Deep Dive: Porsche takes control of full-size car development at VW Group

One of the cornerstones of MSB is a new family of engines. In the past, Ingolstadt was in charge of almost all V-engines. In the future, however, VW Group's petrol-fed V-6s and V-8s will likely be developed by Porsche. The new lineup expected to come onstream in 2012/13, in sync with the face-lifted Panamera and Cayenne, is set to replace the normally aspirated units with turbocharged ones:

  • 3.0-liter turbo V-6; 420 hp and 415 lb-ft of torque. Supersedes the current V-8.
  • 3.6-liter V-6; 500 hp and 500 lb-ft. Replaces current turbo V-8.
  • 4.8-liter turbo V-8; 600 hp and 590 lb-ft. New top-of-the-line engine.

The other brands using the MSB architecture will get their own versions of these powerplants. How different will they be? Insiders predict unique turbocharging applications, intake and exhaust systems, combustion principles, displacements and torque characteristics. For instance, Audi should for the next A8 obtain an array of conceived-to-order petrol units featuring plenty of low-end grunt, staggered boost action for ultrasmooth power delivery, and tweaked fuel injection for added refinement and reduced noise.

In a peacemaking move, Porsche has handed over all engineering work that's not directly related to sports cars and large sedans to Audi. This concerns in particular the next Cayenne, which will again be twinned with Q7/Touareg. The basic elements come in two sizes: large for Cayenne and friends, compact for Q5 and Cajun (which, by the way, will definitely also appear in two-door form). To get weight out, Audi plans to switch from a steel body to an aluminum structure, which should cut curb weight by some 900 pounds. While the turbo-diesel V-12 will bite the dust (it fails to meet future emissions standards), the V-8 TDI will eventually put in an appearance in the Cayenne.

3 of 3
Pich knows the engineering prowess of Porsche; after all he was a big part of it way back when. My only concern is whether the focus of Porsche Engineering will become too diluted in intent when it comes time to build what they in the past have done best. Having driven the Panamera I certainly think that they're more than capable, but if they're spread thin across Bugatti, Bentley and Audi, will that vision remain intact for the Porsche brand? Should prove interesting, if anything.
Edward A. Sanchez
This is actually excellent news, IMHO. Porsche is good at making (relatively) lightweight, agile cars for their respective class. Full-size sedans are one segment that could use that treatment most.

New Car Research

our instagram

get Automobile Magazine

Subscribe to the magazine and save up to 84% off the newsstand price


new cars

Read Related Articles