911 Porsche World - - News And Views -

For­get air-cooled or wa­ter-cooled. Don’t worry about com­pul­sory tur­bos or the great­man­ual ver­sus PDK de­bate. All of those con­tro­ver­sies are pos­i­tively pif­fling com­pared to the­mon­u­men­tal up­heaval Porsche will ex­pe­ri­ence in the next five to 10 years.

We’ve re­ported pre­vi­ously on Porsche plans to launch its first all-elec­tric car, a pro­duc­tion ver­sion of the­mis­sion E con­cept. This­month comes firm­news that Porsche is dou­bling down on­mis­sion E by dou­bling up on its plans to in­vest in elec­tri­fi­ca­tion to the to­tal tune of a cool six bil­lions eu­ros. We now also learn that Porsche is also said to be con­sid­er­ing the no­tion of not re­plac­ing the 718 Boxster and Cay­man twins at the end of the cur­rent cy­cle.

All this is tak­ing place against the back­drop of the Vwe­mis­sions scan­dal, the prospect of­much tougher real-world emis­sions tests and the ad­vent of driver­less car tech­nol­ogy. In short, the en­tire auto in­dus­try is in a state of un­prece­dented flux as prod­uct plan­ners at­tempt to di­vine which way the­mar­ket will turn and how fast tech­nolo­gies will de­velop.

In­deed Porsche has re­cently been caught a lit­tle flat footed by un­ex­pected de­mand for the hy­brid ver­sions of its new Panam­era. Porsche’s bat­tery sup­plier is strug­gling to keep up with the in­flux of or­ders lead­ing to longer de­liv­ery times of cus­tomer cars of three to four­months. That sur­prise suc­cess, not to­men­tion knowl­edge of the raft of new elec­tric cars planned by sis­ter com­pa­nies in the Vw­group and com­pet­ing brands like BMW, Mer­cedes and Jaguar Land Rover, is no doubt im­pli­cated in Porsche’s de­ci­sion to dra­mat­i­cally up its in­vest­ment in elec­tro­mo­bil­ity.

But the­main take­away fro­mall of this is that what youmight call en­thu­si­ast con­cerns – for in­stance, whether the next GT3 has aman­ual gearbox or tur­bocharg­ing or the com­par­i­son be­tween the 718’s flat four and the Cayster’s old flat six – look rather quaint in the con­text of the huge up­heaval and mon­u­men­tal in­vest­ment and tech­ni­cal ef­fort Porsche will be putting in over the com­ing years. Odds are, a decade from­now Porsche’s prod­uct port­fo­lio will be vir­tu­ally un­recog­nis­able.

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