The Taycan is arguably one of the most important model launches in Porsche’s history. It’s also one of the marque’s most expensive investments. It has pumped more than £5.3billion into the project, including the construction of the factory.
It might surprise you to discover, then, that Porsche doesn’t expect the Taycan to turn a profit until 2023.
This is nothing Porsche wasn’t prepared for – the primary expense is battery production. The marque anticipates that over the coming years, battery costs will take a significant tumble. Speaking with Bloomberg, Porsche CEO Oliver Blume said he expected the Taycan to make a “good margin” eventually.
This is part of the reason why Porsche has launched with the expensive Taycan Turbo and Turbo S models. The truth is they’re not that much more expensive to build than lower-end models.
This is also why Tesla launches it’s highest performing and most expensive variants first. That’s why we’re still waiting for the most affordable Model 3, three years after the standard car’s reveal.
Consider also the high volume of fully-electric hypercars that have been revealed of late. A seven-figure list price can absorb the cost of batteries and motors, however high-performance they may be. In turn, you introduce electric power to the zeitgeist while advancing battery and e motor development. It’s a win-win. Going a bit further down the affordability tree for the Taycan is a bit of a brave pill for Porsche.
The Taycan is the head of an electric revolution, though. A loss-leader it may be, but you don’t build an entirely new factory for the sake of producing one expensive car.
Porsche has been very open about wanting the next-generation Macan to have an all-electric variant. Likewise, an all-electric 911 can’t be more than ten years away. Porsche is one in an automotive group, too. Technical partners are never far away, which in the case of this electric endeavour, it has found in Audi.
The coming E-Tron GT super saloon will borrow some hard-won and expensive Taycan knowhow. The Taycan treads new ground for Porsche, and treading new ground tends to be expensive. But many more models and variants to come will follow in those footsteps.
In terms of production numbers, the Taycan isn’t expected to outstrip the 911, of which around 35,000 are built every year. As we and Bloomberg have previously reported, the 911 is the most profitable car in the world in terms of numbers made versus profit margins.