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Porsche bringing Cayenne Diesel to the US for 2013

Porsche AG has announced that they will soon begin offering the 2013 Porsche Cayenne Diesel in the United States – marking the first time that the Stuttgart-based automaker has offered a diesel powered vehicles in the US market as consumer perception of diesel vehicles has slowly changed over the past decade.

The 2013 Porsche Cayenne Diesel is powered by a turbocharged 3.0L diesel V6 – sending 240 horsepower and 406lb-ft of torque to all four wheels via a Tiptronic 8-speed automatic transmission and a full-time all wheel drive system. This affords the diesel burning Cayenne the ability to move out from 0-60 in 7.2 seconds (2 tenths quicker than the base model Cayenne) while also hitting a top speed of 135 miles per hour. More importantly, the German automaker expects that the Cayenne Diesel will offer fuel economy figured in the range of 20 miles per gallon around town and 28mpg on the open road. While we will have to wait for the official figures from the EPA later this year, those figures should be pretty accurate based on the 19/28mpg achieved by the Volkswagen Touareg with the same turbo diesel V6. These are figures that would put the Porsche Cayenne Diesel top the segment in terms of fuel economy – allowing the Cayenne Diesel to go over 740 miles on a single tank of diesel fuel.

The 2013 Porsche Cayenne Diesel carries a base price of $55,750 (not including the $975 destination fee) so compared to the base price for the standard Cayenne with the 3.6L gasoline V6, the diesel engine and additional features (full time AWD, locking differential) add about $6,900 to the price of the base model. You are technically paying more for less horsepower (the 3.6L V6 makes 300hp to the diesel’s 240) but with loads more torque than the entry level gas engine, the Cayenne Diesel offers vastly more capabilities – specifically in the area of towing. Porsche makes sure to mention that the Cayenne Diesel can tow “heavy trailer loads” but they do not go into detail as to what the towing capacity will be for the new oil-burning Cayenne. The only real external change for the diesel models is the addition of “diesel” badging on the front fenders.

The 2013 Porsche Cayenne Diesel will join the American Porsche lineup later this year, becoming the 5th trimline in the sport utility vehicle family. The Cayenne Diesel joins the base Cayenne, the Cayenne S (base MSRP price of $65,850), the Cayenne S Hybrid (base MSRP price of $69,850) and the Cayenne Turbo (base MSRP price of $108,750).

Turbocharged diesel models have long been popular in Europe but the negative perception in the US has prevented some of the more popular diesel powered models from making the trip across the pond. Many Americans associate diesel engines with being noisy, chattering engines that constantly blow thick smoke out the exhaust but the evolution of clean diesel technology, many American consumers are looking at diesel engines in a new light. The Porsche Cayenne Diesel offers the level of Porsche luxury that a buyer expects combined with clean diesel technology with gobs of torque and towing ability; so there is a good chance that the Cayenne Diesel could be helping to grow the trend of diesel passenger vehicles in the US.