design.”

          or, they just screwed up and you’re desperate to make excuses on their behalf.

          • 0 avatar
            krhodes1

            Nope, I have no dog in this fight, I would never buy a Cayenne – by comparison my BMW might as well be a Corolla, and it is about the most complex car I would ever buy.

            I agree they screwed up, and I agree they probably SHOULD stand behind the cars in an ideal world. But we don’t live in an ideal world, so they had to be dragged kicking and screaming. Which I am of two minds about. You know what the warranty is when you buy the car. If you don’t want to take the risk of paying for repairs, don’t keep it past the warranty or buy an extended warranty. Once that warranty is up, all bets are off. Heck, they cover the thing for 50K I presume, warranties used to be *12K* not that long ago. Anything covered past the warranty is goodwill on the part of the manufacturer, be it Porsche or Toyota. Unless it is a safety issue, and bad coolant pipes don’t seem to rise to the level of a government recall. But a bunch of owners got some lawyers sufficiently interested to take the case. And how many of those owners WERE the lawyers…?

  • avatar
    bud777

    I don’t understand all this hating on Porsches. The original VW beetle was a pretty reliable car wasn’t it? And when you get down to it, a Porsche is just a VW beetle with better trim, right? So, I mean, lighten up, it’s not like they are trying to be a real car.

    • 0 avatar
      LeeK

      Actually, the original Beetle wasn’t particularly reliable at all. But it was relatively easy to fix by a DIYer with a Haynes manual and parts were cheap. I had several friends who drove them in high school and they were always breaking down for one reason or another.

  • avatar
    izzy

    OK, you have a point regarding cost of repair being proportional to cost of the car.

    But engineering in a part that potentially could break and dump coolant inside the engine is just plain dumb. Porsche can do better than that if its customers demand it. But since Porsche owners are willing put up with it, I guess, more power to them.

    Give credit where credit is due, how about leading edge reliability engineered into Toyota cars? You don’t have to be an engineer to appreciate that. This anything German must be better than anything Japanese is total BS.

    • 0 avatar
      krhodes1

      I would NEVER say that a German car is “better” than a Japanese car. I will say that German cars are generally MUCH better to “drive” than a Japanese car. They simply have different priorities. If your highest priority is reliability at the expense of all else, buy a Camry or a Corolla (though I think those days are long past, personally). I am willing to put up with higher maintenance requirements for higher performance and a better drive. E9X BMWs have been around long enough that I have a pretty good idea what I am in for over the long haul, and none of it scares me in the slightest. To be specific:

      My car will certainly need a waterpump and thermostat around 100K +/- 20K. I live in the cold north, so probably +20K.

      I will probably need a valve cover gasket at 60-70K, along with an oil filter cartridge housing.

      Front suspension bushings at 75K or so.

      Vanos seals at around 100K.

      Cooling system parts do not seem to be an issue other than the electric pump and thermostat, but a radiator and hoses at 150K seems prudent.

      I bought comfort access (keyless entry/go), it will likely need a door handle replacement eventually. But I also don’t lock my car all that much, so maybe not.

      Window regulators do go on these cars, but I rarely open the windows so hard to say on that one. Common but not ubiquitous issue.

      Other stuff is pretty much random chance. So far the only issue has been a shorted out power seat control box at 6mo. I’d say it has been the most reliable car I have owned, but my Fiat Abarth has had ZERO issues so far. Only had it 9mos though.

      What I WON’T do is buy the first year of production of ANY car, the idiots who bought early twin-turbo BMWs got what they deserved – well and truly sliced and diced by tech a little too far into the bleeding edge. The best model year of a car is the LAST model year of that car, almost universally. At least assuming the car is not in production long past its prime like a Panther. I also didn’t order several optional expensive dilemmas – no HID headlights or iDrive in my car. No AWD. And a manual transmission. What isn’t there won’t break.

      I have long thought the true genius of the Japanese is that they are very consistent in their engineering. I have had many friends who had Toyotas and Hondas that were GREAT for 120-150K miles, no issues at all. Then everything goes to hell all at once on them. The Germans are not so consistent. You get this “nickel and dime” impression, even though the car will likely go a very long time. And they do – there are FAR more 15-20yo European cars on the road here in Maine than Japanese cars. Of course in places with gentler climates and no inspection that will likely not be the case. But it doesn’t matter how well a car runs or how reliable it is when you can use the floor to strain pasta.

