WATCH | The return of the mighty V8 in the new Porsche Cayenne Coupe GTS

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• Porsche has launched two new models in its Cayenne GTS line-up.
• The V8 engine makes a return on the Cayenne Turbo models.
• This is the most powerful Cayenne ever produced.
• For more motoring stories, go to Wheels24.

My younger brother started high school at the same institution I was at a few years after I had matriculated. By then, I had bought my first car, a Volkswagen Golf Mk2 GTS. A Jumbo as it is better known, but she was named 'Lucy'. It was silver, riding on 17-inch Apex rims, and low profile Continental tyres. For some reason though, my brother, who had a wild imagination even then, would tell his fellow school friends in Grade 8, that I was a gang leader of sorts and could offer them protection. And every time I pulled up to fetch him from school, his friends would be waiting to come and ask for help, afraid of the older school bullies. Although it was funny, it also broke my heart.

2020 Porsche Cayenne GTS
2020 Porsche Cayenne GTS

What on earth does this have to do with the new Porsche Cayenne Coupe GTS? Well, nothing, really. But, at the launch of the third-generation SUV recently, this car took me right back to those moments simply because of its presence. And, if I could have turned back time, this would have been the car I wished I could have rolled up in, instead of my Lucy, even if it was just to entertain them, or help their confidence and make the bullies back off thanks to the Cayenne's stance.

But let's get down to business. 

Porsche says it is augmenting its SUV line-up with the new Cayenne GTS and GTS Coupe, both with exceptional driving performance in mind. Yes, it sounds very "PR" but its seldom that a large SUV has the same dynamics as a sports car. My driving partner and I had driven the new Porsche 911 Turbo the day before so we were really not expecting to have any fun driving the Coupe GTS after such a high. But, the automaker always never seems to stop surprising you with the build and quality of their vehicles.

2020 Porsche Cayenne GTS
2020 Porsche Cayenne GTS

For the GTS models, Porsche has re-inserted the V8 heart instead of the 3.6-litre V6 bi-turbo engine from its predecessor. Its four-litre bi-turbo engine delivers an incredible 338kW and 620Nm, thus making the powerful SUV improve in all aspects. We took it around the Huguenot Pass from Paarl and it just sat on the road, swooping in those S-bends like nothing mattered.

It might not be the electric Taycan, or the extremely quick 911 Turbo, but even launch control sends you into a fit of giggles in this beast, and then you have to remind yourself, you're actually gunning it in a big and bold SUV.

Both GTS models reach zero to 100km/h in 4.5 seconds with the Sport Chrono package and have a claimed top speed of 270km/h. The automaker says a lowered performance-oriented chassis, unique design and enhanced equipment round off the new GTS package for the Cayenne.

2020 Porsche Cayenne GTS
2020 Porsche Cayenne GTS

The new Cayenne GTS and GTS Coupe is now 14kW and 20Nm more potent than its predecessor. It might seem insignificant on paper, but there's a distinct performance improvement. This is evident in the zero to100km/h sprint, which is now 0.6 seconds faster than before with the Sport Chrono package, and the top speed been increased by eight km/h. 

Probably most impressive is its efficiency despite the more significant power gains. Porsche reckons this has been achieved by the "optimally matched Tiptronic S eight-speed automatic transmission, adaptive cylinder control, direct petrol injection with central injector position and an intelligently designed thermal management system". The combined fuel consumption is rated at 11.4 to 11.2 litres/100km.

It has a specially configured sports exhaust system which delivers a lovely sonorous roar, but you have to fork out a bit extra for this. The high frequency-tuned sports exhaust system is an entirely new development. The standard exhaust system has its tailpipes located towards the outside corners of the car's rear, designed to produce a rich, sporty sound with a unique character. Definitely worth the add on.

Pricing for the GTS starts from R1 749 000 and the GTS Coupe starts from R1 839 000, and both are inclusive of a three-year Drive Plan.

Watch the video above to get a sense of the new Cayenne Coupe GTS.

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