Everyone loves a great fish-out-of-water story, and a Porsche crawling through the rock cliffs of Moab definitely qualifies. Sure, you can modify any vehicle for extreme off-roading, but this first-generation Cayenne is factory stock save for a set of beefy all-terrain tires. The engine, transmission, suspension, and ride height are as original as you can get.
If you get a sense of deja vu from this video, there are actually two reasons for it. In August we watched a lifted Acura MDX work its way through the trails at Moab, and this exact Cayenne was part of that journey. The Porsche's owner followed up with a video of his own, and actually, this is his second 2008 Cayenne. We featured his first build last year, an overlanding Porsche with a rooftop tent and upgraded suspension.
This Cayenne has no such upgrades, but that doesn't stop its driver from tackling the toughest sections of Hell's Revenge in Utah's famous off-road park. The 6.5-mile trail includes all kinds of rock climbing challenges, and then there's Hell's Gate – a particularly challenging section that requires the driver to straddle a very narrow valley between two rock cliffs. More often associated with on-road speed, this stock Cayenne makes the difficult off-road ascent look easy. The driver certainly has something to do with that, as it takes an experienced off-roader to not panic when front or rear wheels come off the ground.
Not only did the Porsche conquer Hell's Gate and the entire Hell's Revenge trail, it did so with minimal damage. The lower portion of the front fascia received some scuffs, a fender liner was torn, and one rocker panel was scraped a bit during a descent. There wasn't any damage to the wheels, but using the sidewall of the tires during the climb at Hell's Gate caused rubber to stick to the wheels. The tires were aired down for the challenging climb, causing them to literally fold down against the wheels.
Hell's Gate is no joke, but in the right hands, neither is an old Porsche Cayenne.