  • avatar
    jeffzekas

    Hey Jack, just a correction- some Corollas had transmission problems- but, to their credit, Toyota replaced the defective units FREE OF CHARGE (this happened to my oldest son with his ’09). Reading your missives has totally turned me off to EVER buying a Porsche, save a 1990 or so coupe, say, when I win the lottery.

    • 0 avatar
      360joules

      But Toyota also dicked around with owners of 3.0 liter Avalons with sludging failures. Talk about an owner demographic that drove lightly and followed some sort of maintenance schedule.

  • avatar
    daviel

    maybe a 356.

  • avatar
    brianyates

    Before some of you get too carried away slagging German cars you might
    want to think about the Ford Pinto,America’s most lethal weapon and the Corvair, another brilliant mistake, not to mention the the early Ford Exploder. Iveowned several French and german badged cars, allout of warranty except my presentBMW 550i.It doesn’t matter what you buy, they all have issues at some point.

    • 0 avatar
      jz78817

      “you might
      want to think about the Ford Pinto,America’s most lethal weapon”

      except it wasn’t.

      “and the Corvair, another brilliant mistake,”

      except the bad part of the Corvair was its snap oversteer, a trait shared by Porsche 911s.

      “not to mention the the early Ford Exploder.”

      what was wrong with it?

      “Iveowned several French and german badged cars, allout of warranty except my presentBMW 550i”

      I don’t think your argument is as persuasive as you think it is. You bring up a 40-year-old car, a 50-year-old car, and a 20-year-old SUV which had defective tires. Meanwhile, we’re talking about Porsche vehicles which are less than 10 years old.

      Is that the best you can do?

    • 0 avatar
      jeffzekas

      Pinto- owned one- but didn’t expect much for $3,000- would have been pissed off it cost me $70K!

  • avatar
    Cabriolet

    Boy this was some German car bashing. Some of the rantings made it sound like simple BS. I note that no one mentions Toyota pickups that the frames rusted so badly they could not pass inspection. Some even lost their spare tires on the parkways making it a thrill for the following driver. What about Subaru’s that blow head gaskets, drive shafts etc that Subaru stone walled. I have owned at least 70 cars over my lifetime and i am 77 years old. These were American, Asian, Swedish & German. Each car was different and after all these cars i loved the Swedes & German cars the best. So if i have problems and it is out of warranty i have to pay to have it fixed or fix it my self. Life is short get a car you like and enjoy it. I own two VW GTI’s and a Miata and i enjoy them all. To be honest other then oil changes, spark plugs & brake pads that,s all they require. I do agree that within 100,000 miles if a problem comes up the manufacture should stand behind their product after that you are on your own.

    • 0 avatar
      jeffzekas

      You are a very lucky man: you are perhaps the ONLY person in the USA who has owned German cars and not had expensive repairs! BTW: same as you, I’ve owned MANY cars. VW and BMW were the worst for insane repairs.

  • avatar
    APaGttH

    Hell hath no fury like a Baruth scorned.

  • avatar
    spyked

    I just want to know….if you are in the market for a premium but sporty SUV, what are you options? The buyers of these Cayennes had little to choose from. Cayenne/T-Reg, X5, ML500, Range Rover/Sport, and that’s it. Sure, any problem is bad, but in the scheme of things, a few thousand bucks isn’t the end of the world if you enjoy the car.

    Forget the mechanical failure, the really sad aspect of this article is that people here that drive Japanese cars and other lower end models sometimes “hate on” the buyers of finer vehicles, or, my favorite, call them posers or label whores because they have the nerve to spend their hard-earned money however they choose. I don’t get it – never will.

    • 0 avatar
      racer-esq.

      Hemi JGC or Durango. Mercedes GL platform, without the Mercedes hassle and price. If something does go wrong at least you don’t have to deal with a snotty Mercedes service writer.

      Baruth owns two Porsches, he’s free to comment on the low quality, underdeveloped stuff that particular VW brand currently gets away with.

      I didn’t look down on German cars until I owned one.

