RE: Porsche 718s may return to flat-six power...

RE: Porsche 718s may return to flat-six power...

Thursday 5th September

Porsche 718s may return to flat-six power...

...but probably only with hybrid help



The excitement around and plaudits for the latest 718 Cayman GT4 and Boxster Spyder could encourage Porsche to reintroduce the flat-six to its wider 718 range - but probably only if it includes hybrid hardware to keep CO2 down. Speaking to PH at the Taycan's reveal near Berlin, CEO Oliver Blume said engineers already have "many ideas" for returning six-cylinder power to series production 718 models, but he hinted that electrification could be the key to enabling it.

"The four-cylinder 718 has actually become a best-seller for Porsche in China, but we also know it's true other markets prefer the six-cylinder motor," said Blume. "We have felt the response from these markets and have begun looking at what options we have for the future."

While refraining from elaborating on details, Blume did at least agree with PH's suggestion that a mild hybrid setup looked a smart option to satisfy both emissions targets and enthusiast customer demand. Although rather than spelling the end of the boxer four 718, Blume hinted that different markets could be offered powertrains tailored to their sales. Still, it means there's genuine hope of a return to flat-six 718s beneath the GT4 and Spyder, even if they're only offered to Europe and the US.


It wouldn't be the first time Porsche made an engineering U-turn after listening to response from its customers. Remember the uproar, just a generation and a half of 911 ago, when a manual GT3 looked like a thing of the past? The return of three pedals and a stick to the GT3's interior was driven by enthusiast demand, so there's reason to believe the same sort of shift will come following the broadly lukewarm response to four-cylinder 718s. That many critics have preferred the Alpine A110 as a four-cylinder sports car must also have had an impact; a flat six once more would give the Porsche a USP over the Alpine.

Indeed, Blume's comments were echoed by Porsche Finance Director Lutz Meschke, who in a completely separate conversation said that he believed "the 718 will start the electrification of Porsche's sports cars". Meschke took things further, however, by revealing that he'd prefer the 718 to go straight to all-electric power - a move that would no doubt be driven by demand in China, which he revealed is on course to account for about 30 percent of Porsche's electrified vehicle sales alone.

The future of the 718 is therefore still rather murky at this stage, suggesting we've quite a while to wait before the speculation turns to fact. But reading between the lines of Porsche's high-ranking executives, it does look like non-GT-spec 718 Caymans and Boxsters are set for reinvigoration with two new powerplants. Meschke's battery-electric one and, fingers crossed, another that sings the much missed tune of a flat-six. Handy to have Blume on side for that one, you'd hope...




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Author
Discussion

Riverside Red

Original Poster:

893 posts

80 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
Thanks PH for the info, just been to my local OPC to ask about 2020 Spyder build slots and the six cylinder 718 and basically told no (and little else) to both questions. Looks like I need to look elsewhere.

Salesmen just can't be bothered, flogging £100k cars must be too easy.

RR

driftingphil

79 posts

92 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
Riverside Red said:
Thanks PH for the info, just been to my local OPC to ask about 2020 Spyder build slots and the six cylinder 718 and basically told no (and little else) to both questions. Looks like I need to look elsewhere.

Salesmen just can't be bothered, flogging £100k cars must be too easy.

RR
I'd go to another dealer!

Futse

144 posts

130 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
Riverside Red said:
Thanks PH for the info, just been to my local OPC to ask about 2020 Spyder build slots and the six cylinder 718 and basically told no (and little else) to both questions. Looks like I need to look elsewhere.

Salesmen just can't be bothered, flogging £100k cars must be too easy.

RR
Maybe salesmen don't know everything... If it's not even confirmed at Porsche HQ, why (and what) would they tell Porsche salesmen?

MIP1983

193 posts

150 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
Don't mind the idea of a mild hybrid 6-pot boxster, as long as it sounds good and doesn't make it too lardy. The current 4-pot wouldn't tempt me out of my 981, but that might.

Vee12V

834 posts

105 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
Riverside Red said:
Salesmen just can't be bothered, flogging £100k cars must be too easy.

