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447kW Dakara (a what?) from Ruf

2009-03-10 07:03
Vehicle Specs
Manufacturer Ruf
Model Dakara
Engine 4.8l, twin-turbo V8
Power 447kW
Torque 890Nm
Zero To Hundred 4.7 seconds
Ruf has finally made the Cayenne look like it belongs in the Porsche product line by adding 911 headlights – at a price.

Celebrating its 70th birthday this year, Ruf is still based in the quaint village of Pfaffenhausen, in the Algäu region of Germany.

Renowned for its work on 911 turbo models – Ruf made its name with a five-speed conversion of the original 911 turbo – the company has now focused its technical expertise on the Cayenne SUV, showcasing its wares at the Geneva auto show.

Dakar what?

The result is a rather unoriginally named car, the Dakara (wonder where they got the semantic root form for that name?), which bravely attempts to at last add some proper Porsche styling heritage to the Cayenne range.

Although the comprehensive body kit adds a new front and rear (diffuser embedded) fascia, the gaping mouth grille and oddly angled rear-three quarter view remains.

Spoilers, side-skirts and those awful cut-out sections ahead of the rear headlamps are all fashioned from carbon-fibre. Little wonder Ruf wants $300 000 a piece for the Dakara...

The most striking styling modification are those 911 headlights, which look better, yet are still unable to carry the Cayenne’s unfortunately odd proportions. One can finally see why Porsche never bothered with the headlamp swop in-house - the Cayenne shape and proportions are aesthetically unsalvageable.

With the exterior modifications crafted from carbon-fibre, the Ruf Dakara’s new bonnet, side-skirts, front/rear spoilers and aft diffuser are hardly run of the mill, plastic clip-on bits of styling kit. Extensively widened wheelarches accommodate 22-inch wheels of a chunky five-spoke design.

One very-very expensive power boost

The Cayenne Turbo S 4.8l V8, producing 404kW and 750Nm in standard trim, is modified by Ruf technicians to tally new peak outputs of 447kW and 890Nm. Performance is good for a 0-100km/h time of 4.7 seconds, which is an improvement of 0.2 seconds on the standard Cayenne Turbo S…

Interior embellishments render something akin to a late 1990s rave bar, with aluminium insets everywhere and blue backlighting providing a rather odd ambience.

Technology fetishists are well catered for though, with a premium multimedia system featuring CD/DVD playability, wireless internet, integrated TV screen and 1 500watts worth of sound quality.

If you’ve always yearned for a Cayenne with a more authentic, 911-inspired look, and don’t mind paying a $200 000 premium for only 43kW of extra performance, the Ruf Dakara should be at the top of your nearly-impossible-to-justify goodies shopping list.


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