There’s lots rid­ing on elec­tric ‘young horse’

FU­TURE MOD­ELS/ Porsche has named its Mis­sion E elec­tric sports car the Tay­can, writes Mark Smyth

Business Day - Motor News - - MOTOR NEWS -

Porsche is tak­ing its elec­tri­fi­ca­tion strat­egy se­ri­ously, even — as you will see else­where on this page — in­vest­ing in a ri­val in the elec­tric sports car field.

It has al­ready elec­tri­fied some mod­els, mainly the Panam­era and Cayenne hy­brids, but in the next few years it will be in­creas­ing its of­fer­ings.

While the com­pany has not of­fi­cially con­firmed it, in­sid­ers have told us that there will be hy­brid ver­sions of the next gen­er­a­tion 911, which is ex­pected to make its de­but later this year.

In to­tal it is in­vest­ing €6bn by 2022, sig­nif­i­cantly more than it orig­i­nally planned, as it adapts to the rapid changes cur­rently tak­ing place in the in­dus­try.

The halo prod­uct for the Stuttgart man­u­fac­turer’s elec­tri­fi­ca­tion era is the Mis­sion E, a fully elec­tric sports car due to de­but in pro­duc­tion form in 2019 and which alone re­quires more than €500m. The com­pany is build­ing a new pro­duc­tion fa­cil­ity for it at Zuf­fen­hausen that will cre­ate 1,200 jobs.

It has been a few years since the con­cept first de­buted but the com­pany used its 70th an­niver­sary cel­e­bra­tions to fi­nally give a real name to the Mis­sion E, which will be­come the Tay­can. The puns started im­me­di­ately of course, but the ori­en­tal name trans­lates into “lively young horse”. It’s a play on the orig­i­nal Porsche logo which has fea­tured a horse since 1952.

“Our new elec­tric sports car is strong and de­pend­able; it’s a ve­hi­cle that can con­sis­tently cover long dis­tances and that epit­o­mises free­dom,” explains Oliver Blume, chair­man of the ex­ec­u­tive board of Porsche.

There is a great deal rid­ing on the Tay­can and Porsche has made some strong claims about its per­for­mance since the con­cept de­buted. In to­tal it will have 440kW and will ac­cel­er­ate to 100km/h in less than 3.5 sec­onds and to 200km/h in less than 12 sec­onds.

When it was first re­vealed at the 2015 Frank­furt Mo­tor Show, the com­pany’s claims that it will be ca­pa­ble of achiev­ing a range of more than 500km and charg­ing for 100km in just four min­utes seemed a bit far-fetched. Just a few years later and the tech­nol­ogy is mov­ing at such a rapid pace that it now seems re­al­is­tic, at least where in­fra­struc­ture al­lows.

That is not to say that you will be able to do 500km around Kyalami flat out be­fore charg­ing and there will be a dif­fer­ence be­tween claimed and real world. But if Porsche wants to sell the Tay­can in the tens of thou­sands a year vol­umes as it has pre­vi­ously said then it will need to de­liver on its prom­ises.

The ques­tion then will be whether the Tay­can takes over from the 911. The 911 will al­ways be the icon and it is the one Porsche is most pro­tec­tive of, with Blume telling Mo­tor News in 2016 “it will al­ways be Porsche’s poster child. The tra­di­tion of Porsche is the 911. There can be, in the fu­ture, co-ex­is­tence be­tween Mis­sion E and 911.”

Porsche CEO Oliver Blume re­veals the Tay­can name for the Mis­sion E elec­tric sports car.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa

© PressReader. All rights reserved.