      • 0 avatar
        spyked

        Back when these Cayennes were bought, the Durango was ONLY for people that chewed tobacco and the JGC was in it’s worst generation ever.

        Now, the Durango and JGC are better, but far from premium or sporty unless you are talking SRT models. But those don’t exactly make you feel special from a luxury point of view. And now they’ve messed up the JGC again with the stupid new lights and transmission (it’s no longer a Merc 5 speed transmission).

        I can’t really blame anyone for buying or liking their Porsche SUV. Not my cup of tea…I’d rather have (and do have) the Merc most times, but I see the appeal of the others.

    • 0 avatar
      LeeK

      Yes, my post further above touches on this same point about the hostile attitudes by the more vocal respondents here of anyone who professes to like or own a car they don’t personally approve of. They are poseurs/idiots/pricks/lemmings for having the temerity of owning a Cayenne, despite it being one of, if not *the* best driving SUVs on the market.

      I don’t own one and most likely never will. I don’t understand the bile generated by Porsche traditionalists over the betrayal that Porsche supposedly inflicted on them by offering an SUV and now the Panamera sedan. I guess all they should sell is the Boxster/Cayman and 911. Even then they probably wouldn’t be happy because they have liquid-cooled engines now, another betrayal.

      I can see more than few situations where one might need an SUV over a regular car. Why would one not be pleased that there is a performance-oriented alternative if one preferred that driving experience? I drove a Nissan Pathfinder daily for a couple of years. It was numb on the road, got about 15 MPG, and the brakes truly scared me in panic stop situations. Would I have prefered a Porsche Cayenne instead? Hell yeah.

      • 0 avatar
        krhodes1

        All I can say is that jealousy is an ugly emotion…

        An awful lot of “I could afford to drive a German car, but I choose not to because they are just crap driven by poseurs” around here. I have to think that 90% of folks saying that simply cannot afford to drive anything better than a used Camry. Because if they care enough about cars to bother being here at all, they would probably drive something more interesting if they actually could.

        Now I do have respect for people who are genuinely enthusiastic about cars that are not to my taste. For example Zackman and his Impala, Hummer, or even Big Truck Series, though I have teased him for being like a big teenager with his MOAR POWAH rantings. But I can’t believe anyone who has any passion about cars at all can be genuinely passionate about a dull as dishwater beigemobile to the extent that they would still choose it even if they could afford something better. Heck, *I* even think the Infinitis are almost as good to drive as BMWs, and they are just about as reliable as anything on the road within the limits of being complex cars.

    • 0 avatar
      azmtbkr81

      “premium but sporty SUV”

      All the money in the world can’t buy good taste. The Cayenne is the McMansion of the high-end car market: large, brash, and showy without being particularly well crafted or interesting.

    • 0 avatar
      tjh8402

      @spyked – I can’t speak for others, but I have the same distaste for the purchase of the Cayenne that I expressed in the article about whichever Hyundai crossover it was that started a flame war a week or two ago – namely that this is a pointless vehicle for how most people use them and is merely a vanity purchase. If you want to haul stuff in a premium brand vehicle that drives great, get an E63 AMG wagon or a Cadillac CTS-V wagon and drive rings around the Cayenne. I actually see a better case for the Cayenne than the aforementioned Hyundai because the Cayenne does actually perform well offroad and can tow. I salute the guy who tows his 914 racecar around, but how many Cayennes do you see with boats or racecars in tow, or how many do you see out in the mountains camping? As a grocery getter/soccer team shuttle/girls night out party vehicle, the Cayenne is as a pointless, wasteful, vanity purchase like any other SUV, whether its a RAV4 or a Cayenne Turbo S. If it makes you feel any better, I don’t feel much better about the decision to buy an automatic Corvette or 911.

      • 0 avatar
        hubcap

        ” As a grocery getter/soccer team shuttle/girls night out party vehicle, the Cayenne is as a pointless, wasteful, vanity purchase like any other SUV, whether its a RAV4 or a Cayenne Turbo S.”

        I’m curious. What makes it wasteful because from where I’m sitting that could apply to a wide swath of vehicles. It sounds as if you’re saying that SUVs/CUVs are wasteful in general if you’re not using them to haul, carry, or explore the great outdoors. That for everyday, mundane duties they’re are better choices but isn’t that also true of cars?

