Porsche Cayenne Years To Avoid | 14 Best & Worst Models 2023

Source: hdqwalls

The Porsche Cayenne was one of the first high-end Luxury SUVs to be introduced. In 2002, this midsize SUV was introduced. Five generations have been released since then. With the introduction of direct injection technology in 2008, the Cayenne once again became one of Porsche’s only off-road cars.

Since Cayenne’s debut, Porsche has made numerous updates, but not all of them have been beneficial. It’s recommended to have a basic know-how of some best and worst model years to ensure a smooth driving experience.

Porsche Cayenne years to avoid include 2003-2005, 2011, 2012, and 2021; they are considered the worst. The best years for the Porsche Cayenne include 2015-2020, 2022, and 2023. This result was concluded from trustworthy sources such as NHTSA, Edmund, JD Power, and Kelley Blue Book.

Porsche Cayenne Years To Avoid

Here are the Porsche Cayenne years that should be avoided. Based on expert reviews and customer complaints, the below-mentioned models are the worst Porsche Cayenne years.

#6 Worst Year: 2021 Porsche Cayenne (3.98 Rating)

Source: Car and drive

Even though it’s just two years old, the 2021 model has already established itself as one of the worst in its class. This model has earned its place among the dismal offerings due to its problematic track record of 4 recalls and 8 customer complaints.

According to NHTSA, Some of the most severe issues with the 2021 Cayenne involve the vehicle’s powertrain, which has been misidentified as engine or service brake problems and “unknown or other” issues when, in fact, they are related to the check engine light (CEL).

Common Problems:

  • Faulty equipment
  • Power train problems
  • Faulty service brakes

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

#5 Worst Year: 2012 Porsche Cayenne (3.95 Rating)

Source: Pinterest / Hazar

The 2012 Cayenne was another poorly performing model, with five recalls. The first and largest recall was related to the brake pedal because of a potential problem with the pivot pin. However, some other faults are also seen, which could lead to crashes in rare circumstances.

Another major recall happened because headlights may lose and detach from the fender, blocking the driver’s view entirely.

Common Problems:

  • Transfer case issues
  • The drive train wore out.
  • Clunking noise

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

#4 Worst Year: 2005 Porsche Cayenne (3.92 Rating)

Source: Edmunds

The 2005 Cayenne is part of the first generation problematic year but less severe than the 2004 model. For the 2005 model year, there were four separate recalls. These recalls were useful in addressing the problems. But many others think the car shouldn’t have been issued in this condition at all.

One of the problems involved the vehicle’s power train. It would be very easy for the gear position to slip. The gasoline pump had problems as well. Even the safety belts were recalled, which could be a problem in an accident.

Common Problems:

  • No compression in #2 and #6 cylinders
  • Complete brake failure

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

Related: 20 Best & Worst Toyota Highlander Years | Recalls, Complaints

#3 Worst Year: 2011 Porsche Cayenne (3.88 Rating)

Source: mundoautomotor

The 2011 model is the worst you can get because of all the early-onset engine issues. People have reported problems such as engines dying at under 40,000 miles, brakes wearing out too soon at around 20,000 miles, and cars overheating at roughly 15,000.

The 2011 Porsche Cayenne has the worst engine failure of any model from this lineup. Therefore, you should stay far away from it.

Common Problems:

  • Dead engine
  • Premature brake wear
  • Overheating

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

#2 Worst Year: 2003 Porsche Cayenne (3.77 Rating)

Source: top speed

While initial-model years of cars often face teething issues, the 2003 Cayenne, the first model of the first generation, also faces many issues. Fuel pump failure, leaking coolant from the thermostat housing, and premature wear of the brake pads and rotors are just a few of the problems plaguing the worst 2003 Cayenne model.

In addition to the other issues with this model, poor tire wear has been a persistent problem.

Common Problems:

  • Stalling due to failed fuel pump
  • Coolant leak
  • Problematic tire wear
  • Faulty powertrain

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

#1 Worst Year: 2004 Porsche Cayenne (3.13 Rating)

Source: top speed

With 100 customer complaints, the 2004 Porsche Cayenne is the worst of all and might be more trouble than it’s worth. The 2004 Porsche Cayenne has numerous issues with its cooling, drivetrain, and electrical systems.

Numerous vehicles’ plastic coolant lines have ruptured, and the driveshaft’s central carrier bearing has failed. For some customers, the problem is so severe that the car won’t start at all; for others, the problem is less severe but still an inconvenience that can cost up to $3,000 to fix. It is better to avoid this model.

Common Problems:

  • Stalling due to failed fuel pump
  • Coolant leak from the thermostat housing
  • Driveshaft: Center carrier bearing failure
  • Premature Tire wear

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

What Are The Best Years Of Porsche Cayenne?

Now let’s have a look at the best Porsche Cayenne years you can buy.

#8 Best Year: 2020 Porsche Cayenne (4.08 Rating)

Source: the car connection

According to the reviews, the way it drives is what people like best about it. With its sporty handling and other desirable features, many buyers believe they are getting their money’s worth.

Despite the high price of ownership and the complexity of some restrictions, there is plenty to like. For most people, it combines an SUV’s roominess and a powerful engine (up to 541 hp!). According to Kelley Blue Book, it has the highest predicted resale value of any 2-row luxury midsize SUV.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

#7 Best Year: 2016 Porsche Cayenne (4.23 Rating)

Source: auto evolution

The 2016 Cayenne is well-liked since it has so many convenient amenities. You get Apple CarPlay preinstalled and enhanced safety features for the driver. The 2016 Cayenne’s premium features become more apparent as time goes on.

