2009 Porsche Cayman

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Change year or car

$50,300

starting MSRP

2009 Porsche Cayman

Key specs

Base trim shown

Overview

The good:

  • New headlights
  • Better distinguished from Boxster
  • Mileage improves
  • Dual-clutch automated-manual transmission

The bad:

  • Requires premium gas

2 trims

Starting msrp listed lowest to highest price

Wondering which trim is right for you?

Our 2009 Porsche Cayman trim comparison will help you decide.

Notable features

  • Slight exterior restyling
  • Larger base engine
  • S-level engine more powerful
  • New seven-speed transmission
  • Suspension refinements
  • LED taillights standard

2009 Porsche Cayman review: Our expert's take

By

The verdict:

Versus the competiton:


Feeling a little better about your 401(k) retirement account these days? Porsche hopes so. Luxury and performance vehicles are a tough sell during a recession, and the sooner well-heeled customers start spending money again, the happier Porsche dealers will be.

The company has invested some money in its potent mid-level sports car, the Cayman, which debuted in 2005 as a 2006 model. Four years into the model run, Porsche has freshened the 2009 Cayman with a mild restyling of the front and rear – headlights and taillights mostly – and has added power.

The base Cayman gets a larger, 2.9-liter six-cylinder engine, with 265 horsepower. And the uplevel Cayman S now has a 3.4-liter six-cylinder engine, with horsepower boosted from 295 to 320. The Cayman S still isn’t playing in the same league as the flagship 911, but it’s closer than ever.

On the Cayman S test car, that new engine is matched with a new seven-speed “Doppelkupplung” transmission – that translates to “double clutch,” meaning that while this transmission operates as an automatic, it can be shifted manually, thanks to internal clutches. It’s an effective update of the Tiptronic transmission, but whether you think it’s worth the $3,420 option price over the six-speed manual is up to you.

There is no denying, though, that this new transmission maximizes the engine’s muscle, and it feels like more than 320 horsepower, pulling strongly from a standing start, up through and well past legal limits. And fuel mileage is surprisingly good: An EPA-rated 20 mpg city, 29 mpg on the highway, thanks in part to that seventh speed that lets the engine lope along at freeway speeds.

The handling is excellent and the ride is surprisingly good. Steering is quick but not twitchy. Brakes are superb.

Inside, the Cayman S’ interior has been redesigned but remains rather Spartan. The test car didn’t have a navigation system, and it still had a small, black-and-white screen on the dashboard for the readout on the Bose sound system that looked dated in a $68,890 car.

The front seats – the Cayman, unlike the 911, makes no pretense of having a rear seat – are comfortable, but if you are taller than 6 feet, the driver’s seat may not slide back far enough.

Luggage space is surprisingly generous, thanks to a parcel shelf behind the seats and small trunks in the front and the rear. There’s plenty of room for groceries or a weekend’s worth of luggage.

Solid, fast and handsome, Porsche has made a very good car better. And since Cayman sales have dropped by more than half this year, it’s probably a good time to make a deal.

Sentinel Automotive Editor Steven Cole Smithcan be reached at 407-420-5699, scsmith@orlandosentinel.com or through his blog at Enginehead.com.

2009 Porsche Cayman S

Base price: $60,200

Price as tested: $68,890

EPA rating: 20 miles per gallon city driving, 29 mpg highway.

Details: Mid-engine, rear-wheel-drive sports coupe with a 3.4-liter, 320-horsepower six-cylinder engine and a seven-speed automatic transmission.

Consumer reviews

Rating breakdown (out of 5):
  • Comfort 4.3
  • Interior design 4.6
  • Performance 4.9
  • Value for the money 4.4
  • Exterior styling 5.0
  • Reliability 4.4

Most recent consumer reviews

5.0

Cayman S. Nearly perfect

I bought this car barely used, and have owned it for 10 years. I don't know what I'd change. Great to drive in all situations, and the cargo space makes it "practical" for all situations.

4.9

Amazing driving experiance

i owned this car for more than 7 years and still in love with it, deplorably one of the best decisions i ever made, also Porsche best years are 2008-2011 so i was luck to get a end of 2009-2010 cayman.

5.0

One of the finest Porsches ever made.

Motor Trend's Drivers Car of the Year for 2009. A safe, reliable, fast, superior handling car with room for a week's worth of luggage. Eye-catching curves in Macadamia metallic brown.

See all 11 consumer reviews

Warranty

New car and Certified Pre-Owned programs by Porsche
Certified Pre-Owned program benefits
Maximum age/mileage
13 Years/124,000 miles
Basic warranty terms
2 years/unlimited miles after new-car limited warranty expires or from the date of sale if the new vehicle limited warranty has expired
Powertrain
2 years/unlimited miles after new-car limited warranty expires or from the date of sale if the new vehicle limited warranty has expired
Dealer certification required
111-point inspection
Roadside assistance
Yes
View all cpo program details

Have questions about warranties or CPO programs?

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