        Do you really need a CTS-V to haul groceries or an M5 to deliver kids to practice. I wouldn’t call either wasteful it’s just people buying what they want. We rarely buy the minimum to get by. If we did we’d all be driving Versas, Smarts or some other rolling penalty box.

        • 0 avatar
          tjh8402

          @hubcap – in the interest of not totally hijacking this thread and starting yet another flame war over the pros and cons of SUVs and crossovers, I’ll direct you to my comments in the review of the Hyundai Santa Fe. The simple answer is that people who buy SUV’s/CUVs but never use them for hauling/offroading are buying the car for image reasons. You can still have fun getting groceries or picking up kids from school with an M5 or CTS-V, and have more fun with one of those than a Cayenne or X5 M thanks to the better handling. That being said, I’d have a similarly negative view of buying and driving an AMG or M sedan and then never pushing it or using it’s capabilities, for the same reason that it means you just bought it for the image or to impress people. As I said, in the above post, I’m not a fan of cruising around in automatic Corvettes or 911s either.

  • avatar
    MK

    Lol awesome! C’mon jack everybody who’s owned a Pcar knows the German plastics SUCK!

    Among other things brittle and plastic-y, My 77 924 “Weltmeister” edition had the plastic expansion tank crack right down the seam.

    The problem ? My 99 996 had the expansion tank crack right down the seam :,( (Among other brittle plastic-y things).

    Oh well, sure beats driving a Camry!

  • avatar
    dartman

    Stereotypes and assumptions based on so-called “common knowledge” mehh…Here’s a stereotype: my guess is 7 out of 10 of the German bashers here have never even driven one of Deutschlands finest, much less owned a new one.

    I bought a Toyota Supra GT in 1982 brand new; beautiful black car with a silky inline DOHC 6 with I believe 160hp or so, fantastic GT car with top of the line credentials for the time. With less than 12k on odo the 6 developed a miss that couldn’t easily be cured with a new spark plug, wire or coil; I finally determined the problem was worn lobes on one of the camshafts. I took it to a dealer who confirmed my diagnosis and said tuff-luck son you are blooking at about a $2k repair on your new $16k Japanese supercar…I called in the regional manufacturer guy and he agreed with the dealer. Not having $2k and barely able to afford the $386/month nut in 1982 dollars I did what every sensible gear head would do and ordered up the $400 or so in parts. Funny thing, when I received the new camshafts I noticed the holes drilled in the lobes to lubricate the rocker/followers were substantially larger than the original. (The Supra had hollow camshafts and and lubricated the valve train thru them) Gotcha! I thought and asked for a meeting to present my proof of manufacturing defect to the Company Man…he took one look and said: it doesn’t matter; you are out of warranty; tough luck. I didn’t buy another To product until 2008 when I bought my Tundra; against my wife’s wishes. Between 1982 and 2008 we bought at least 7 other cars/trucks–none were Toyotas. The wife still refuses to have anything to do with Toyota-san or its subsidiaries(Lexus) and claims she never will…their loss as she’s on her 2nd BMW and probably will live to own at least 5 more new cars.

    If you want the absolute most reliable vehicle buy a pick-up, other than that buy what suits you and just realize Car manufacturers are like people; some suck, some don’t and it doesn’t matter how “rich” (prestigious) they are. I have been treated with more respect and concern for me as customer by GM and Ford than any other manufacturer beside BMW–they do treat their customers right in my experience and they listen. Do you know you can have an oil-change done at BMW dealership with 7 qts of synthetic oil for $79. How about break pads and rotors for $250/axle–that’s not outrageous.

    • 0 avatar
      jz78817

      “Do you know you can have an oil-change done at BMW dealership with 7 qts of synthetic oil for $79.”

      do you know I can have the same thing done at a Ford dealership on my Mustang GT for $40? ‘cept I get 8 quarts.

      • 0 avatar
        dartman

        …except it isn’t synthetic, best case scenario it’s motorcraft semi-syn, 5-20, not a bad oil, and ok if you change every 5k or so. If you run hard there are better choices…

        FWIW one of my previous vehicles was an Expedition and I used the “Ford Fast Lane” service regularly, quick, high value service performed by Factory Certified techs. Ford IMO offers the best service after the sale…no Ford hater here.

