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Porsche making $$$$$

Discussion in 'Porsche' started by Texas Forever, Jan 6, 2004.

  1. Texas Forever

    Texas Forever Three Time F1 World Champ
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    Again, from the WSJ --

    For the calendar year 2003, Porsche sold 28,418 vehicles, a 25% rise over the previous year's sales of 21,315 cars.

    But wait a minute! 911 and Boxster sales were down by 27%. So how did sales overall go up?

    Could it be?

    Oh NO, MR BILL!!!!!

    ARGGGGG! ITS THE PEPPER CAR!!!!
     
  2. Mojo

    Mojo Formula 3

    Sep 24, 2002
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    Its always about the dollar.
     
  3. Kds

    Kds F1 World Champ

    These are not retail sales to paying customers, but sales to their dealers. That's how manufacturers report their sales figures if I am not mistaken. Mercedes-Benz Canada made us and other dealers take a bunch of cars we did not want one December of one year to make the outgoing President Ernst Leib look like a movie star at year end.

    Peppers are sitting around unsold all over the US and Canada.
     
  4. Napolis

    Napolis Three Time F1 World Champ
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    Kds
    You be wrong about that. The c is a huge $ maker for P and they are increasing production sharply to meet demand. This is even more impressive re the problems vw, bmw and f are having because of the euro/$. It may be slo in Canada but it's not in US.
     
  5. Kds

    Kds F1 World Champ

    Jim.....

    Firstly, I want to go on record as saying that while I think the Pepper is a tad bit overpriced, it is IMHO a great vehicle and undoubtably a money maker for PAG like you said, given the production efficiences adopted by PAG in the mid-nineties.

    I'd like to "agree to disagree" for now about their US sales figures however, as I do not have access to the "Polk" registration numbers for the US to back up my assertion (and maybe I should have) but, I have been wrong before and will accede graciously if in fact this is the case here. Gotta do more research, I'm just talking outta the side of my head based on heads up info I have.

    In Canada it is a tough sell and I have no information to lead me to believe otherwise about the US situation.
     
  6. Napolis

    Napolis Three Time F1 World Champ
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    If you find the polk #'s please post. The euro/$ is the big problem. A 360 will soon cost 500K US! Maser will become a REAL prob. for them.
    My wife has 12K on her's since aug and still loving it.
    Best
    Jim
     
  7. Texas Forever

    Texas Forever Three Time F1 World Champ
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    IMNSHO, Porsche made the right call in building the Cayenne. Yeah, yeah, I know that all you "car guys" hate SUVs because, well, that what the car guy mags tell you to believe.

    But as a very small manufacturer (before the Pepper, GM probably scrapped more cars than Porsche made), staying alive is more important than esthetics. Given all the competition hitting the ground, I doubt that Porsche would have sold 20,000+ of a new "928" sports car (despite how much I'd like to have one) if they had built a sports car instead of a SUV.

    Moreover, the buzz is that the Cayenne brought in a lot of first-time Porsche customers. It never hurts to have new blood. (Although it remains to be seen how much of this goodwill will remain when these new customers try to sell their Cayenne, but I digress.)

    The real question is what should Porsche do about the 911. Come on, Porsche has been denying the laws of physics for over 50 years! You can do incremental improvement you want, but having the engine over the real wheels, well, sooner or later you hit a wall, or go spinning of the road.

    Even worse, this problem with the 911 is killing the Boxster. At $60K a pop, the Boxster, which is one of the best handling sports cars that I have ever driven, is no longer such a great deal. At $90K a pop, the 911 is an even worse deal. Think about it. How much will the new Covettes go for? How much will the new NSX be? Or, screw all this, you can spend $30k on the new Mini Cooper and blow the doors of all the above so long as you have a road has a few twists here and there.


