Earlier this month, Volkswagen Group CEO Oliver Blume outlined his vision for the group to shareholders at an extraordinary meeting. Part of his vision involved remaining CEO of the Porsche brand, a dual role that a couple of large shareholders at the meeting questioned. Now, in an interview with Car, Blume outlined his vision for Porsche. Answering a question about the evolution into electrification, Blume said the entire lineup will offer a combination of ICE, hybrid, and battery-electric powertrains. The Cayenne and Panamera have hybrid and ICE motivations, the Macan is going electric, the Taycan is already there. Adhering to a similar breakdown of flagships retaining combustion, Blume said Porsche will add “a very sporty hybridization to the 911” as the 718 twins shift to electrification.
For those just joining the program, there have been rumors about a 911 hybrid for at least 14 years. In 2009, Next Autos published spy shots of a 911 with a polygonal bulge on the hood and now-familiar lightning stickers, the car said to make no noise as it sped away. The Stuttgart automaker ruled out a 911 hybrid in 2014, reconsidered it in 2017 and confirmed its eventual arrival, CEO Blume saying in 2018 it would be the “most powerful 911 we’ve ever had” before reports of second thoughts about a power output that would shade every Turbo and third thoughts in 2020 about the engineering being “really difficult.” considering the 911’s form factor and mission. At that time, the hybrid was reported to arrive in 2023. That won’t be happening, but it sounds like we’ll find out soon how all the ideas and arguments settle into production form.
Blume stressed again that the company wants to keep an internal combustion engine in the 911 for as long as possible, and sees not only hybrids, but also developments such as synthetic fuels as a possible means to extend the run.
What 2023 will bring is more special editions. Car noted Porsche has several anniversaries next year, Blume noting 2023 will mark the 60th anniversary of the 911, the 75th anniversary of the company, and the 80th birthday of Wolfgang Porsche, son of Ferdinand “Ferry” Porsche and grandson of Ferdinand Sr.
There will eventually be more off-road special editions, too. Blume described the 911 Dakar’s 2,500-unit supply as a way to test the market. With all of those sponged up — as everyone knew they would be — “the door is open” to consider a range of more rugged 911 variants that can serve customers and more remote parts of the world.
The whole interview’s worth a read. Car‘s questions cover just about everything Porsche is doing and might do, from the electrification timeline and increased customization to the influx of new customers thanks to the Taycan and lifestyle accessories like rooftop tents. And Blume again confirms an expansion to the model range “with a very luxurious SUV,” an all-electric entry on the coming SSP platform to sit above the Cayenne.