Porsche Looking to Build Cars in North America, China
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The company’s current assembly facilities in Zuffenhausen, near Stuttgart, and Leipzig, are insufficient for the growth it expects in coming years. “We will consider this year whether to start production in Asia or North America,” Mueller said to German magazine Focus, according to Autoweek.
We’ve already told you that Porsche is eyeing production of its new Cajun SUV in China. But the carmaker could also open up a test track for its customers near the Shanghai F1 track, and expand its Chinese dealer network from the current 85 to approximately 100, sometime in the future. Mueller also said that the US is the brand’s most important market, thus it is crucial to achieve the growth target.
Porsche is being integrated into Volkswagen as the group's 10th brand, after Volkswagen reached a 49.9 percent stake in Porsche Automobil Holding SE. The previous sales target of 150,000 units a year had been set by VW CEO Martin Winterkorn, but Muller believed it to be too small as new models will be launched, such as the Cajun, which is expected in 2013, and the rumored sub-Boxter sportscar.
All these discussions on future Porsches being built in America or China touch on a very sensitive subject for Porsche fans, who consider the brand a purely German product. Mueller said, in a separate interview with WirtschaftsWoche magazine, that the carmaker had previously outsourced Boxster manufacturing to Valmet, in Finland. "We are OK as long as we can say our cars are 'engineered by Porsche,'" he told the magazine.
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