Porsche announced plans to set up a research and development centre in Shanghai as it wants to design products that better match Chinese demand.

The automaker said the new R&D facility, scheduled to open in 2022, would pull together the capability and resources of various existing departments, including Porsche Engineering China, Porsche Digital China and Porsche China Product Management Department.

Porsche said the facility would integrate local technology into its products and its internal global innovation strategy. Areas of initial focus will be connectivity, autonomous driving and digitalisation.

The automaker’s executive board chairman Oliver Blume said in a statement: “The Chinese automotive market is very dynamic and customer preferences are highly specific. We want to meet these demands the best way possible.”

Porsche said the centre would test, verify and ensure onboard systems and equipment meet the regulatory standards for entry into China.

China has been the largest market for Porsche for the past six years with sales rising by 23% to 48,654 units in the first half of 2021.

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Detlev von Platen, head of sales and marketing, said: “The importance of the Chinese market is increasing, not only in terms of size and volume but especially in terms to trendsetting technology. China is increasingly becoming a place of inspiration for us with regard to technology and innovations.”