Blog: VW to shake Porsche?
Dave Leggett | 3 September 2009
How far will Volkswagen go to let Porsche know that it is in charge, that Porsche is another brand in a big VW Group stable and that things are going to be a little different now that Wiedeking is gone? Will future product plans be impacted? I have heard a whisper (there's also a report in Car magazine) that certain people at VW want to see Porsche going back to its sportscar roots and moving away from the new market segments that Wiedeking has courted with products like the Cayenne and Panamera.
Piech is said to have never liked the Cayenne and some journalists are saying that the Panamera is plain ugly. Hmm. I look forward to seeing one on the road. But even if Piech is not entirely happy with such vehicles, would future replacements be canned? I doubt it. They - and potential additional models - will account for substantial revenue and unit growth for Porsche that Winterkorn has been talking about. Has the Cayenne damaged the Porsche brand? Not really. The purists still have plenty of product to get excited about and the Cayenne sells to another group of customers, especially in the US, who like the idea of a premium SUV with a Porsche badge. They're not exactly commonplace on the roads.
But a Porsche 'premium small car' like the one Aston Martin is doing with Toyota? If there is something like that penciled in to a future product map, it might well get a line through it. Or be sent back to the drawing board to be turned into an entry-level Porsche that is more obviously in the premium sports tradition.
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