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A red 2008 Porsche Cayenne GTS in the mountains

Bring a Trailer Bargain of the Week: 2009 Porsche Cayenne GTS Manual

One of the best values in the Porsche Cayenne lineup, the GTS, once offered a manual transmission during the first-gen model's lifetime. And one of these rare performance luxury SUVs, a 2009 example, is up for grabs at an affordable price on the auction site Bring a Trailer.

As expensive as the Cayenne can get, the Porsche SUV is genuinely worth its sticker price. Understandably, though, not everyone has the coin for a brand-new Cayenne. However, used Porsche Cayennes can be affordable, capable, and surprisingly durable luxury SUVs, if you know what to look for. And at its current bargain price, the manual 2009 Porsche Cayenne GTS listed this week on Bring a Trailer is definitely worth a look.

A Porsche Cayenne GTS with a six-speed manual is a luxury SUV performance unicorn

A red 2008 Porsche Cayenne GTS in the mountains
2008 Porsche Cayenne GTS | Porsche

Understanding what makes a manual 2009 Porsche Cayenne GTS special requires a bit of brand decoding.

First, in Porsche-speak, ‘GTS’ designates a trim between the base and range-topping ones that usually bundles several performance upgrades at a lower overall price. For example, the 2022 911 Carrera GTS is mid-way between the Carrera S and Turbo in terms of speed, power, and cost, and borrows some of the latter’s parts. Speaking of the 911, while the GTS trim started there, it’s now available on every modern Porsche, including the Cayenne. And it’s arguably a better overall SUV than the more expensive Cayenne Turbo.

Secondly, the modern ‘9Y0’ Porsche Cayenne GTS doesn’t offer a manual transmission. No Cayenne has offered a manual option since the second-gen ‘958’ model. But even then, it was limited to the base VR6/V6 model. However, when Porsche facelifted the first-gen ‘957’ Cayenne into the ‘957’ version for 2008, it simultaneously introduced the GTS trim. And it, along with the base V6/VR6 model, had a six-speed manual option.

The 957 Porsche Cayenne GTS impresses on all surfaces

The rear 3/4 view of a red 2008 Porsche Cayenne GTS driving on a mountain road
2008 Porsche Cayenne GTS rear 3/4 | Porsche
2008-2010 ‘957’ Porsche Cayenne GTS
Engine4.8-liter ‘M4801’ V8
Horsepower405 hp
Torque369 lb-ft
TransmissionsSix-speed manual
Six-speed automatic
Curb weight4905 lbs
0-60 mph timeFactory: 6.1 seconds (manual), 6.5 seconds (automatic)
Car and Driver: 5.7 seconds (manual), 6.0 seconds (automatic)

Befitting its status, the ‘957’ Porsche Cayenne GTS comes standard with a few neat sporty features. Besides adding horsepower, Porsche re-tuned the adaptive shocks, lowered the ride height, and installed 21” wheels with grippier tires, MotorTrend reports. The 2008-2010 Cayenne GTS also has Turbo bumpers and wheel arches, along with an optional twin roof spoiler. Plus, it has an active performance exhaust.

In addition, the SUV has standard Alcantara-trimmed leather sport seats. And it’s the first Cayenne that offered Porsche’s adjustable air suspension with steel springs. Also, thanks to a shorter final drive ratio, the manual GTS is faster than the automatic.

Furthermore, a 2008-2010 Porsche Cayenne GTS is still a first-gen Cayenne. So, rather than AWD, it has standard 4WD with a two-speed transfer case. That means, even with its lower ride height, it’s a surprisingly capable off-roader. And even a manual-equipped Cayenne GTS can tow over 7700 pounds.

But while a 957 Porsche Cayenne GTS can still get a dirt workout, it really shines on the street. Yes, it’s still a big SUV. However, it corners and handles far better than its contemporary rivals. And it stops just as quickly as a contemporary Cadillac CTS-V, MT says. Yet despite all the suspension, tire, and wheel changes, it still rides comfortably, Car and Driver says.

There’s one with a stick up on Bring a Trailer

Speaking of suspension, the manual 2009 Porsche Cayenne GTS currently listed on Bring a Trailer has the optional air springs and roof spoiler. It also has the optional towing package, complete with a receiver hitch and towing module. And it comes well-equipped with other luxury features, too, including heated front seats, bi-xenon headlights with washers, fog lights, and a power sunroof. Plus, it has a 12-speaker audio system with Bluetooth, satellite radio capability, and GPS navigation.

Admittedly, this 2009 Porsche Cayenne GTS has almost 168,000 miles on the clock, as well as one minor accident in its history. Also, Porsche replaced the front passenger door under its corrosion warranty. And in addition to refinished wheel arches and some minor bumper paint correction, this Cayenne GTS also has wheel curb rash and some minor door-seam rust.

However, this 2009 Porsche Cayenne GTS has been well-maintained otherwise. The seller replaced the clutch, flywheel, and throw-out bearing in 2018 and changed the drivetrain fluids in 2019. They also installed an EPS driveshaft center support mount. And in 2021 they flushed the brake fluid and replaced the brake pads, brake rotors, and front-wheel bearings. They replaced the high-pressure fuel pump, valve cover gasket, starter, and coolant-pipe set screw then, too. Plus, the sale includes replacement wheels and Hella headlight covers.

You rarely see an affordable 2009 Porsche Cayenne GTS these days—and they’re genuinely reliable

As of this writing, this manual 2009 Porsche Cayenne GTS is listed at $13,250 with four days left in the auction. Given its history, a low auction price isn’t surprising. However, it’s worth noting that this SUV originally cost $81,520. Furthermore, a manual Cayenne GTS is incredibly rare. As of this writing, there’s only one listed on Autotrader, and it costs over $50,000.

Since this is a used luxury SUV, potential bidders might be nervous about maintenance costs down the road. As always, a pre-purchase inspection is recommended. However, while used Cayennes can be problematic, 957-gen ones generally aren’t. For one, the M4801 V8 is a reliable Porsche engine. And being a 2009 model, this SUV doesn’t suffer from other used Cayenne flaws like transfer case failure.

In addition, based on PCA’s information, this 2009 Porsche Cayenne GTS seller has already addressed most, if not all the potential headaches. The high-pressure fuel pump is new, the driveshaft has extra support, and the coolant pipe is pinned in place. Also, the air suspension still works—but if it fails, you can just swap in normal shocks, Hagerty notes. The only potential issues left are ignition coil and PCV valve failure, and those are common age-related problems on many cars.

Plus, know that Porsche now considers the 955 and 957 Cayenne, including the GTS, classics. So, there is plenty of support where parts and literature are concerned. And compared to later models, first-gen Cayennes are fairly DIY-friendly, Hagerty claims.

In short, this 2009 Porsche Cayenne GTS has all the hallmarks of a rare, desirable, luxurious, performance SUV at an affordable price. Told you it was worth a look.

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