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Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
1/9/20 8:00 p.m.
triumph7 said:

Yes, but it has to be at a reasonable, sub-$30K price point.  Which IS doable.  The question is whether Porsche wants to play in that arena.  IIRC, they had more customer issues with 914 and 924 models than anything else.  Not because the cars were bad but because the, um, entry level customers expected so much.

I think that's a pretty unreasonable expectation. Why would it have to be that cheap? Think more Corvette than BRZ. Sub-$30 is less than a lot of Miatas.

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
1/9/20 8:01 p.m.
David S. Wallens said:

Let's just say that in the near future I will be spending some time with a company possibly mentioned in this thread. Who knows what beans will be spilled. 

McLaren, Porsche, Mazda, Tesla and VW. That's a wide spread.

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
1/9/20 8:05 p.m.

In reply to Keith Tanner :

Yup. smiley

californiamilleghia
californiamilleghia Dork
1/9/20 8:07 p.m.

VW wants to make a "EV skate"  that can be used for many models  ,  so this falls right in there with the EV Manx buggy , MiniVan  and others , 

Hopefully by using the same bottom they can keep the price down.....

Ian F
Ian F MegaDork
1/9/20 8:35 p.m.

I like it, but let's compare it to the current top selling 2-seat, low-priced sports car - the ND - which has barely passed 37K sold over the past 4 years, averaging a tick over 9K per year.  Maybe a 914 EV would sell better. I suspect not. 

If VW does develop an EV "roller skate" that Porsche could base this on there's a chance, but I wouldn't bet money on it.  And I can't imagine anything with a P-badge on it priced less than $50K.

secretariata
secretariata SuperDork
1/9/20 8:43 p.m.
Woody said:
David S. Wallens said:

In reply to jstein77 :

What color for you? I'd have to do Ruby Red for mine. 

Tangerine.

Me likey your thinking Woody!

In reply to David S. Wallens :

Black interior.

GIRTHQUAKE
GIRTHQUAKE HalfDork
1/9/20 9:36 p.m.

It would be very difficult for Porsche to make an EV 914 that would sell well, personally- not becuase it's a bad idea, but because I can't see how they could get one cheap enough price-wise to really make people look at it as an option. Then you run into the problem of whom you're going after- tackle the BRZ/GT86 and you could risk 'cheaping' the Porsche brand and making the 914EV feel "lower class" to tangle with 25K roadsters. What about battery size? Can't have it too big for cost, but also can't cheap out on range since Americans get concerned if something can't do 200 miles.

I think its a good idea, but Porsche needs better, more efficient drivetrains and batteries to make it gain the range needed for people to see it as a little more than a toy. It'll probably have to be a 2+2 for insurance too, instead of a 'true' coupe.

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
1/9/20 10:25 p.m.
Ian F said:

I like it, but let's compare it to the current top selling 2-seat, low-priced sports car - the ND - which has barely passed 37K sold over the past 4 years, averaging a tick over 9K per year.  Maybe a 914 EV would sell better. I suspect not. 

If VW does develop an EV "roller skate" that Porsche could base this on there's a chance, but I wouldn't bet money on it.  And I can't imagine anything with a P-badge on it priced less than $50K.

 Why does it need to outsell the ND? The ND outsells the Boxster pretty handily in the US at the moment.

I wouldn't get too hung up with Porsche looking to compete with the least expensive sports cars on the market, or the fact that the original 914 had a VW connection. I'd take "electric 914!" as "lower-priced Porsche than the high priced Porsche". Basically, the niche currently occupied by the Boxster/Cayman but with electric drive. 

nimblemotorsports
nimblemotorsports Reader
1/9/20 10:56 p.m.

I think it would be a great car.  If it was truly inexpensive, i think it would be very popular, otherwise, why bother?  Make it fast with a small light powerful battery.

The 914 is a very popular EV conversion.

Streetwiseguy
Streetwiseguy MegaDork
1/9/20 11:12 p.m.

Why are we discussing Porsche building it cheap?  That really isn't their target demographic, is it?

JimS
JimS Reader
1/9/20 11:21 p.m.

I like the looks but I have no desire for any electric. The sound of my 911 is part of the enjoyment. No golf carts for me thank you. Yes I know they're fast. 

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
1/9/20 11:24 p.m.
Streetwiseguy said:

Why are we discussing Porsche building it cheap?  That really isn't their target demographic, is it?

The article says "something less expensive than a Cayman". Caymans (Caymen?) start at $57,500. The Taycan is over $100k. So we're talking relative numbers.

nimblemotorsports
nimblemotorsports Reader
1/9/20 11:52 p.m.

It would have to be the same as a Miata to really sell in numbers and have a winner.  IMO.  Porsche doesn't need another expensive car for the few.

If they made it light, fast and nimble, it would do what Tesla hasn't.

stroker
stroker UltraDork
1/10/20 6:02 a.m.

