According to Porsche CEO Matthias Mueller, the idea remains actively discussed. Dubbed internally as the “550” project, only last month did Porsche hold a focus group to get a feel for the timing of an A-segment roadster. While Mueller declined to reveal the findings, he did acknowledge that an entry-level Porsche isn’t so much a question of “if”, but “when is the right time? Now? Three years from now? Six or Seven?”
Porsche’s main concern for the entry spyder isn’t a matter of technical ability but a concern over brand image when entering a lower-priced segment. Also, if the “550” project is given the green light, then it will take another three years to reach production. In any case, Porsche’s sales and marketing member Bernhard Maier explained, “We’re in no hurry. We have the freshest and youngest model line we’ve had in our history.”
In the meantime, Porsche will create more variants for its current model line-up. Regarding the redesigned 2013 Boxster, Porsche made a point that the Boxster hasn’t moved upmarket to make room for an entry sports car. Rather, the new refinements are intended for Boxster’s natural product trajectory. In fact, Porsche plans to provide a turbocharged flat-4 powered Boxster offering in the future.
This looks to be the perfect interim solution as Porsche could test the waters with a new engine without having to risk an all-new model. Bernhard Maier believes that “a lot of opportunities” remain for Boxster variants. However, it is important for Porsche that each “must be profitable, which means a certain amount of sales volume.”
GALLERY: 2013 Porsche Boxster
[Source: Motor Authority]