The Porsche name is often associated with the 911. But if there is one vehicle that saved the brand from a financial crisis, it's the Cayenne – Porsche’s original SUV.
Back in the 90s, Porsche wasn’t doing too well. According to the German marque, losses totaled to around 240 million Deutschmarks by the end of 1992. For the brand to survive, Porsche had to adapt. At first, they launched the Boxster and the Cayman twins. But what ultimately turned things around for the company was its first-ever SUV.
Launched in 2002, the Cayenne was quite controversial at first because, well, a Porsche SUV didn’t seem right at the time. Its sales figures told a different story though. The brand’s original SUV quickly became a success, and according to Porsche, even “helped pull the company out of a crisis”.
To give an idea of how successful the SUV is, it took less than 20 years for Porsche to build its one-millionth Cayenne. Meanwhile, the 911 took nearly 50 years as the company only celebrated the one-millionth 911 last 2017, a model that was launched in 1963. The company’s sales figures also speak for the Cayenne’s success. According to Porsche, the SUV overtook 911 sales in the 2007/2008 fiscal year by almost 50,000 units.
Unlike the one-millionth 911, however, Porsche isn’t parading the one-millionth Cayenne around the world. It’s not even going to their museum to become immortalized. Instead, the one-millionth unit you see here is a standard Cayenne GTS finished in Carmine Red and was delivered to a German customer.
Three-generations on, and the SUV continues to be a success today. To keep up with trends, Porsche also launched a new variant of the SUV – the Cayenne Coupe – taking on the new SUV-Coupe segment. With the growing demand for SUVs around the world, it might not take long before Porsche sells another million Cayenne models globally.