Porsche confirms first electric two-seater will be a 718, Not 911

Executives confirmed on a far-reaching video call with reporters.
Image: Bloomberg

The first two-seat electric Porsche will be a 718, executives confirmed on a far-reaching video call with reporters.

Drivers can also expect a hybrid version of the Porsche 911, Oliver Blume, Porsche AG’s chief executive officer, said Thursday. But he did not specify when production—which would use on-board rather than plug-in hybrid technology—would begin. The question of how many variants of the 911 might get the hybrid treatment was also not answered.

The 911, Porsche’s 58-year-old crown jewel, includes wide-ranging variants, from the entry-level $101 200 Carrera to high-performance Turbo S versions that cost more than $200 000.

The news comes after Volkswagen AG said February 22 that it’s preparing an initial public offering of Porsche, its most profitable asset, to help fund production of additional electric vehicles. Blume and Porsche Chief Financial Officer Lutz Meschke have steadfastly refused to comment on the possible listing, which could value the company as high as €90 billion ($99.7 billion), according to Bloomberg Intelligence. The IPO could happen in the second half of this year.

A 2022 Porsche Taycan GTS Sport Turismo on display ahead of the Los Angeles Auto Show in Los Angeles on November 18, 2021. Photographer: Bing Guan/Bloomberg

Porsche has hinted at an electric 718 Boxster/Cayman-style vehicle since it unveiled the Mission R at the Munich auto show last year, but this was the first time executives have confirmed speculation about a sporty new EV, which will be its third electric model. Porsche started delivering the Taycan electric sedan in 2020, and an all-electric Macan is expected by 2023.

By 2025, half of all new Porsches sold will be all-electric or plug-in hybrids, Blume said. By 2030, 80% of all Porsches will be fully electric, he said. In 2021, less than 40% of all new Porsches delivered in Europe were plug-in hybrid or fully electric.

Sales of the Taycan, which starts at $82,700, have soared. Last year, the company delivered 41 296 globally, exceeding sales of the legendary 911, which reached a record 38 464 units.

All told, Porsche delivered 301 915 vehicles to customers in 2021, an 11% jump from the 272,162 delivered in 2020 and the first time it has surpassed the 300 000 mark.

Deliveries increased in all global sales regions in 2021, led by China with more than 95 000 deliveries, up 7.5% from 2020. Porsche also grew rapidly in the US, where sales rose 22% to more than 70 000 units. In Germany, Porsche increased deliveries by 9.2% to almost 29 000 units.

“We see that 2021 has made clear that we are weather-proof, even in stormy times,” Blume said. “We have achieved strong results. This has put us in a first-class position for the future.”

Still, executives said US customers should expect significant delays across all Porsche’s product lines in the coming months because of unexpected obstacles. In February, hundreds of Porsche cars were destroyed when a ship burned and sank in the Atlantic Ocean. The company has also struggled to source parts from  multiple suppliers in Ukraine since Russia’s invasion.

“All model lines will be affected in the next coming months,” Meschke said.

© 2022 Bloomberg

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