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First Drive: 2011 Porsche Cayenne S Hybrid

Green…but still mean.

by on Sep.01, 2009

The 2011 Porsche Cayenne S Hybrid is expected to deliver about 28% better mileage than the standard Cayenne V-6, but will match the performance of the SUV with a big V-8.

The Porsche Cayenne S Hybrid is expected to deliver about 28% better mileage than the standard Cayenne V-6, but will match the performance of the SUV with a big V-8.

The Porsche Cayenne has always struck some folks as a bit of an oxymoron, but the German maker has arguably done as good a job as any manufacturing putting the “sport” back in sport-utility vehicle.  Now, however, Porsche is going a step further, and with the upcoming launch of its 2011 Cayenne S Hybrid, it hopes to prove that an SUV can be mean and green.

Though the hybrid-electric vehicle, or HEV, is still about a year away from production, we were given a chance to log some miles when Dr. Michael Leiters, the project’s program manager, rolled into town with one of his first prototypes.

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At first glance, you’d not spot anything different about the 2011 Porsche Cayenne S Hybrid – not unless you’d parked on a scale, where it would weigh in about 400 pounds more than the base Cayenne V-6.  Considering all that the carmaker has packed into the various nooks and crannies of the big ute, that’s not as much as you might expect.

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