Because We Can: The German SUV 'Coupe' Scene Now Comprises Three Automakers

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
because we can the german suv 8216 coupe scene now comprises three automakers

Let it never be said that car companies don’t offer people what they want, because, according to sales data, BMW and Mercedes-Benz haven’t sold zero X4s, X6s, GLE Coupes, and GLC Coupes.

There is a market for four-door SUVs with steeply raked rears. Just because you don’t want one and hate the erroneous application of the word “coupe” (this author belongs in both camps) doesn’t mean your neighbor feels the same way. What you see above is Porsche’s first member of this strange new cabal of vehicles. It’s the Cayenne.

The Cayenne Coupe.

Porsche’s entry to the game comes a year after the North American debut of the third-generation Cayenne. At the time, back in Stuttgart, designers were penning a model that the brand no doubt wished it could have fielded years earlier, if only as a retort to its German rivals.

Alas, screwing with a model’s proportions requires advanced planning. And the 2020 Cayenne Coupe does differ from its namesake sibling in a number of ways: For a more rakish roofline, the roof’s leading edge is eight-tenths of an inch lower than on the Cayenne, shortening the front A-pillars and reducing windshield height. Rear passengers sit 1.2 inches lower in this vehicle. Its hips — the rear doors and sail panels — stretch horizontally by an additional seven-tenths of an inch.

Looking to attract a mate? The rear spoiler, tucked between the expansive (and standard) panoramic roof glass and the not-for-sliding rear window, extends upwards by 5.3 inches at speeds above 55 mph. Domestic SUVs seldom need extra downforce in the rear.

If you’re interested in lightening your load, a carbon roof can be had with one of the three optional sports packages, and is also available as a standalone feature. The snazzy seat inserts you see above come with the Sport Design package, which also swaps the model’s standard 20-inch wheels for low-weight 22-inch GT Design numbers. Expect to shave a tenth of a second off your 0-62 run (to 5.9 seconds). Turbo Coupe buyers, who gain 21-inch wheels as their stock setup, see a performance exhaust with this package.

Power comes to stock Cayenne Coupe buyers in the form of a turbocharged 3.0-liter V6, good for 335 horsepower and 332 lb-ft of torque, though signing for a Turbo Coupe brings a twin-turbo 4.0-liter V8 into the fold. That engine generates 542 hp and 568 lb-ft, propelling the four-seater to 62 mph in 3.9 seconds. Both of these engines pair with a ZF eight-speed automatic.

Of course, opting for a “coupe” SUV is not with its drawbacks, as cargo volume inevitably gets a haircut. Porsche claims owners will find 22 cubic feet of toy and grocery capacity behind the rear seat (21.2 in the Turbo Coupe), which is less than the 27.1 cubes offered in the Cayenne. This will hardly matter to buyers longing for a slinkier-looking Porsche SUV.

While the 2020 Porsche Cayenne Coupe should start hitting German dealerships in early summer, American customers will have to wait until fall. Once on these shores, basic coupes will start at $76,550 after destination. Turbo Coupes carry a steep premium — Porsche demands $131,150 for the privilege of driving away in the most voluptuous of Cayennes.

[Images: Porsche AG]

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  • Thatoneguy247 Thatoneguy247 on Mar 22, 2019

    The Kia Soul is considered a CUV despite having almost identical proportions to the Scion xB, a hatchback car. The fight for accurate vehicle segment classification was lost a long time ago. ...or we could just call everything smaller than a Tahoe a CUV. "Compact" now includes anything from a VW Golf to a Jeep Grand Cherokee, and "utility" is a laughable description of a car with a roofline, ride height, and rear storage space as compromised as most of this segment, so we're painting a broad brush. I can't wait for x automaker's next line of CUVs, featuring anywhere from 2 to 5 doors, off-road capability somewhere between nonexistent and less existent, and an infotainment system that forgoes decades of ergonomically-sensible design in the technology that only people older than myself will remember as the "volume knob".

  • Whatnext Whatnext on Mar 22, 2019

    Since the first two entrants in this malformed segment seem to be Douchebag Approved, I expect the Porsche to attract the same kind of buyer.

  • Brett Woods 2023 Corvette base model.
  • Paul Taka Hi, where can I find 1982 Honda prelude junkyards in 50 states
  • Poltergeist Make sure you order the optional Dungdai fire suppression system.
  • Prabirmehta I charge my EV at home 100% of the time. The EV is used for in-town driving and the gas guzzling SUV is used for out of town trips. This results in a huge cost saving and rare trips to the gas station.
  • Conundrum Three cylinder Ford Escapes, Chevy whatever it is that competes, and now the Rogue. Great, ain't it? Toyota'll be next with a de-tuned GR Corolla/Yaris powerplant. It's your life getting better and better, yes indeed. A piston costs money, you know.The Rogue and Altima used to have the zero graviy foam front seats. Comfy, but the new Rogue dumps that advance. Costs money. And that color-co-ordinated gray interior, my, ain't it luvverly? Ten years after they perfected it in the first Versa to appeal to the terminally depressed, it graduates to the Rogue.There's nothing decent to buy on the market for normal money. Not a damn thing interests me at all.