    So what do you think? What should Porsche do about its sport cars? Here's my thougths:

    1. Put the Twin Turbo engine in the Boxster. (Clue in Black Dog: Hey, hey, mama, said the way you move. Gonna make you sweat, gonna make you groove.)

    2. Make a $150,000 mid-engined Carrera.

    3. Turn the 911 into a club racer for those like Bill Hart who just can't let go...

    Your turn...
     
  8. Hubert

    Hubert F1 Rookie

    Jan 3, 2002
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    although the rear engine/rear wheel design is inherantly flawed, it's been engineered to perfection; a la the GT3 -- drive on, on slicks, and you'll blow the doors off many a production class race car. no bull ****.

    i think suv's suck not b/c the mags tell me to think that, but b/c the prominence of the suv market lead to the death of the mid-level sports car market of the early 90's; i.e., it killed off the 3rd gen rx7 (fd3), nissan 300zx (which was a tub anyway, but still), the TT supra, etc etc etc. the suv stands for everything we, as "car guys" have come to loath b/c it strips the cars we drive of the very visceral qualities that have brought us to our knees chasing the perfect driving experience.

    i agree that the boxster is TOTALLY overpriced -- you can buy a "base" carrera for a fully optioned boxster S price tag, and that's simply idiotic.
    i think porsche should release a few more variant of the boxster -- like they're planning; i.e., boxster coupe, "clubsport" edition, etc-- but they're going to need to bring the pricing in line, in order to capture the middle segment buyers that can now look forward to a whole slew of new "enthusiast" based cars coming onto the market. the carrera brand name, personally, i think they should stop whoring out, and buil only a few models, but also release the limited ed. varients here, rather than simply giving us the 40th ed. 911 which is nothing more than a basic 911 with the x51 pkg fitted std, some polished wheels and a custom paint job.

    the carrera name should be retained, and be maintained, as a sports car, but with the now countless variants, it's as though the term carrera no longer holds the same allure. they should have brought the GT3RS to the states to really play ball -- then bill and I would have a car we simply couldn't improve on.

    i find the pepper to be a good business model, but i'll never concede that it was a good move, per se, for the brand name. needless to say, in business, you've got to stay a float, and if it keeps porsche independant, well... then that's that.

    what i'm still peeved about, is the constant push back of porsche factory backed efforts in endurance racing... 3 years... then 5... now... ??

    in the end, however, you can't fault a company that's made the worst design in automotive engineering, one of the most astute racing platforms in history. and, the fact that they've, in my not so humble opinion, built the near perfect car in the carrera GT is just icing on my preverbial porsche cupcake.

    got flat 6?
     
  9. Texas Forever

    Texas Forever Three Time F1 World Champ
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    That's why I'm thinking that Porsche should turn the 911 into a club racer a al the GT2 and GT3. These are both great cars, but they don't belong on the street. They belong on the track where a highly skilled driver can use them as designed. But the thought of some airhead plunking down $$$$ and then blasting down the road... scary.

    DrTax
     
  10. Hubert

    Hubert F1 Rookie

    Jan 3, 2002
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    But they already sell factory made Cup Cars which aren't street legal, and meant to compete in the Super Cup series and PCA racing series. If that were the case -- 911 as club racer only-- what happens to the street division? And, why bother with a 150k mid - engined 911? If the GT2 / GT3 platforms are too raw, why bother building a street legal sports car at all?
    Should the porsche business model then be one of an SUV manufacture that moonlights as a race car builder? Lastly, a 911TT engine in a boxster would propel that chassis to the same supersonic velocties attained in either the GT2/GT3 -- how would that fit into the market share -- or how would it assuade your fears of some bozo shelling out the cash and endangering the SUV driving sheep as if he were in a GT2/3?
    Interesting postulations, Doc... lemme know what you think.
     
  11. ryalex

    ryalex Two Time F1 World Champ
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    I think the Boxster should get more differentiated from the 911 in its moudling, and get the price back down to the high 30's/40's for an S.

