Do my ears de­ceive me?

This diesel SUV shat­ters the ‘‘car-like’’ cliche, with the walk to match the torque

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Prestige -

range of eight mod­els of all types). Ex­cept, maybe not.

The en­try Cayenne diesel V6 doesn’t do enough to dis­guise its com­mon­al­ity with Volk­swa­gen’s Touareg and Audi’sQ7 (same ba­sis, same engine, same Slo­vakian assem­bly line). The new one, how­ever, the Cayenne S Diesel, al­most suc­ceeds in tran­scend­ing its diesel­ness.

When we turned the key not a rat­tle was to be heard, not an agri­cul­tural call­ing card. On ac­cel­er­at­ing sharply out of the com­pound and to­ward the moun­tain passes above Graz, we just about turned around to ex­press in­dig­na­tion at the prac­ti­cal joke that had so ev­i­dently been played. The splen­did V8 thrum that blurted forth could only come from a petrol engine.

In its acous­tic re­spect alone, the S Diesel re­sem­bles a mus­cle car. It’ll make the other mums look when you queue out­side St Well-To-Do Academy.

VALUE

At $155,500 the S Diesel is some way from be­ing the top- whack Cayenne, sit­ting be­low the Cayenne Turbo and GTS. In so far as a few grand mat­ters at this end of the mar­ket, it comes in some $4K over the petrol S.

Stan­dard is air sus­pen­sion, the com­po­nent that when set to op­ti­mum comes so close to con­vey­ing the sense that this is the one SUV that truly de­serves the cliche ‘‘ car-like’’ in terms of its dy­nam­ics.

TECH­NOL­OGY

The twin turbo diesel V8 is adapted from cousin com­pany Audi then fet­tled and fi­nessed to the de­gree de­scribed above. Putting out 252kW and a moun­tain­ous 850Nm from 2000rpm, it out pulls most any petrol engine while sound­ing ev­ery bit as pretty to the ear.

Reach­ing 100km/h from stand­ing in 5.7 sec­onds isn’t bad for any 2.1 tonne mis­sile, let alone one driven by means not long ago dis­missed by this very mar­que. It’s barely more than a sec­ond slower than the 911 Car­rera 4 Cabri­o­let, with which

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