Crossover & Midsize

The Worst Porsche Cayenne Problems You Could Have Before 100,000 Miles

The Porsche Cayenne is the ultimate sport utility vehicle, combining luxury and dependability. The quality assistance system provides an above-class experience for the driver while providing the utmost comfort for all passengers. There is no better vehicle on the market today.

Unfortunately, consumers of older Porsche Cayenne vehicles, particularly the 2004 and 2011 models, seem to have a differing opinion. Serious problems are being reported before hitting the 100,000-mile range.

Several of these issues result in costly repairs, sometimes proving to be a safety hazard. These are a few of the worst and most reported problems that Porsche Cayenne owners have encountered.

Plastic coolant lines

Owners of the 2004 Cayenne Turbo 4.5L share a common complaint. The coolant lines used in this model are plastic and run down the center of the engine blocks. When the engine heats up, the plastic cannot withstand the high temperature. The pipes tend to melt, leaking coolant and creating safety concerns. The starter, located under the coolant pipes, is also affected.

Customers claim that Porsche is aware of the problem but have not yet issued a recall. Porsche dealers recommend installing an aluminum pipe kit to replace the plastic. The estimated cost for repairing this problem is $3,500 and not covered by the manufacturer.

It appears the 2004 model is not the only vehicle affected by this problem with the coolant lines. In February 2020, a class-action lawsuit was filed against Porsche. Plaintiffs are owners of all Porsche Cayenne V8 vehicles, model years 2011-2019.

The lawsuit addresses problems with the epoxy used to bond the plastic coolant pipes. Over time, the adhesive tends to degrade even under regular driving conditions. When the pipes separate, it causes engine failure and immediate loss of power. The vehicle stops operating without warning. Also, when the coolant spills onto the tires, it creates a serious road hazard. The NHTSA is investigating these claims. 

A dead engine

Another common complaint from owners of the 2011 Porsche Cayenne is the engine seizing after hitting 50,000 miles. Drivers are reporting a check engine light warning before hearing a loud noise that completely shuts down the engine.

Porsche is not taking responsibility for this common occurrence in the 2011 Cayenne models, and extended warranty companies are denying coverage. Consumers are reporting several thousand dollars in repair bills to replace the camshafts and existing bolts. In some cases, the engine must be replaced entirely. 

A transfer case issue

With a luxury vehicle comes exorbitantly high repair bills. Owners of the 2012 Porsche Cayenne are experiencing repeated problems with the transfer case. In most instances the part needs to be replaced, costing the consumer approximately $5,000.

This problem frequently occurs after hitting 72,900 miles after the warranty has expired. Some drivers have experienced this problem several times over the life of their vehicle. Porsche does not cover this common problem.

The 2020 Porsche Cayenne

Edmunds gives the new 2020 Porsche Cayenne a solid 8/10 rating. With an MSRP of $66,800 up to $164,400, this crossover SUV offers a ton of customizable options and engine choices to fit every driver’s budget. Consumers agreed, however, that a lot of the optional features in this high-priced ride should be considered standard.

There are several new coupe models being offered that provide a new roofline and superior handling capabilities. Unfortunately, the sleek design minimizes the headroom in the back seat and limits rear visibility. Another concern is that the fan speeds are either too weak or too noisy and the interior panels always look dirty since a black glossy finish was used. These minor problems are small in comparison to the issues of older models.