    Heck, with the Mitsubishi Evo and Subaru STi running $28-32k for twice the performance, many 'performance minded' young buyers are going elsewhere - they just have their hairdresser and women market left. I shopped used Boxsters this summer before settling on a WRX as it gave me waaay more performance (and AWD) for the price. Boxster needs something new, bad. Young men don't want them that's for sure.

    I say keep the 911, but less versions (is anyone buying the Targa?). The next-gen's 993-ish look is a definite plus.

    Cayenne was 'MBA-smart,' not a passionate sport enthusiast's move. It'll stay, and probably sell fairly well... especially among badge-snobs who don't *really* go for performance, but can afford it (NOTE: I'm not saying this about people on the board with them, I'm just saying I see this as their stereotyped marketing target niche). And women (I've only seen women driving them, there's a handful in my neighborhood); I assume many car guys buy them... for their wives.

    I'm just afraid Porsche in America will become just like VW: marketed to women and fufu snotty California blond chicks.
     
  12. Texas Forever

    Texas Forever Three Time F1 World Champ
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    Well, my 2 cents is that a mid-engined hot rod will be more driver friendly than a rear-engined hot rod. Actually, I'd prefer for Porsche to make a front-engined V10 that has the engine behind the front wheels. In other words, build the Z3/Z4/Z8 that BMW should have built, but I digress.

    Again, Porsche's problem is that the Boxster is too expensive for what you get and the 911 has gotten too out there for most drivers. For example, the other day I did a brisk run with a GT2 and a TT. Both the P-car guys are better drivers than me (or least they have had more training) But, the P-cars were slipping and sliding all over the place, while the Maranello wasn't even breathing hard. (Well, this was true so long as I kept remembering NOT to do any late braking which is not a good thing in a 550.) Granted the GT2 and the TT are designed to break loose slightly; but on that particular day, my big heavy beast was beating those boys in the twisties.

    So, again, what should Porsche do? Has Porsche finally hit a wall with incremental improvement of the 356/911 platform?

    Your turn, DrTax
     
  13. Texas Forever

    Texas Forever Three Time F1 World Champ
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    Ryan, are fufu snotty Califorina blond chicks any different from Texas gals with Big Hair?

    Dale
     
  14. Hubert

    Hubert F1 Rookie

    Jan 3, 2002
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    Well... with your midengined porsche corollary I see them building a new 550 spyder, and that would be great -- but how would that affect the exclusivity of the CGT uniquiness in layout? Maybe a more "mundane" CGT is what you're after, in that case, I'm with you!

    I can't ever see porsche making a replacement platform to the 911, simply b/c the 911 is porsche. It always has been, and will probably remain to be so. I think the model lines will bifurcate, but porsche without the 911 wouldn't be the same.

    I don't know if I agree with you on the new porsche being too much to handle; I know that many an early 930 turbo and even the 964 turbos ended up ass first in a ditch -- on account of the layou-- but the new 996 chassis , and even the 993-- were, and are, truely sublime handling cars. Very, very well balanced.

    In my opinon, porsche should reel in the 911 line. Make only a base 911, a turbo variant a la GT2, and a naturally aspirated variant a la the GT3 (or , for me, the GT3RS). Porsche built it's reputation on building race cars for the street; i.e., 70 carrera S, etc It's why they now can afford to bank on their name, becuase their reputation superceeds them, but in my mind, they need to realign their focus.

    The boxster needs to be their next market segment target; it's a phenomenal car, but no one is going to buy a 60k boxster when there are 993's and 996 carreras to be had for the same dollar, albeit used, but no matter.

    I wouldn't mind if porsche brought back the edge to the carrera line, if they varied the boxster line considerably (from a luxo cruiser spec all the way to club racer coupe, but all need to be in the 40k price point), and, alas, to keep making the pepper as that will keep them "out of the red." (as, i take it, the beancounters say).
     
