[credit provider=”Wikimedia Commons” url=”http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Porsche_Cayenne_front_20081206.jpg”]
Sometime in the near future Porsche will be introducing a mid-cycle update to its Cayenne, with the updated SUV most likely being introduced for the 2015 model year.The update will include the typical retouches to the bumpers and lights, as well as some technical changes, the most significant of which will reportedly be a new plug-in hybrid option.
We’ve previously told you that the Cayenne, as well as the Panamera, will be receiving a plug-in hybrid option at some point.
Now Motor Trend is reporting that the option will be introduced in calendar year 2014 along with the SUV’s mid-cycle update.
The Panamera is expected to soon follow with a plug-in hybrid option, though its system will be used to power only the rear wheels while the Cayenne will stick with all-wheel drive.
Porsche will be calling its plug-in hybrid system an ‘e-hybrid,’ and a preview of the technology was recently showcased in the Panamera Sport Turismo concept at the 2012 Paris Auto Show.
Porsche’s e-hybrid system is an advanced development of the parallel full hybrid the automaker already implements today in the Cayenne S Hybrid and Panamera S Hybrid models.
The e-hybrid’s electric motor currently produces about 95 horsepower, and is matched to a supercharged 3.0-liter V-6 engine producing 333 horsepower on its own. Working together, the two power sources can accelerate a vehicle the size of the Cayenne from 0-60 mph in around 6.0 seconds or less.
For production, output of the electric motor may be increased slightly. This is so any vehicle featuring the system will still drive with adequate performance when in electric mode.
The electric driving range is about 18 miles in the Panamera Sport Turismo concept, though this, too, could be increased for the production models. The battery will be a lithium-ion unit with a 10 kWh or higher rating.
Using a mix of electric and gas driving, Porsche’s e-hybrid system could return a fuel economy as high as 67 mpg in either the Cayenne or Panamera.
It’s not clear how long charging of the battery will take, though Porsche is developing a fast-charger system for its upcoming 918 Spyder plug-in hybrid supercar, and a version could be offered to owners of its e-hybrid range.