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VW to slash Porsche range?

2009-09-02 07:24
Amid raids by prosecutors into the home of former Porsche boss, Wendelin Wiedeking, there is more disturbing news about VW's latest brand acquisition.

Depending on your take with regards to Porsche’s market positioning and brand values, the latest rumours from Germany could be the best news in nearly two decades, or the worst.

It’s alleged the company will not be continuing two of its erstwhile CEO’s most famous products – Cayenne and Panamera.

With the fabled sportscar producer not an independent entity anymore, its assimilation into the VW brand portfolio was always going to raise market niche saturation issues.

Why have a second generation Panamera or Cayenne when VW already does a Phaeton and Touareg, not to mention Audi’s A8 and Q7?

The absence of Porsche’s largest models in future raises sustainability concerns.

If the successor to Cayenne - or a second generation Panamera - is not forthcoming, Porsche will need to replace the sales volumes with something else.

Exactly what product niche this volume actuating product will fill is a little unclear at the moment.

Industry pundits predict Panamera will finish its seven year product lifecycle, which should give Porsche the opportunity to blood a second generation Cayenne to market.

So we'll probably see the new Cayenne next year, but don't expect another one. When Panamera finishes its lifecycle Cayenne is expected to do the same.

One of the possibilities Porsche is conjectured to explore in an attempt to shore up sales volumes in a post Cayenne/Panamera era is an entry level offering, positioned below the Boxster.

The design and engineering architecture for this baby Porsche is expected to be close to VW’s BlueSport concept.

In the meanwhile the iconic sportcar manufacturer continues to have its public reputation sullied as Stuttgart prosecutors raid the apartments of even more employees, seeking evidence of alleged insider trading.

Both dismissed (disgraced?) CEO Wiedeking and former CFO, Holger Haerter, have had their apartments searched in the last two weeks, in a corporate probe to insider trading which has rocked the German industrial landscape.


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