Do it before Toyota does.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Reader
1/10/20 6:22 a.m.

They would need to undercut the Boxster price as well.  I would absolutely love to see one of these, especially if they kept the weight down and the price reasonable.  Ruby red with black interior, here.  And either BBS rims or something that looked like the old Fuchs.

alfadriver
alfadriver MegaDork
1/10/20 6:40 a.m.
Keith Tanner said:
Streetwiseguy said:

Why are we discussing Porsche building it cheap?  That really isn't their target demographic, is it?

The article says "something less expensive than a Cayman". Caymans (Caymen?) start at $57,500. 

That's kind of an odd target to sell this car.  For a chassis, they can't spend money to create a new one- else it would be too expensive.  So the chassis is a cross between a Boxter and a Cayman.  

And, right now in 2020 and the current tech future, the EV powertrain will cost more than the ICE powertrain.  

So if they use a Cayman chassis, selling it for less than Cayman prices would be giving it away.  Makes no sense to me.

As for the available market- it would be stunning if it sold in the same numbers as either P car- again combining the sports car market with the EV market doesn't make the customers bigger...  No way in heck does it sell in Miata numbers- this car isn't going to find some long lost sports car market....  All its going to find are the Sports car people who want an EV....

I'm sure it will be a cool car.  But to be a truly cheap car will take some rather quantum steps in technology vs. where we are now.

Adrian_Thompson
Adrian_Thompson MegaDork
1/10/20 7:01 a.m.

In reply to alfadriver :

You're forgetting that Porsche is part of the VW juggernaut.  VW do an outstanding job of platform sharing, much better than anyone else.  The Pepper wagon is the same platform as Audi A4, A5, A6, A7, A8, Q5, Q7, Q8, E-tron, Lambo Urus, VW Toe-rag and the Porky Mecan.  Just because a random article by a journalist suggests a 'new 914' doesn't mean that Porsche themselves are thinking along the same lines.  If Porsche are looking at this, and I'm sure they're looking at something small and sporty to complement the Taycan, they will be looking at what else is in the VW family they can work with/from.  Just because the 914 is loved by the GRM crowd and now  even embraced by Porsche enthusiasts, it was the red headed step child for most of it's history.  Don't forget that Porsche didn't even sell it as a Porsche in Europe.  It was badged VW-Porsche and sold through VW dealers.  Let's look at what really worked for them.  The 924/44/68 platform saved Porsche as a company.  Why wouldn't they look at another front engine rear drive chassis?  If they want a mid engine car then there is the MR2/X1/9/Fiero etc. model of using budget FWD parts in a mid engine chassis.  There are lot's of ways to skin this proverbial cat.

dean1484
dean1484 MegaDork
1/10/20 7:08 a.m.
Keith Tanner said:

It would be a really interesting entry into the marketplace. I'd love to build an electric ND Miata, but the Porsche price point is probably more realistic. You can charge more for a car with a Porsche badge on it than you can for one with a Mazda badge.

There's one thing that sticks out, though - a big part of the cost of an EV is the battery. And the $100k Taycan can only manage 200 miles of range. If they're targeting 150-180 miles with a similar powertrain, it's going to still need a lot of battery and they're aiming at a lower price point. Either that or they'll have to make it more efficient than the Taycan.

This is a case where the cost will be offset by all the suv sales. 

triumph7
triumph7 Reader
1/10/20 7:30 a.m.

In reply to Keith Tanner :

Maybe but at least sub $40K.

And reading some of the other responses here, the idea of buying the Miata chassis from Mazda and reskinning it to look Porschish would be a solid plan.  Packaging an electric motor and reduction gearbox is small enough to fit where the rear diff and lower fuel tank live, electronics into the upper fuel tank area and batteries under the hood. (I work for a company that converted Dodge vans to all electric so I know what goes into it.)

STM317
STM317 UltraDork
1/10/20 7:41 a.m.

So for all intents and purposes, the new Taycan is basically an electric Panamera. Thanks to Porsche's dumb, but consistent naming strategy, we can actually compare prices for various trim levels pretty easily between the EV and ICE.

A Taycan 4s starts at $104k, while the Panamera 4s starts at $105k.

A Taycan Turbo starts at $151k, while the Panamera Turbo starts at $153k.

A Taycan Turbo S starts at $185k, while the Panamera Turbo S starts at $188k.

