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6 Months With the Cheapest Porsche Cayenne Turbo in the USA

I suppose if my hooptie fleet had an MVP, it would be my 2004 Porsche Cayenne Turbo. It’s been six months since I purchased the cheapest Cayenne Turbo in the United States — and despite being comprised of a giant conglomeration of aging German electronics eager to destroy any hope of my daughter having a college fund, it’s been totally reliable. I’ve used it tow vehicles and trek through rugged trails — and I’ve driven it 6,000 miles across five states. Since I haven’t spent any money repairing it, I’ve decided to reward the Cayenne with some upgrades — or downgrades, depending on how you interpret my terrible decisions. See the 2004 Porsche Cayenne models for sale near you

But before I go over six months with my Cayenne and the changes I’m making, I wanted to mark the 1-year anniversary of my start with Oversteer. After begging Doug for weeks to become a weird sideshow to his main attraction, I think he grew tired of my daily 1,000-word emails and finally gave me a shot. Oversteer has allowed me to document my descent into madness (and it probably triggered it) — but it’s truly been the happiest year of my life. For those wondering, Doug is just as affable and goofy in person — and as a boss. Despite his insanely busy schedule, he took way more time than he should’ve to help develop my writing and coach me on the wacky world of YouTube. I tried to give him my Chrysler Lebaron as thanks, but he politely refused. I literally can’t even give that junker away.

Anyway, back to the Cayenne, which has miraculously been a joy to own. After sorting its minor needs and having one vacuum-line crack in the first week of ownership, it’s never given me a lick of trouble over six months and 6,000 miles. Luck certainly has something to do with this — especially with the massive amount of technology and electrical accessories inside — but I also think the Cayenne Turbo was way overbuilt. The 450-horsepower turbocharged V8 is still impressive 13 years later, and I imagine the engineers at Porsche went overboard with the powertrain to make sure it could handle all that power. It was also built to be a very capable offroader, even though most Cayenne models will never leave pavement — which surely contributes to its durability, as well.

Another anomaly I’ve noticed with this Cayenne is the air suspension, which seems to have a much lower failure rate with age compared to its Mercedes and Land Rover counterparts — leaving me to wonder what exactly Porsche did differently.

In my quest to improve the looks of my Cayenne, the air suspension was one of the items I modified. By inserting longer rods that connect the height sensors to the axles, which tricks the computers into thinking the vehicle is sitting higher, this Porsche can have a slammed look similar to any car with an aftermarket air-ride system. About 5 millimeters of extra length on the sensor rod results in a suspension drop of approximately two inches. By installing 22×10.5-in wheels, fender gap is completely eliminated with the suspension set to the lowest setting. Since the Cayenne has five height settings, it’s easy to raise the car back to a more stock height for normal driving.

The decision to buy new aftermarket wheels was brought on by worn tires, and the original 19-in wheels had endured several violent assaults with the curb. I wanted black wheels, partially because Doug said he hated black wheels — and I couldn’t miss the trolling opportunity. But I also wanted to give this Cayenne a more modern look.

The headlights on my Porsche were a huge eyesore — even more than they were new — since they were cloudy and water was starting to collect inside. In this case, the aftermarket has saved the day, creating a modernized headlight setup that resembles a newer Cayenne — complete with the goofy LED running lights and turn signals. Once I finish the transformation by painting the silver trim black to match the blacked-out theme, this Cayenne should look much newer.

In other words: Even with total reliability, I still found a way to throw money down the drain. I look forward to using my jerry-rigged factory suspension setup to occasionally join stance nation — without losing any of the Cayenne’s practicality. Although, with the fancy new shoes, its mountain climbing days are probably over. Find a 2004 Porsche Cayenne for sale

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  1. Tell me more about this lifted Turbo at 1:59. I bought a 2004 CTT five thousand miles ago that I agree is a hilariously good car for the money, but it’s going to need new tires soon. Can they run like the one pictured on the stock air suspension or will they always drop down at 20mph? Can you do the opposite of your lowering trick to get it to handle some meatier tires?

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