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September 21, 2009

GERMANY: Porsche eyes new models to boost volume

Porsche could sell 150,000 cars a year in the medium to long term but new models would be needed to achieve this goal, the head of its core sports car business told a Sunday newspaper.

Porsche could sell 150,000 cars a year in the medium to long term but new models would be needed to achieve this goal, the head of its core sports car business told a Sunday newspaper.

“If the world economy picks up again we can well imagine unit sales of 150,000 Porsche cars per year,” chief executive Michael Macht told Welt am Sonntag.

“But we won’t achieve this with the four models that are existing today. Otherwise, we would have to significantly increase the number of cars of the current models. And then we would not be exclusive anymore. Therefore we have to think about new vehicles.”

Porscheā€™s current line is the long-running 911 sports coupe, the Boxster convertible and its Cayman coupe variant, the Cayenne SUV and the new Panamera sedan.

Preliminary results showed unit sales dipped 24% to about 75,200 vehicles in the full fiscal year to the end of last July.

Macht said that the company was working “intensively” on an electrically powered sports car but it would be some time until it was ready for sale “with a reasonable range, achieving the same handling characteristics of a [vehicle with a] petrol engine”.

Asked if  that would ever happen, Macht was quoted as saying: “I could imagine that we will drive the first vehicles in as soon as five to 10 years.”

Macht, who took over as Porsche AG CEO from Wendelin Wiedeking in July, added:”I am standing for integration instead of confrontation. This does not mean that my predecessor was the exact opposite. He very much could integrate, otherwise he would not have been that successful over so many years.”

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