In a recent interview for Auto Motor und Sport, a leading German automobile magazine, Porsche CEO Matthias Müller expressed concrete plans to bring a purely electric powered sports car to market in order to compete with Tesla’s eminently popular Model S. Though he discounted the criticality of extended range vehicles specifically those reliant upon a supplementary engine, he emphasized that any Porsche entry into this field should be a purely all-electric EV and have a 300-400 km (186-248 mi) range capability.
Porsche showcased three Boxster E prototypes back in 2011 in varying configurations. The most intriguing offered a 107 mile range in an all-wheel drive package that delivered a 0 to 100 kph (62 mph) acceleration time of 5.5 seconds via one electric motor on the front axle and one on the rear.
Porsche then turned their attention to their Panamera S hybrid. However, while many of Porsche’s trademark characteristics spoke to the eco-minded in their loyal base (nimble handling, responsive power and this model’s luxurious interior), its exterior styling failed to win beauty contests or new converts to its charms.
What about the Porsche 918? I hear you saying. Well, okay, let’s consider that nearly $1m supercar, a future successor to the Carrera GT, for a moment. It’s pricepoint alone assures a customer base of just a few hundred billionaires around the world and its electric range is substantially less that that of the widely celebrated Model S.
Which brings us back to Porsche’s plans for the future. If they are capable of producing an all electric Panamera, the most logical competitor to the Model S and X in Porsche’s lineup, with comparable range and pricing, they may be able to inject some drag into Tesla’s otherwise accelerating growth.