So, Porsche has some precedent for pricing their EVs slightly below their equivalent ICE models (within 1% or so). To me, that provides a little hope that this entirely make believe car might not be priced much different than the Boxster (or whatever it's called now).

alfadriver
alfadriver MegaDork
1/10/20 7:44 a.m.
Adrian_Thompson said:

In reply to alfadriver :

You're forgetting that Porsche is part of the VW juggernaut.  VW do an outstanding job of platform sharing, much better than anyone else.  The Pepper wagon is the same platform as Audi A4, A5, A6, A7, A8, Q5, Q7, Q8, E-tron, Lambo Urus, VW Toe-rag and the Porky Mecan.  Just because a random article by a journalist suggests a 'new 914' doesn't mean that Porsche themselves are thinking along the same lines.  If Porsche are looking at this, and I'm sure they're looking at something small and sporty to complement the Taycan, they will be looking at what else is in the VW family they can work with/from.  Just because the 914 is loved by the GRM crowd and now  even embraced by Porsche enthusiasts, it was the red headed step child for most of it's history.  Don't forget that Porsche didn't even sell it as a Porsche in Europe.  It was badged VW-Porsche and sold through VW dealers.  Let's look at what really worked for them.  The 924/44/68 platform saved Porsche as a company.  Why wouldn't they look at another front engine rear drive chassis?  If they want a mid engine car then there is the MR2/X1/9/Fiero etc. model of using budget FWD parts in a mid engine chassis.  There are lot's of ways to skin this proverbial cat.

I understand, but it does not really change the economic math.  If the P-EV is just a car, then it can use a much higher volume platform, as you point out- but it's still going to be more expensive than any of those cars just because of the EV powertrain.  By a significant amount- otherwise they will be giving it away.  So a 914 return can't be cheaper than a Cayman- since it's the same platform, and any other version will have to be more expensive than it's ICE counterpart.

Clearly, the issue of platform sharing with P and VW isn't an issue anymore, since the VW SUV is the top selling car in the P name.  But economics is still economics.  The current state of the art EV powertrain is significantly more expensive than an ICE powertrain- and from what I understand, that includes HEVs, since the additional battery for the pure EV offsets the second powertrain for the HEV (otherwise, the entire industry would be flocking to pure EVs, when the reality is a big increase in HEV's of all flavors.

Regardless of what the P-EV is, it's not going to be "cheap".  VW can't afford it to be.  Nor can we, since it appears that VW EV's will be influencing EV's with F's on the front of them.  I'm really not sure about what that agreement is going to be, but it still leaves a bad tates in my mouth that we did that.

Ian F
Ian F MegaDork
1/10/20 7:46 a.m.

In reply to Keith Tanner :

I used the ND as a simple gauge of the potential market.  No, it probably wouldn't outsell the ND as it would likely be more expensive.  It was more of a statement of what the potential sales might be. Not a lot.

Along a similar train of thought, could this 914 EV model simply replace the Boxter and Cayman as Porsche's entry level car? 

alfadriver
alfadriver MegaDork
1/10/20 7:46 a.m.
dean1484 said:
Keith Tanner said:

It would be a really interesting entry into the marketplace. I'd love to build an electric ND Miata, but the Porsche price point is probably more realistic. You can charge more for a car with a Porsche badge on it than you can for one with a Mazda badge.

There's one thing that sticks out, though - a big part of the cost of an EV is the battery. And the $100k Taycan can only manage 200 miles of range. If they're targeting 150-180 miles with a similar powertrain, it's going to still need a lot of battery and they're aiming at a lower price point. Either that or they'll have to make it more efficient than the Taycan.

This is a case where the cost will be offset by all the suv sales. 

That's the fastest way to have a car eliminated.  It takes ONE shareholder to question why profits are low because of non legal requirements to subsidize a car, and that car will die a quick death.  Just look at all of the OEM's who are stepping away from profitable cars- as the profits are not high enough.  No way a car gets a boost that can't make money.

STM317
STM317 UltraDork
1/10/20 7:47 a.m.
triumph7 said:

In reply to Keith Tanner :

Maybe but at least sub $40K.

And reading some of the other responses here, the idea of buying the Miata chassis from Mazda and reskinning it to look Porschish would be a solid plan.  Packaging an electric motor and reduction gearbox is small enough to fit where the rear diff and lower fuel tank live, electronics into the upper fuel tank area and batteries under the hood. (I work for a company that converted Dodge vans to all electric so I know what goes into it.)

The average new vehicle sold is something like $37k these days. No way Porsche goes that far down market. Audi doesn't really even go that low anymore. That's VWs playground. It would likely be priced in line with the Boxster/Cayman if they're consistent with the prices of the top models.

If they go after the upcoming Tesla Roadster and give it those levels of (claimed) performance, then they can charge 911 money for it.

Kreb
Kreb UberDork
1/10/20 10:00 a.m.

I think that Porsche would do a lot better with something that approximated an upscale, performance-oriented smart car. The sports car market is saturated, and a lot of drivers nowadays don't like looking up at everyone else. But in big cities, having a short car opens up a lot of parking spaces and qualifies you for the carpool lane. But let's be honest, the smart car is a penalty box, as are most tiny cars. But if they were actually fun and fast, Porsche could open up a new market segment.

I'm serious, damnit!

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