Porsche Preparing Main Plant To Build 718 EV Sports Car, Macan EV Motors
Porsche wants people to know it is serious about electrification, which is why it is announcing upgrades to its main plant in Stuttgart-Zuffenhausen, the home of the legendary 911 and the 718 Cayman and Boxster.
After repeated delays caused mostly by software platform development issues, Porsche is gearing up for the launch of its next-generation electric vehicles starting next year.
We’re talking about the all-important Macan EV SUV coming in sometime in 2024 and the all-electric 718 sports car, expected in late 2025.
The automaker has announced that it is carrying “extensive reconstruction measures and extensions” at its core plant to accommodate production of the next-generation 718 electric sports cars on the traditional assembly line, alongside Porsche models with a boxer engine.
We already knew that the Macan EV will also be made in parallel with the ICE Macan for a while, which may indicate that Porsche isn’t ready to put all its eggs in the same basket just yet.
New light tunnel at Porsche’s Zuffenhausen plant
The carmaker said it is putting some 250 million euros ($271 million) in the construction work, which will include upgrading numerous production systems and integrating the assembly of the electric powertrain for the Macan EV into the existing engine plant in Zuffenhausen.
After assembly, the Macan EV electric powertrains will be shipped to Porsche’s Leipzig plant where vehicle production will be taking place.
“60 years of the Porsche 911 and 75 years of Porsche sports cars: the double anniversary marks a special year for Porsche. The reconstruction measures and extensions to sports car production at our main plant are an important milestone for the Zuffenhausen site,” said Albrecht Reimold, Member of the Executive Board for Production and Logistics at Porsche AG.
“The conversion measures will enable increased efficiency, the highest quality standards, and mixed production of combustion-engine and electric sports cars. This will see us start a new chapter in sports car production in terms of the smart factory.”
As part of the modernization program, Porsche has extended the production line area for two-door sports cars at the main plant. This area will use automated guided vehicles (AGVs), which will replace the traditional assembly line with a so-called ‘Flexiline’ that will enable EVs and ICEs to be assembled on the same line. Porsche already uses AGVs for the production of the Taycan.
The company said it is also setting up new assembly processes and new quality assurance stations. Standardized quality assurance and approval checkpoint points have been integrated into the production process, and Porsche also installed a new light tunnel for vehicle inspections.
In addition, the acoustic test benches have been adapted to the requirements of electric vehicles, while the test benches for leak and surface inspections have been fully revamped.
Porsche is also extending the logistics areas within the body shop, adding a new building at the site of the former Porsche Center across from the Porsche Museum. Scheduled for completion in 2025, this building will supply the body shop with Taycan and sports car parts via high-bay racks extending over two floors.
This is all good news, but the fact remains we don’t have firm timelines on when Porsche will start production of the long-awaited Macan EV and the 718 EV, the brand’s first two-door electric sport car. Porsche says the Macan EV will enter production sometime in 2024, while the 718 EV is expected around 2025.
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