  15. Texas Forever

    Texas Forever Three Time F1 World Champ
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    Hey, now yer talking! Yeah a 550 Sypder for $140K to go heads up against the Ford GT. Bring em on, Baby!

    Say good nite, gracie..
     
  16. ryalex

    ryalex Two Time F1 World Champ
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    LOL. Well, the CA chicks think they're the coolest ever, and unfortunately the media has convinced many women around the world that they are. Many girls think the grass is greener in Beverly Hills. It makes it more difficult for us young hubbies trying to find a good job, and many times the best job isn't in the OC.

    I don't think the Texas girls care - their boyfriend has his shotguns prominently displayed in his pickup.

    I'm just telling you from the trenches that VW seriously has a mystical marketing voodoo spell on American girls. My wife included (side benefit: much cheaper to satisfy her automotive wishes, more $$ for my *somewhat* more extravagant tastes!).

    Glad to see others agree that the Boxster, although good looking, is too frickin expensive for what you get.
     
  17. tvrfreak

    tvrfreak F1 Rookie
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    Don't forget the Lotus Elise at $39k. That's gonna be the one to beat.
     
  18. JaguarXJ6

    JaguarXJ6 F1 Veteran

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    Sunny
    Lotus is going to laugh all the way to the bank with trucks full of cash from Boxster converts. Porsche will have to gamble big that they won't suffer greater loses when the Elise actually hits the shores.

    The Boxster can be one of the best cars they ever made if they option it and produce variants. Hopefully they will divert some R&D money from the SUV towards the model and breathe some life back into it. They have to do it fast though, in less than a year, the Elise is going to be in very big demand.

    There's no question which I would pick.. the Lotus. If they come out with an Exige 911 killer, what then? Come out with a sedan? Or lower the prices?

    Sunny
     
  19. Texas Forever

    Texas Forever Three Time F1 World Champ
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    You're right. I had forgot about this one. My business partner has one on order. I'll let you know how it turns out when it gets here.

    DrTax
     
  20. zjpj

    zjpj F1 Veteran

    Nov 4, 2003
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    Do you think the Elise will take people from the Boxster? I see the Elise as the Stradale or GT3 of less expensive sports cars. No creature comforts at all! Great for driving enthusiasts, but not so great for the many Boxster owners who drive their cars every day and want electric gizmos, etc. etc.
     
  21. Texas Forever

    Texas Forever Three Time F1 World Champ
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    Does anybody know how many Elises will be made? I seem to recall that Lotus typically has very small production runs. My guess is that they are already sold out. My partner in Houston is about number 15 on the list.

    But yes, Porsche are you listening? $40K for a pure sports car. $30K for the Mini Cooper hot rod. Somehow, I don't think that $60k is gonna make it anymore. I could be wrong, but...

    DrTax
     
  22. Kds

    Kds F1 World Champ

    Jim......

    I spent some time researching Cayenne sales figures online as I promised I would, and while I do not have the rather expensive subscription to Polk (a friend back home in Canada does and he hasn`t answered my e-mail) all I was able to find online was reports based on current sales figures that they will probably only deliver 16-17,000 Cayennes this year (25,000 were forecast)........reports that PCNA has now refused to disclose dealer inventory levels in their media reports........reports that they have reduced the workweek at Leipzig where the Cayenne is built........and reports indicating what probably is the main reason the thing is selling in the first place.......it qualifies for the newly revised IRS tax deduction because of its weight.

    Dr.Tax....

    On the 911 side......bring out the 997 sooner.............and allow us to buy them with crank windows, no air conditioning or sunroofs, no sound insulation, "real" sport seats, etc, etc, and lower the damn price A LOT !! Oh...yeh...another 50 HP would be nice too.

    Anyways...............I wish Porsche well as they are and always have been the car company closest to my heart.
     
  23. amenasce

    amenasce Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Cayennes sales are making up for the old 996 and 986 ranges.
     

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