        • 0 avatar
          jz78817

          so it isn’t fully synthetic. why should I give a crap? And why should I change it every 5k (and give me a better reason than “because dartman says so.”)

          • 0 avatar
            dartman

            Unless you are planning on keeping the car for longer until you make the last payment/lease payment I wouldn’t do anything more than the factory recommendation either.

            However if you want to keep it 10+ years and 150k+ miles a reputable oil analysis will tell you the appropriate time between changes. With a high-quality full Synthetic the time between changes; it will likely be longer than the manufacturer’s recommendation. BITOG is an excellent resource on all things oil/lubricants related if you are interested; but I get the sense that your only concern is that it starts and goes every time you get in it at a minimal cost;…nothing wrong with that.. That’s all most women are interested in…jus’ sayin’…

          • 0 avatar
            dartman

            …and you call me a “sock-puppet?!” I had to look it up on the Urban Dictionary–Haha!

        • 0 avatar
          dartman

          While I’m at it…it was that same Expedition that was a stone cold reliable 4.6 l modular gutless wonder that couldn’t do better than 14mpg under any circumstances; but I fell in love when I saw the HUGE aluminum a-arm IRS. In 2002 mind you. That Expo drove excellently and awesome sight lines that allowed me to parallel park like a mini.

          At 100k or so it threw a CEL which was a bad coil. I took it to same Fast Lane dealer for a “tune-up” (replace plugs and bad coil and regular service), when they told me the coil would be $125 but to replace all 8 plugs would be $1000++ I went ballistic, but after confirming with two other dealers that was the going rate I authorized replacement of the coil and one plug. I then went on the search for a replacement.

          I found the Tundra and after one test drive of the all aluminum DOHC 5.7l V8, hooked up to the only 6 speed auto at the time, I was smitten with the power and acceleration. The fact that gas was hovering at $5 gallon in Cali at the time, in addition to the big $10,000 off on the windshield a deal was cut after I insisted upon $7k for the lethargic 4.6 Expo. (Note to Ford: sometimes great service isn’t enough; poor engineering leading to high repair costs on run-of-the-mill products is a recipe for disaster). The only equivalent product from Ford had “Harley” on the side, and they certainly weren’t offering $10k off of Monroney on those….). That’s how a long time Ford guy and Toy hater ended up in the evil empire in the Lone Star State.

          I bought two 2012 F150s – 2wd for my employees with the 5.0 Coyote, but the big Crew-Max (4wd) still beats them like rented mule; but they are nicer inside…but…so what…It’s a truck for Chrissakes! The big Toy has lived up to the reputation and with 150k plus miles it has only been normal maintenance and a surprising 16+ mpg from an old street racer who enjoys messin’ with the bees in the impromptu stoplight/on ramp challenges.

          • 0 avatar
            Lie2me

            “At 100k or so it threw a CEL which was a bad coil…. I then went on the search for a replacement”

            You went shopping for another vehicle because of a 125.00 coil?

          • 0 avatar
            jz78817

            “You went shopping for another vehicle because of a 125.00 coil?”

            You’re talking to someone who compared me to a “woman” (as if being female is inherently a bad thing) because I don’t do oil changes on the schedule he likes.

            Given his gushing over the 5.7 in the Tundra, I suspect we’re dealing with a sock puppet.

          • 0 avatar
            Lie2me

            That would be wrong, because if you were a woman you’d never get the oil changed, never. You’d never get gas except that the car stops moving if you don’t.

  • avatar
    hubcap

    *sniff-sniff* The smellfungi appear to be increasing in number and their criticisms become even more severe.

    Look, Porsche should take care of their customers. Hopefully they will but we’ll see. This should not be an indictment of all German cars or even all Pcars. Isht happens that for one reason or another isn’t identified in the development process and makes its way to the fleet. It happens regularly to all manufacturers.

    If I we’re buying a new car and had my eye on a Cayman this would not deter me. Live hard, love hard, drive hard. You only go around once and life’s too short to endure a rolling piece of milquetoast.

    • 0 avatar
      jeffzekas

      Wow. So, if you met a pretty girl who was schizo, took heroin and had black outs, you’d still marry her, even after everyone warned you? That’s not living hard, that’s living dumb. (Spoken after being married twice and being burned MANY times by MANY German cars).

