Skip advert
Advertisement

Ill-timed snowfall and a 150mph Porsche Cayenne autobahn run – evo Archive

This Boxster drive in Austria had a much bigger Porsche journey behind it

Boxster in Austria

Reading about Adam driving a new mid-engined Porsche to the top of a hill, made me think about driving a Cayenne Turbo at 150mph through the night on the way from Stuttgart to Calais. Let me explain.

Back in early 2009 Porsche offered evo the chance to drive a brand new 987.2 Boxster S. The car was in Germany, but I had a cunning plan. There was a good bit of road going up a hill just outside Salzburg with Porsche history attached. In 1958 an ancestor of the Boxster – an original 718 with RS in its name (and a K) – had won the Gaisberg Hill Climb with Wolfgang ‘Taffy’ von Trips at the wheel. And I thought it would be nifty to follow in its wheel tracks.

Advertisement - Article continues below

Flights were booked, Kenny P’s cameras were packed and then, the day before we were due in Stuttgart, it snowed. A lot. Enough to cancel our flights and leave then editor Metcalfe staring down the barrel of empty pages in a magazine that was supposed to go to print at the end of the week. Being young and enthusiastic I suggested that we simply drive out to Germany and, being between long-termers, I asked Porsche if there was a car we could borrow.

Skip advert
Advertisement
Advertisement - Article continues below

> Mini Cooper sleeping and a Ferrari 250 LM – evo Archive

Which is how we came to motor down to Stuttgart airport through the night in 494bhp of black Cayenne Turbo. I seem to remember we arrived at about 6am, checked into the Mövenpick hotel, requested a late check out and then had a couple of hours’ sleep before going to pick up the Boxster S (on winter tyres, thankfully) and drive to snowy Salzburg a further four hours away. I’m not sure why we left the Cayenne in Stuttgart, but we did. 

Anyway, we convinced a grumpy man to let us pay him money to sleep in an otherwise deserted chalet, woke up to bright blue skies over crisp white snow and spent an idyllic day driving around and taking photographs. The hill climb was beautiful, the Boxster S handled sublimely and, reading the article again today, I didn’t even gripe too much about the appearance of a PDK ’box in the Boxster (it had those horrible push/pull buttons on the wheel).  

Advertisement - Article continues below

Then it was time to return, to get home to process photos and write words. We had schnitzel and strudel for supper in the Walserberg services on the German/Austrian border, then I pushed on for Zuffenhausen. We switched Porsches around midnight and I asked Kenny if he could drive for a bit, but about an hour later he declared he was too tired, so we swapped again. 

Skip advert
Advertisement
Advertisement - Article continues below

And then, with a snoring P in the passenger seat, I set about getting us to Calais. The Turbo was absolutely mighty on the deserted autobahns, thundering through the dead of night, deep into three figures. I loved it. I’d borrowed my father’s TomTom and its simple graphics were the perfect co-driver as I lined up bend after sweeping bend. Two-point-three tons hunkered down and hurtling along with the soundtrack of its V8 chasing the beams of its headlights across Europe felt incredibly impressive.

Then there was the other soundtrack. Not Kenny, but Michael. For reasons now lost in the mists of 13 years, the only CD we had was In Time: The Best of REM. By the third listening I was pretty envious of the sidewinder and I was sure I was going to be a ‘Daysleeper’ when I got home. I’m not sure I’ve been able to listen to ‘Everybody Hurts’ since, and despite hours of brainstorming on the way to Calais I never did work out what the people’s automatic would be. A Golf, probably. I certainly didn’t look ‘At My Most Beautiful’ after one night’s sleep in three, but issue 128 didn’t have any blank pages.

Skip advert
Advertisement

Recommended

Porsche Cayenne GTS 2024 review – the SUV that might get you out of an RS6
Porsche Cayenne GTS – front
Reviews

Porsche Cayenne GTS 2024 review – the SUV that might get you out of an RS6

The new Cayenne model offensive continues with the introduction of the GTS, the sweet-spot in the line-up.
18 Jun 2024
Porsche Cayenne review
Porsche Cayenne – front
In-depth reviews

Porsche Cayenne review

There are remnants of sporting DNA in the Porsche Cayenne, and it now has the tech and processing power to rival the very best
29 Nov 2023
The Porsche Cayenne S E-Hybrid packs 512bhp to take on BMW's X5 M60i
Porsche Cayenne S E-Hybrid – front
News

The Porsche Cayenne S E-Hybrid packs 512bhp to take on BMW's X5 M60i

Porsche has expanded the Cayenne lineup with a plug-in hybrid V6 to sit below the full-fat Turbo E-Hybrid
27 Sep 2023
New Porsche Cayenne Turbo E-Hybrid: 729bhp super-SUV unveiled
Porsche Cayenne Turbo E-Hybrid – front
News

New Porsche Cayenne Turbo E-Hybrid: 729bhp super-SUV unveiled

With the Cayenne Turbo GT axed in the UK, the new Turbo E-Hybrid takes the stage as Porsche’s flagship SUV
29 Aug 2023
Skip advert
Advertisement

Most Popular

Fast Ford heaven: a tour of the ultimate Ford garage
Ford Heritage Collection tour
Features

Fast Ford heaven: a tour of the ultimate Ford garage

Who doesn’t love a fast Ford? Prepare for a nostalgia overload as we get a guided tour of Ford UK’s magnificent, newly rehomed Heritage Collection
7 Jul 2024
Speed limiters are now mandatory, but you can turn them off
80mph motorway speed limit
News

Speed limiters are now mandatory, but you can turn them off

The use of mandatory speed limiters on all new cars was approved by the European Parliament in 2019, and they're now coming into force
5 Jul 2024
Ford Focus ST Track Pack v Honda Civic Type R: sharpened Focus tackles the hot hatch king
Ford Focus ST Track Pack v Honda Civic Type R
Group tests

Ford Focus ST Track Pack v Honda Civic Type R: sharpened Focus tackles the hot hatch king

The Civic Type R has so far seen off all challengers, but will it meet its match in the trackday-friendly Focus ST?
8 Jul 2024