Porsche Cayenne Tuning

Tuning the Porsche Cayenne and best Cayenne performance parts.

We examine at Cayenne tuning and outline the ultimate modifications. Porsche Cayennes are stunningly practical with loads of performance on tap, and with a few sensible performance parts you can dramatically improve your driving experience.

We have seen some awesome Cayenne tuning projects and there seems to be quite a loyal fan base of Cayenne owners. With the right mods your Cayenne can be transformed into a stunning project. Don't waste money, do your homework and follow our unbiased guides to each performance upgrade to avoid wasting money.

There are also some fantastic professional conversions out there, but we have to recommend the satisfaction of doing it yourself.

Tuning tips and articles

Engine tuning Transmission tuning Care care Intake & exhaust mods Improve handling Forums


Many Cayenne owners uprate the handling of their cars as a priority, this will certainly increase your enjoyment of the car. Drop the car by 25mm and fit stiffer dampers, bigger drops will need other modifications in most instances and will totally ruin the whole point of the Cayenne.

Our aim in Cayenne engine tuning should be to increase peak power and Torque at the top end and go for a nice flat torque curve.

Keep the car looking standard and take off the badges creating a sleeper!

Smaller engines do not provide much of a return in terms of power so start with a bigger engine.

Engine swaps are a good option if you have a small engine size.


Cayenne Power mods.

These mods are usually performed by our members, decide how far you want to go before you begin.

Engine options included

Transmission options were a 6-speed automatic or 6-speed manual

Petrol engine options were the

Diesel options were also added in 2011 with 2 to choose from initially.
3.0 V6 250PS or the 4.2 V8 385 PS

Transmission options were the 6-Speed ZF Manual and an
8-Speed Aisin Tiptronic S Automatic.

Getting the right mods for your planned usage of the car is a time and money saver. Stage 3 (competition) mods just don't work well on the road making the car difficult to drive.

Please watch our video which covers the 5 principles of tuning your car. Be sure to keep up with our latest YouTube content and subscribe.

Best mods for your Cayenne

  1. Brake Upgrades - Enhancing your stopping power ought to be high on your agenda.
  2. Flowing and porting the engine head - for larger gains, you will get better flow and make a more efficient engine if you do this to support your other mods.
  3. Cayenne Suspension Upgrades - Upgrading your suspension radically improves your Cayenne handling Coilovers and Bushings are the usual go to mods
  4. Forced induction upgrades - forced induction is the most dramatic method to increase your intakes air supply, this means you are able to use more fuel and make better power figures. Typically one of the most expensive modifications it does provide the largest gains.
  5. ECU Tunes - A tune/remap ensures the most advantage in terms of cost, replacement ECUs, and piggyback ECUs are all alternatives.
  6. Lighter flywheels - a lighter flywheel will enhance the engines ability to rev freely. But not always a great mod for all Cayenne engines.
  7. Intake Mods and Sports Exhausts - Please be warned on their own these mods will NOT ADD TORQUE on most cars, but they permit you to release power after other mods by minimizing the restriction.
  8. Fast road cams are generally the biggest mechanical mod upgrade, but TorqueCars recommend they be setup by someone qualified to set them up and some cams are hard to find but you might have a local firm to regrind a stock camshaft for you.

Cayenne Tuning Stages

Typical stage 1 mods often include:
Remap,Suspension upgrade (drop 30-40mm),Panel air filter,Alloy wheels,Sports exhaust,Lighter flywheel.

Typical stage 2 mods often include:
Ported and polished head,Fast road cam,Fuel injector & fuel pump upgrades,Power clutch,.

Typical stage 3 mods often include:
Sports gearbox,Competition cam,Internal engine upgrades (pistons/head/valves),Adding or upgrading forced induction (turbo/supercharger),Engine balancing.

Peak power is all well and good but for a daily driven car you need a long torque band and perhaps extending the rev range. In this article we shall give a limited introduction to the best performance parts for your car, but we'd encourage you to spend some time on the site looking into the details of each type of performance mod.One of the best mechanical mods you can do on your NA (naturally aspirated) engine is to fit a fast road cam .

The intake and exhaust flow play a large part in your cars power band, but be careful here, getting this wrong can upset the idle and make the car difficult to drive in traffic. You'd need to follow a cam upgrade with other mods and finish with a tune/remap to fully realize your gains.

Don't forget to uprate the fuelling when you are increasing the power - it makes the car more thirsty. Frequently power losses, and erratic idling after mods are done can usually be traced to timing or fuel delivery issues.Uprated injectors will enable you to supply sufficient fuel to the engine. If you are increasing your fuelling with bigger injectors you will also need to get a bigger fuel pump to supply it.

Cayenne Intake and Exhaust Tuning.

The next area for modification is the intake and exhaust. Contrary to popular belief there is often very little if any power gain to be had by fitting an induction kit, they only work well and are recommended after you increase the engines power to the point where the standard air intake box cannot cope!

Derestricting the flow of air into the engine is the primary part of car tuners so get a freer flowing air filter if you find that the car is running lean only if you find the car is running lean. Induction kits can sound fun but due to the warm air in the engine bay they will not really increase power and more often than not rob you of power on most cars.

Sports exhausts generally help improve air flow through the engine but avoid an exhaust that is too wide or you could very well end up with a reduced flow rate. So generally speaking, keep to twin 1.5 to 2.5 inch exhausts as a rule of thumb.