      • 0 avatar
        Lie2me

        You’ve taken “learning the hard way” to an art form

        • 0 avatar
          dartman

          “You went shopping for another vehicle because of a 125.00 coil?”

          The $125 coil(the part only) was not unreasonable, if you read further the fact that they wanted almost $1,200 to replace all 8 spark plugs and only one coil was a shocker as I tried to state.

          Truth be known though I was getting tired of the weak 4.6 and the Expedition was my company vehicle. It was fully depreciated, and in 2008 section 179 expensing of vehicles allowing a $25k tax deduction and accelerated depreciation was still available. Look it up–some called it the “Hummer Tax Loophole”- God Bless America!- This tax break along with $10k off of the $45k sticker and $7k for the old Expedition made the decision easy. My net cost of the vehicle after discounts and tax breaks is well under $20k. The Tundra today will easily bring $21k in a private party sale after 5 years, so other than gas, oil, and maintenance, (there have been no repairs)The Tundra cost “nothing”…what would you have done?

          • 0 avatar
            Lie2me

            So, there was other reasons, OK. I had a coil go out on an Escape, the dealer wanted to change all six of them, I ask why when only one needed replacing? They said it was easier for them and the other coils might follow. I just had the one replaced, the others never gave me any trouble for the next 100K miles until I traded it. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

      • 0 avatar
        krhodes1

        But what do you consider being “burned”? I am genuinely curious, as I have owned ~30 cars, and all but 2 of them were European. Other than the four cars I have bought new (VW, Saab, BMW, Fiat), only two cost $10K (two Volvos), the rest were less than $6K each. They probably averaged around 125-150K miles, maybe more. The vast majority gave me excellent service. I think the most I have ever spent on a single repair was $700 to fix the A/C on a Volvo 744. Though my current Porsche 924S project is going to set a record for spending before I am done. Sigh. On a clean 60K mile car… Don’t let cars sit for a decade. Bad, very, very bad.

        I had an ’82 Volvo 245T that was an utter heap that I never should have bought. everything under the sun went wrong with it, because it was all bad when I bought the thing. I had the A/C compressor blow up twice on an ’87 744. But that car went over 400K miles before the tinworm got it. My Peugeots (3 505s, 2 504s) were ALL notably reliable, as were the rest of the Volvos. I had an ’85 Saab 900T that was kind of a money pit, but it had 185K on it when I bought it and I am a perfectionist to some extent, and this was before I had my own garage to work on cars in. And even though I tend to get through cars regularly, most of them got sold to friends and “stayed in the family” so I usually know what happened to them long-term. My first BMW was an ’91 318is, which was as reliable as an axe despite being a 160K salvage title car due to a theft recovery. My second was a nicer ’91 318is, then I had two ’86 535i’s plus I looked after my Mom’s ’83 528e and friend’s e36, e46, and e39 – all were reasonably trouble-free other than the typical known issues – plastic cooling system bits, the e39 needed a driveshaft at 130K. I’ve had friends with Toyotas and Hondas that were much more troublesome once they got old, though they probably had a fewer issues when they were new.

        • 0 avatar
          hgrunt

          Current E30 ’91 318is owner here too! It’s been a reliable runner for me too. When I picked it up, it was severely neglected in maintenance, so I ended up replacing a bunch of worn suspension parts. I was surprised it wasn’t particularly difficult to do, and how well the car is laid out.

          Next up is servicing the cooling system…I changed the stuck-open thermostat only to discover cracks in the radiator that I previously didn’t notice because the system never got that hot.

    • 0 avatar
      hubcap

      “So, if you met a pretty girl who was schizo, took heroin and had black outs, you’d still marry her, even after everyone warned you?”

      I’d like to think I’d have to acumen to see that and act accordingly. Nevertheless, I wouldn’t equate purchasing a new German luxury car to getting hitched to a drug addled head case.

  • avatar
    CelticPete

    All this is interesting Jack – cept Porsche is considered reliable by both JDPower and CR last I checked.. Heck sister brand Audi beat Honda..

    The thing about reliability though – is its model dependent. Buy a 911 drive in sanely you will be fine. Cayenne has a been a problem. The Macan should be fine though as its basically an A4..


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