Report: Porsche May Shelve Bargain Roadster Amidst Brand Worries

Here comes the baby Porsche roadster…and there it goes. Just as we were readying ourselves for the onslaught of the supposed Porsche 550 convertible, Porsche CEO Matthias Mueller reportedly says the executives in Stuttgart aren’t sold on the idea yet.

The impetus, said Automotive News, is that Porsche is increasingly worried about diluting the brand. It may take some time, Mueller said, before the idea will be fully acceptable. Mueller pointed to a possible release time, if any, when the “next generation of customers” arrive.

Unfortunately, the talk of a 550-esque car diluting the brand came after Mueller expressed his positive attitude towards the Porsche Cajun, the junior Cayenne that will share its underpinnings with the Volkswagen Tiguan.

For an automaker that got its start with small sports cars, the Cajun would seem a bit out of character, but Porsche’s lofty sales goals--200,000 vehicles per year globally by 2018--mean it needs more volume models. The Cajun, which is projected to sell 50,000 units a year, is one of those models. The Volkswagen BlueSport, which was supposed to be the 550’s sibling, is not: that model has also reportedly been shelved in favor of higher-volume models as VW looks to rapidly increase sales.

SUVs and Volkswagens aside, the 550 successor was originally slated to arrive some time in 2014, slotting beneath the Boxster and acting as the entry-level model. Now, it would seem that the company is more interested in investing in a model that would slot between the top-spec 911 and the 918 Spyder, which would put its final purchase price somewhere between $375,000 and $500,000.

We’ll just have to wait and see if the itty-bitty Porsche makes it through this uncertain period.

Source: Automotive News (Subscription required)

Wolf47
Porsche should not seek to develop a cheaper entry level car. It will delude the brand and drive down quality. You only have to take a look at BMW, now a mass market brand offering trucks and derivative cars. The 1thru 7 series all look the same, just differing in size. Please keep Porsche a Porsche and not become an Audi TT.

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