There are a lot less “optional” parts. Porsche begins to standardize on giving you more of what you wish for. In 2016, no matter whatever trim you choose, you’ll receive more for your money.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

#6 Best Year: 2019 Porsche Cayenne (4.30 Rating)

Source: autocosmos

The 2019 Cayenne marks the introduction of the brand-new fifth-generation. It’s still relatively new, so it works well and reliably compared to 2021. Many of the used models for sale have been driven by an average of between 17,000 and 18,000. You may save up to $20,000 by opting for a used model.

The 2019 model year marks the debut of redesigned seats and a roomier cabin thanks to extensive upgrades. The 2019 Porsche Cayenne is ranked #3 in US News & World Report’s list of Luxury Midsize SUVs. In the category of Used Luxury Midsize SUVs, it ranks even higher.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

#5 Best Year: 2015 Porsche Cayenne (4.30 Rating)

Source: auto guide

The 2015 Cayenne marks the beginning of the fourth generation. The used 2015 Cayenne models you locate may have a fair amount of miles on them, but you should still be able to get a good deal on one. The 2015 Plug-in Cayenne S E-Hybrid was named the Best Resale Value by Kelley Blue Book.

Hands-free liftgate, heads-up display, and safety technology like night vision and lane-keeping assist are just a few of the new features.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

#4 Best Year: 2017 Porsche Cayenne (4.34 Rating)

Source: evo.co.uk

It was named one of Kelley Blue Book’s 10 Best Luxury SUVs. It is a medium premium SUV. Hence JD Power gave it their APPEAL award. The 2017 Porsche Cayenne was named the best premium luxury crossover SUV by AutoPacific.

The 2017 Cayenne improved upon previous models in the series by taking note of their mistakes. It has improved infotainment system reliability and features like Apple CarPlay is commonplace.

The 2017 model year is still quite recent, so plenty of them are for sale, and many have little mileage. Checking the service records can guarantee there have been no major problems.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

#3 Best Year: 2022 Porsche Cayenne (4.35 Rating)

Source: The car connection

The 2022 Cayenne offers a passionately dynamic layout. Both the Cayenne and the Cayenne Coup are available, so you may pick the body style that best suits your driving preferences.

The seamless integration of Spotify in the 2022 Cayenne makes connecting various devices and listening to music possible. The standard 2022 Cayenne can go from 0-60 mph in 5.6 seconds thanks to its 335-horsepower turbocharged V6 engine.

It’s one of the best luxury SUVs, as J.D. Power ranked the 2022 Cayenne as the third-best Upper Midsize Premium SUV.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

#2 Best Year: 2023 Porsche Cayenne (4.35 Rating)

Source: Car and drive

Even if the 2023 Cayenne has an excellent track record, the fact that there have been no recalls is a major benefit. Even the most popular models cannot make that assertion.

The 2023 Cayenne offers five potent engines to choose from, including a base model with 335 hp from its turbocharged 3.0 liter V6; an S model with 434 hp from its 2.9-liter twin-turbo V6; a GTS model with 453 hp from its twin-turbo 4.0 liter V8; and two Turbo models with 541 and 631 hp, respectively.

This vehicle also has excellent handling for a crossover SUV, a luxurious cabin, and a wide range of personalization choices. You can’t go wrong with this model.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

#1 Best Year: 2018 Porsche Cayenne (4.51 Rating)

Source: Caricos

Even compared to the most recent 2023 Cayenne, the 2018 model is clearly the best overall. Due to its unparalleled efficiency, reliability, and overall driving experience, it consistently outshines newer models.

There weren’t any substantial updates for 2018, but it still has agile handling and a bevy of powerful engines to choose from, from a standard V6 to a hybrid and all the way up to a powerful V8.

J.D. Power gives the 2018 Porsche Cayenne a predicted reliability rating of 3.5 out of 5, which is slightly above average. The 2018 Cayenne has excellent ratings and is one of the Best-used luxury midsize SUVs on the market.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

What Are The Common Problems With Porsche Cayenne?

The most common problems with Porsche Cayenne are:

  • Brake pedal issues
  • Premature brake wear
  • Heavy Gear changes in the automatic transmission
  • Powertrain issues
  • Noisy transmission
  • Crack in the fuel pump flange
  • Coolant leaks
  • Electrical faults


1. How Long Will Porsche Cayenne Lasts?

Despite its luxurious label, Porsche intended the Cayenne to be a practical daily car for trendy SUV lovers. Is it a reliable SUV, though? Cayenne SUVs can last between 150,000 and 200,000 miles with careful maintenance and care.

2. What Are The Other Alternatives To the Porsche Cayenne?

Some of the other best Porsche Cayenne alternatives are:

  • BMW X5
  • Audi Q8
  • Mercedes Benz GLE Class
  • Land Rover Range Rover Sport
  • Jaguar F-Pace

3. Porsche Cayenne Coupe Vs. Cayenne SUV: Which Is Better?

Both models function really similarly. Both designs feature an available adaptive cruise control system. The one major dissimilarity is that the sunroof comes standard on the Coupe but not on the Cayenne SUV.

The Coupe will have significantly higher and more variable fuel efficiency. The Cayenne has a higher top speed; however, the Cayenne Coupe has a higher acceleration.


Porsche is a top-tier luxury brand in general, but the Cayenne isn’t for everyone. It’s stylish, but annual maintenance costs might reach the hundreds. We expect you’ll find this data useful! It isn’t easy to pick the best year from so many possibilities, but our insight should help you narrow your choices.

You can get the latest models for yourself as they have few complaints and high reliability, except the 2021 Cayenne. Avoiding the 2004, 2003, and 2011 Porsche Cayenne is always better.

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