Porsche is set to launch its first-ever diesel model in the U.S., confirming this week that its Cayenne Diesel luxury SUV will be offered to U.S. customers in the second half of the year.

Though we already knew the vehicle was coming, this is the first time that Porsche has confirmed the news.

Along with the diesel announcement, Porsche also reiterated plans to launch the smaller Cajun SUV in 2013 and if sales of the Cayenne Diesel prove popular we could see the Cajun offer a diesel option too.

The Cayenne Diesel is expected to account for roughly 15 percent of Porsche’s Cayenne sales in the U.S. It will supplement the Cayenne S Hybrid which currently accounts for about 12 percent of the SUV's local sales.

Expect the same 245-horsepower 3.0-liter V-6 turbodiesel engine found in Cayenne Diesels sold overseas to be fitted to local versions. This setup is good for a fuel economy of 32.7 mpg on the slightly less conservative European combined cycle and 0-60 mph times of around 7.6 seconds.

By comparison, the Cayenne S Hybrid, which combines a 333-horsepower supercharged V-6 and 47-horsepower electric motor, takes only 6.1 seconds to cover the same sprint though only returns a fuel economy of 21 mpg combined.

The Cayenne remains Porsche’s top-selling model, with 12,978 units finding a home in the U.S. in 2011 alone--a 55.6 percent increase on 2010 sales figures. With the announcement of the new Cayenne Diesel, expect sales numbers to increase even more in the coming year.

Other new Porsche’s hitting showrooms this year include the new 2012 911 Cabriolet, 2013 Panamera GTS and the next-generation Boxster.

For full details on the complete Porsche Cayenne range, click here.

2011 Porsche Cayenne S

2011 Porsche Cayenne S