Porsche To Develop And Produce Sport Utility Vehicle
4 June 1998Porsche To Develop And Produce Sport Utility Vehicle
ATLANTA, June 4 -- Porsche AG in Stuttgart, Germany has announced it will be expanding its 911 and Boxster model lines by building a sport utility vehicle (SUV). Scheduled to be launched in 2002, the new Porsche SUV will have off-road capability and permanent four-wheel drive. It will be based on the same platform as the new off-road vehicle planned by Volkswagen AG, and powered by engines developed and built by Porsche. The supervisory boards of Porsche and Volkswagen have given their go-ahead for the cooperative effort. Porsche and its Research and Development Center in Weissach will assume development leadership on both the Volkswagen and Porsche vehicles, which will have their own fully independent features. In the fall of 1998 the two companies will decide on a production site. Porsche has set aside a total investment budget of approximately one billion German Marks ($600 million) for this project. Annual sales of the Porsche SUV will be approximately 20,000 units worldwide. Commenting on the project, Dr. Wendelin Wiedeking, Chairman of the Porsche AG Board of Management, said, "Our new sport utility vehicle will not only correspond in full with Porsche's high technical and visual standards, but will also pave the way for future growth potential in the sales, turnover and earnings areas. It will help to reduce our dependency on the traditional sports car, convertible and roadster segments, and achieve gains in sales volume which will strengthen Porsche's position still further."