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2018 vs. 2019 Porsche Cayenne: What’s the Difference?

  • The all-new 2019 Porsche Cayenne looks similar to the 2018 model but comes with several improvements.

  • The Cayenne has a new turbocharged V6 as its base engine.

  • Multiple levels of performance mean there’s a Cayenne for everyone who could want a Porsche SUV.

The Porsche Cayenne wasn’t the first luxury SUV of its kind, but it’s always had the distinction of being the enthusiast’s choice in its class. Not only is it comfortable and well-equipped like all of its rivals, but it also has the driving behavior of a Porsche with strong engine choices and respectable handling characteristics for an SUV.

With the all-new third-generation 2019 Cayenne arriving on the scene, all of the characteristics the Porsche SUV is known for are enhanced. It looks about the same as the outgoing 2018 model so let’s take a closer look at what’s new for 2019.

2018 vs. 2019 Porsche Cayenne exterior

Exterior

The styling updates of the 2019 Porsche Cayenne are subtle, but once you identify them, they become more significant. Perhaps the most noticeable difference between the two is the rear end. The 2018 model has two separate taillights while the 2019 model adopts a horizontal light bar that’s been spreading through the Porsche model range. The front grille has also been revised with more pronounced horizontal lines and a cleaner design overall.

The Cayenne grew a little bit for 2019. The new model is three inches longer than the outgoing Cayenne, and it has a new quirk that you might not notice at first glance. Like Porsche sports cars, the Cayenne now has staggered wheels that are wider in the back and narrower in the front.

2018 vs. 2019 Porsche Cayenne interior

Interior

The differences on the inside of the new Cayenne are much bigger than the differences on the outside. The new third-generation model has a cleaner design, a more premium look and feel, as well as more advanced technology. The first thing you’ll notice is the wide infotainment screen and center stack with haptic feedback buttons that are clearly laid out. This is in contrast to the 2018 model with the smaller screen and more old-fashioned buttons making the interior look a little dated.

As for interior comfort, both SUVs are very comfortable with plenty of room in the back seat. Both Cayennes are 2-row, 5-seat SUVs with no third row available. Along with ample passenger space, there’s plenty of room for cargo with the 2019 model having a little more cargo room than the 2018 Cayenne. They both have a few nice touches that are distinctly Porsche like pronounced handles for both the driver and the passenger and the ignition to the left of the steering wheel.

2018 vs. 2019 Porsche Cayenne mechanicals

Mechanicals

The Porsche lineup is famous for offering multiple levels of performance for various tastes and budgets and the Cayenne is no different. Here’s how the 2018 and 2019 Cayenne compare in performance and fuel economy.

2018 Porsche Cayenne Engines

  • Base; 3.6-liter V6; 300 horsepower; 18 miles per gallon in the city and 24 mpg on the highway

  • S; 3.6-liter turbocharged V6; 420 hp; 17 mpg city/24 mpg hwy

  • GTS; 3.6-liter turbocharged V6; 440 hp; 16 mpg city/23 mpg hwy

  • Turbo; 4.8-liter turbocharged V8; 520 hp; 14 mpg city/21 mpg hwy

  • Turbo S; 4.8-liter turbocharged V8; 570 hp; 14 mpg city/21 mpg hwy

  • S E-Hybrid; 3.0-liter hybrid supercharged V6; 416 hp, 47 combined MPGe

2019 Porsche Cayenne Engines

  • Base; 3.0-liter turbocharged V6; 335 hp; 19 mpg city/23 mpg hwy

  • S; 2.9-liter twin-turbo V6; 434 hp; 18 mpg city/23 mpg hwy

  • Turbo; 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8; 541 hp

  • E-Hybrid; 3.0-liter turbocharged hybrid V6; 335 hp

As of this writing, EPA fuel economy estimates are not available for the 2019 Cayenne Turbo and E-Hybrid models. Fuel economy numbers are very similar between the two Cayenne models when you go through the trims, but you’ll notice that the 2019 models offer stronger performance.

All Cayenne models for both 2018 and 2019 come standard with all-wheel drive on every trim. That makes the Cayenne a versatile choice both on dry roads for balanced performance and in snowy climates where you could use the extra traction.

2018 vs. 2019 Porsche Cayenne pricing

Pricing

The new generation of the Cayenne brought with it a price increase. The starting MSRP of the 2018 Cayenne is $60,600 and the 2019 Cayenne starts at $65,700. As you work your way up the trims, the 2019 model continues to be the more expensive Cayenne at each level. Considering the improvements in the new model like better performance, a nicer interior and more modern tech, the Cayenne’s price increase for 2019 is pretty justifiable.

2018 vs. 2019 Porsche Cayenne conclusion 

Conclusion

The 2019 Porsche Cayenne takes the idea of the luxury SUV for people who love driving and takes it a step further in the right direction. It may not be the most affordable nor the most luxurious SUV in its class, but if you’re looking for the utility of an SUV in a vehicle that truly drives like a Porsche, the 2019 Cayenne is a perfect fit for you.

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Eric Brandt
Eric Brandt is an author specializing in Oversteer content, new car reviews, and finding the best car, truck, and SUV deals each month. Born and raised in Wisconsin, Eric can often be found exploring the north woods on his 1983 Honda Gold Wing when the weather allows it. Father of four, husband of one, and unapologetic minivan enthusiast. Eric mastered driving stick by having a 3-cylinder Chevy Metro as his only car for a year and regrets nothing.

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