Porsche's 2019 Cayenne Coupe puts some overdue style and spirit into the same-same SUV scene.
The result will be music to many family motorist's ears: finally, an SUV that looks and drives more like a sports car than a truck.
It even has a retractable 911-style rear wing that punches 135 millimetres into the airflow once the Cayenne Coupe hits 90 km/h.
Around 20 per cent of Cayenne buyers are expected to move to the new Coupe, which lands here in September (starting at $128,000) with a high level of standard equipment, a back seat uncompromised by the faster glasshouse shape, and equally punchy performance across the V6, V6 twin-turbo and V8 twin-turbo models.
Seen briefly from the front the Coupe looks like any other Cayenne, although the windscreen is a little reclined for a smoother profile and better airflow.
But slide to the side and things change dramatically, as the shorter and lower-line roof and swoopier profile come into view.
Work all the way to the rear and you can clearly see a new tailgate, a numberplate that is tucked low into the bumper, and the wing.
So the Coupe is longer, lower and wider. And every car comes with a giant panoramic sunroof, unless the owner ticks the box for the optional carbon fibre roof that is a first in the Cayenne.
Converting the Coupe, which was developed in tandem with the Cayenne SUV, mean developing all new bodywork for everything aft of the bonnet and front guards. Including all the glass.
Overall, the effect is much more svelte than something like a Mercedes-Benz GLE Coupe and not nearly as confronting as a BMX X6.
The engines are the same three choices as in the Cayenne SUV, with a hybrid to follow later in the year, and an eight-speed automatic gearbox and all-wheel drive across the range.
The big change is 18 millimetres of extra width in the rear suspension, which should slightly improve stability but has mostly been done to suit the pumped-out bodywork around the back wheels.
At the same time, Porsche has pulled off a sci-fi trick: like Dr Who's TARDIS, the Coupe seems somehow bigger on the inside.
While rear-seat comfort and boot space are the usual casualties of a Coupe conversion, Porsche has dropped the back seat by a full 30 millimetres to preserve the head space from the SUV and, likewise, the luggage space is within a coupe of litres of carrying capacity.
The back seat comes standard with two passenger places and a centre console, but it costs no more to go to a conventional three-person layout.
In the front, the layout is the same as the SUV, with big twin display screens, lovely leather sports seats with eight-way adjustment (14-way with massage in the Turbo) plus Bose sound and the Sports Chrono package that puts an analogue stopwatch onto the top of the dash. There are four USB ports and an inbuilt 4G SIM for mobile connectivity.
Australia buyers gets extra equipment above the global package for the Coupe, with a value-add that offsets prices between $11,000 and $13,000 higher than the SUV, including the roof, metallic pain and alloy wheels that range from 20 to 22 inches in diameter.
Executive Traveller jetted to Austria for a few days with the Cayenne Coupe.
The roads are mountainous and twisty, but far smoother than Australia, and the weather is mostly fine with snow-capped peaks on the horizon – perfect for a Coupe version of what is already one of the best driving cars in its class.
That SUV heft always hurts when you want to hustle, but the Coupe is planted and responsive. The basic V6 model gets along pretty well and the V8 is a brute that punches hard in the heavyweight league.