Getting the head flowed (porting and polishing) will allow you to maximize your air/fuel charge and should give a nice spike in the torque output. Leave this to a professional though with a proper flow bench and machine tools Your clutch can lose you loads of power as the power goes up if it starts to complain and the standard clutches are only ever good for power gains of up to 30%.

Fit a power clutch to avoid power leak through the transmission. NA (naturally aspirated) engines do not achieve big power gains if you tune/remap them, unless you have done extensive modifications. With turbocharged engines this is another story. A tuned/remapped turbo will give large power gains and take full advantage of the strength of the block.

We've also seen some tuners playing with twin charging applications and making some very high power figures.

Despite the large cost involved adding forced induction to a NA (naturally aspirated) engine will give large power gains. It is generally simpler to bolt on a supercharger than it is to fit a working turbo. Turbos give boost in increasing proportion to rising engine speed and this can make mapping difficult. It is more straightforward to map a supercharger because the boost is correlating to engine speed on a linear curve. Decreasing the engines compression ratio will allow you to add forced induction, water injection may also help prevent detonation. Swapping in the turbo engine is usually cheaper and more reliable than doing a turbo conversion on these.

Cayenne Handling/Suspension upgrades

Handling modifications are often a priority for the Cayenne. We would go to a maximum drop of 27 - 44 on most models. You risk grounding out if you go lower than this.

Upgrades to the Cayenne's suspension and handling

When it comes to tuning your Cayenne, one of the most often cited reasons is to better its handling. However, we regularly encounter the same mistakes.

Good Quality coilovers allow you to adjust the suspension height and this allows you to setup your cars handling to suit your driving style.

One of the most popular reasons for modifying your Cayenne suspension is to improve its handling. However, we see the same errors repeated repeated again and over.

Improvements to the bushings

What factors should you consider when setting up and selecting your bushes if your Cayenne is also used as a daily driver?

Bushings, which are rubber mounts, allow the Cayenne's suspension components to be affixed to the car's chassis. The rubber ones will degrade as they age.

Replacement OEM rubber bushings may have a major impact on the performance of your vehicle.

It's probable that the ride may be a touch rougher because of the stronger polyurethane bushings but they'll last longer and maintain tighter handling.

Increased vibration and play may also accelerate the depreciation in other suspension components.

With a new set of polyeyurothane bushes, the excessive play associated with rubber bushes may be mitigated.

Some polyeyurothane bushings are hard to locate, but most will find the primary mounts readily available in their local stores Often, custom Cayenne polyeyurothane bushes may be manufactured to your requirements.

To adequately support a diverse variety of vehicles, the "one-size-fits-all" approach is obviously a mistake as engine weights and equipment trim levels all affect the cars handling characteristics.

How low should you go on the Cayenne?

According to TorqueCars research and testing, the maximum amount of suspension drop for most road vehicles is 27 - 44 millimetres, whereas versions that come with lowered sporty suspension already have a maximum suspension drop of 20 millimetres.

The Cayenne was never designed to be slammed low, and actually doesn't look right if it is too low, but a slightly lower ride height and larger alloys should get you the look you want.

Tolerances may be greatly reduced by altering the diameter of the wheels. Lowering a vehicle, even with 19-inch wheels and stock suspension, can create several problems.

Because the Cayenne is lower, less air travels under it, which may aid in stability; nonetheless, the main goal should always be to enhance handling. It is critical to use the proper shocks when employing lower springs buying matched components as a kit.

Fully adjustable suspension allows you to fine tune the handling of you Cayenne dramatically enhancing your drive.

Adding bigger discs and better performance pads will make for greatly improved stopping. (They will brake effectively over longer periods during heavy use than stock brakes will, but grip has more of a bearing on the cars ability to stop).

Note that motorsport pads will be noisy and will need to be hot before they bite.

In every day driving the brakes are only used rarely and will not be effective so choose brake pads which work well in daily use.

Cayenne Alloy wheel upgrades.

The benefits of alloy wheels include a lower unsprung weight and better brake cooling via the extra air flow they allow. We should point out that although they can look cool on the Cayenne big alloy wheels will actually decrease your performance. The larger you go the lower your acceleration will be - this to the change in your effective final drive ratio. Due to this fact we would advise sticking to a maximum wheel size of 21 inches, although we know some of our members have gone larger than this with no problems.

My personal preference on the Cayenne for optimal road handling and comfort is the 19 inch wheels shod with 265/50 tires.

If you would like to know more, or just get some friendly advice on Tuning your car please join us in our car forums where you can discuss Cayenne options in more detail with our Cayenne owners. It would also be worth reading our unbiased Porsche tuning articles to get a full grasp of the benefits and drawbacks of each modification.

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3 Responses to “Tuning the Porsche Cayenne”

  1. Aaron says:

    Currently have a Cayenne s, very in experienced in terms of engine modifications. Exactly the article I was looking for. Straight forward, organized, easy to understand. Thank you, great job!

  2. Roger Pritchard says:

    I am just interested in getting more noise out of my 2018 cayenne Turbo. It has sports exhaust, but I barely notice the difference.

  3. TorqueCars says:

    The sound deadening in the floor and body panels on these is phenomenal, even with an open exhaust you won’t hear that much inside the cabin. An induction kit will make a nice roar sound, again you won’t get much benefit from it inside the car unless you wind down the window. Taking out the sound deadening will allow you to hear the exhaust note etc, but you’ll probably hate the extra road noise you get.

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