Performance SUV: 610-Horse Rinspeed Porsche Cayenne
The hot-rod SUV
Swiss tuning house Rinspeed unveiled its radically slammed and chopped 600-horsepower Porsche Cayenne, dubbed "Chopster," at the last Geneva auto show. While there's no word on whether it'll be available in the States, there's no question this hot-rod SUV was built with American tastes in mind.
"Our inspiration for the design of the Chopster was the image of an American football player whose outfit and athleticism stands for enormous strength and assertiveness," says Johannes Barckmann, director of EDAG, the European studio that crafted the Chopster's profile.
To give the Chopster its linebacker-mean looks, Rinspeed dropped the Cayenne's roof nearly three inches and molded in massive, bulging fender flares to house the five-spoke, 23x11.0-inch Borbet wheels. The reworked front fascia's air inlets are even bigger than the stock Porsche Cayenne Turbo's and help force additional air to the intercoolers.
Rinspeed says it's coaxed 610 horsepower and 590 pound-feet of torque out of Porsche's already formidable 4.5-liter 32-valve V-8 by applying smart tuner touches. Rinspeed completely reworked the exhaust, adding a set of high-performance catalytic converters that reduce backpressure and help clean up the truck's emissions.
Then Rinspeed added its all-new watercooled turbo intercoolers that reduce the engine's operating temperature. The turbos also were reworked for additional boost, and the Porsche's engine-management computer was reprogrammed.
The additional 160 horses and 133 pound-feet of torque called for beefed-up transmission parts and a mighty set of quad-piston calipers that clamp down on specially forged two-piece, cross-drilled rotors. The calipers are attached with titanium hardware for added strength and weight savings. Meanwhile, special stainless-steel brakelines ensure that fluid doesn't boil off when the brakes heat up.
Not surprisingly, Rinspeed claims serious performance from its Chopster, including a top speed of 181 mph and 0-to-62 mph in 4.4 seconds.
Inside, Chopster passengers are treated to seats built by Cobra Seats or Recaro. There's also a futuristic center console that spans the length of the interior, from the shiftgate to the rear seats, housing cupholders, a bank of switches, and the truck's expansive on-board entertainment system, with Blaupunkt monitors, a DVD player, and a Sony PS2 game console.
Rinspeed plans to start producing its hot-rod Chopster in the next few months. Well-heeled Europeans or Americans with European vacation homes can figure on spending about 325,000 Euros or $430,000 U.S.--but that does include shipping.