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Future models - Porsche - Cayman

Porsche plans to spread Cayman fun

No worries: Porsche believes the Cayman will not rob sales from the 911.

Porsche confirms a base Cayman as the next step - but stops short of a Club Sport

25 Jan 2006

A BASE model variant of Porsche’s Cayman S coupe, on sale this week in Australia, is still about 12 months away – but do not expect a more powerful Club Sport version that would even more seriously challenge the 911.

Speaking at last week’s launch of the Boxster-based mid-engined coupe, Porsche Cars Australia managing director Michael Winkler confirmed the Zuffenhausen sportscar-maker would, as expected, introduce a second variant below the Cayman S.

Asked about the timeframe of a lesser-powered, less-expensive Cayman variant, Mr Winkler said: "We haven’t decided the timeline – it could be slightly more than 12 months or slightly less than 12 months.

"I’m being vague because it hasn’t been decided. It won’t be three months (away)." Mr Winkler dismissed suggestions the $148,500 Cayman S coupe would rob sales from Porsche’s flagship 911 coupe, which is priced from $195,225.

"Irrespective of how good we think the Cayman is, 911 will always be the best," he said.

"People move up to a 911, not down from it. We don’t see cannibalisation between Cayman and 911, which remains the halo of the brand.

"Cayman S is the next step for Boxster owners. It will bring new customers to the brand, especially in coupe-crazy Australia, which is not a rag-top market."While in Australia for the Cayman S release, Porsche’s director of complete vehicle development, Rolf Frech, told GoAuto that while a larger-engined oreven a turbocharged Cayman variant was technically possible, the company would not offer a more powerful version of the Cayman than the S.

25 center image"Our vision is that everyone will aspire to a 911 Turbo," he said. "A 3.6, 3.8 or even a turbocharged Cayman is feasible with minor packaging changes, but that is not our strategy.

"Cayman was always designed to be (positioned) between Boxster and 911 in bothperformance and price."Mr Winkler said Cayman would attract buyers shopping for the likes of BMW’s M3 and the Mercedes-Benz CLK AMG.

"Until now, Porsche has not had a representative in that market," he said.

"Cayman will also attract people who want a hard-top Porsche but who don’t have$200,000 to spend." PCA sold 1205 vehicles in 2005, including 321 Boxsters (down one unit on 2004despite the second-generation Boxster being launched locally in February), 414 Cayennes (down 148) and 470 911s – up 90 vehicles on its 2004 tally to make 2005 the best year of 911 sales ever.

"Last year was one of the most difficult years ever," said Mr Winkler. "There was pressure on dealer margins and pressure on resale values.

Some of Cayenne’s rivals were also on their last legs of the model cycle, so were being sold with what I call unnatural acts. And (high) fuel prices didn’t help either.

"Our goal was not to achieve record sales, but to retain resale values," he said.

PCA will follow the official Cayman S release with a number of significant launches in 2006, including the Cayenne Turbo S in March and the hotly anticipated rear-drive GT3 and flagship Turbo versions of the latest 911 early in the second half.

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