2016 Porsche Cayenne Custom Headlights


The 2015-2017 Porsche Cayenne is a beautiful car.  But the headlights are fully exposed to the sun on the top of the vehicle and therefore susceptible to premature wear and fading from exposure to UV from the sun.  This means that the outer lens often degrades and looks terrible making the entire vehicle look old and worn out.  This can be remedied by lens restoration services (shown here below) or lens replacement services (what I will exclusively provide moving forward).  These headlights are also notorious for leaking water as the cold sealant that Porsche uses on these headlights becomes brittle.  When performing any of these remedial services, opening the headlight and removing the OEM sealant is necessary.  And if I’m going to spend all that effort to open the headlight, I’m going to do some cool modifications while I’m in there!  In the case of this particular build, we did some beautiful gloss black paint work and a lot of LED and HID bulb upgrades.


First, we start with an unmodified assembly.  Here you can see it with the outer lens on and off.  In this case, the outer lens was in decent condition as the car was garage kept.


Lots of chrome and silver accents from the factory.  The client wanted a full blackout.  But even with such a simple request, there are still a few fun variables to play with.  The first decision was in regard to what I dubbed the “X-Factor” trim pieces.  The high beam reflector and the bixenon projector assemblies both had a design element that was originally chrome.  When I stripped away the chrome, it created a cool effect that would alter the DRL appearance but still maintain design consistency.  We ran with it.


To help aid with the remote design process with the client, I completely disassembled the headlight to all of its components and sent him this picture so we could go through it piece by piece.  There are a LOT of pieces to this particular headlight assembly.  And to do a proper paint job for this build, all of the pieces need to be prepared and painted separately.  This photo also allowed us to easily go over each bulb and discuss upgrade potential.

2016 Porsche Cayenne Custom Headlight Restoration


So then I painted all of the interior components a gloss black.  For this build, I did a technique called a “two tone gloss black” which basically means that the few components that are already gloss black plastic are left alone and it provides a bit of distinguishing lines within the assembly.  All paint is automotive grade base coat clear coat, no rattle cans allowed here.  The result was absolutely gorgeous.


You may notice from these pictures that I also upgraded all of the bulbs in this assembly.  Easier said than done, to be honest, as Porsche employs propriety bulb holding brackets.  In the dedicated high beam location, I utilized the GTR Ultra 2.0 LED bulb set.  For the side illumination bulb replacement, I used the GTR CSP Mini LED bulb set.  For the standard low beam projector, I upgraded to the Philips XV2 Xtreme Vision D3S HID bulb set.


Now it came time to restore the outer lenses.  I did a thorough cleaning and polishing of the inside of the lenses and then resealed the headlights with a serviceable butyl sealant.  The exterior of the lenses was sanded to remove imperfections and promote adhesion of the clear coat.  Here is where I’d like to make an important distinction: all of these outer lens restoration services take significant time and thus significant cost.  It is more cost effective to replace the entire lens any time the lens is available from an aftermarket supplier.  And that will yield an even better result since the lens will be brand new!  For this set, we opted for a restoration since the lenses were in such great starting condition.  But in retrospect, from a cost and quality standpoint, it would still have made more sense to just do new lenses.  Lessons learned, growth achieved, from here on out: lens replacement services are the new norm!


And one more final glorious completed picture to wrap up this 2016 Porsche Cayenne Diesel headlight build for an amazing client:

2016 Porsche Cayenne Custom Headlight Tampa


Thanks for reading!  -13-

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