RR
Just the typical OPC tts, I'm sure. I once went to my local OPC to inform about a GT3, but left quite quickly after having being treated like a piece of trash, despite having rolled up in something substantially more expensive and rare. I'm not sure who these idiots sell to, but they'll never see my money. That's for sure.

Miserablegit

739 posts

54 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
My fear is hybridisation of the current platform is going to be lardy. If gt4 is knocking on 1500kg then an extra 300kg+ for a hybrid system isn’t going to help matters
I thought with the taycan they could get around emissions issues for the rest of the range as they now had one “low emission at point of use” vehicle.
Be interesting to see - an electric sportscar would be something different to steal a march on Tesla - I view the taycan as more of a gt albeit range is not huge.


Thornaby

391 posts

14 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
My local OPC are the opposite and couldn't be more helpful. Even offered me a test drive, without asking for one, in a car well above the budget i'd said as they didn't have one in my price range. He'd said it'd give me a good idea until the right car came up.

yonex

15,075 posts

113 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
Vee12V said:
Just the typical OPC tts, I'm sure. I once went to my local OPC to inform about a GT3, but left quite quickly after having being treated like a piece of trash, despite having rolled up in something substantially more expensive and rare. I'm not sure who these idiots sell to, but they'll never see my money. That's for sure.
Totally agree. One of the worst dealer experiences for me ever to be honest.

MIP1983

193 posts

150 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
Miserablegit said:
My fear is hybridisation of the current platform is going to be lardy. If gt4 is knocking on 1500kg then an extra 300kg+ for a hybrid system isn’t going to help matters
That is a worry. I don't know what a 'mild' hybrid system weighs vs a full fat one? Hopefully not as much as 300kg. Maybe they can find some savings elsewhere to compensate. Here's hoping.

Apart from that, a mild hybrid might be hard to blend with a manual gearbox. I can kind of imagine how it might work, but that doesn't mean they'll do it.

Edited by MIP1983 on Thursday 5th September 14:33

G7G

2 posts

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
OK good but ... how heavy the thing will be then ?
The 718 is already way heavier than the Alpine so I guess it'll hit 1500 kg then ...
The guys at Dieppe must be patting themselves in the back !

Riverside Red

Original Poster:

893 posts

80 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
driftingphil said:
Riverside Red said:
Thanks PH for the info, just been to my local OPC to ask about 2020 Spyder build slots and the six cylinder 718 and basically told no (and little else) to both questions. Looks like I need to look elsewhere.

Salesmen just can't be bothered, flogging £100k cars must be too easy.

RR
I'd go to another dealer!
Next closest is just as poor, and I can't be ar**d to travel over 70 miles to the next one (which is in the same group), perhaps it's just me but when I am intending to spend around £80k plus on a new or used car I just expect a lot more.

But I've decided today that I won't have another Porsche, one's been quite enough.....the car has been good, but I haven't enjoyed the whole ownership experience at all.

RR

Court_S

1,173 posts

122 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
MIP1983 said:
That is a worry. I don't know what a 'mild' hybrid system weighs vs a full fat one? Hopefully not as much as 300kg. Maybe they can find some savings elsewhere to compensate. Here's hoping.

Apart from that, a mild hybrid might be hard to blend with a manual gearbox. I can kind of imagine how it might work, but that doesn't mean they'll do it.

Edited by MIP1983 on Thursday 5th September 14:33
It’ll add a fair chunk; look at the Golf GTR; it’s circa 200/250kg heavier than a normally ICE jobbie.

When the hybrid is with you in them the weight isn’t that noticeable. When it’s empty it is. It impacts on the ride too and it really thuds through pot holes. I know it’s only a Golf but I can’t see it adding to the handling experience of the Cayman.

GTiWILL

199 posts

23 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
Riverside Red said:
Thanks PH for the info, just been to my local OPC to ask about 2020 Spyder build slots and the six cylinder 718 and basically told no (and little else) to both questions. Looks like I need to look elsewhere.

Salesmen just can't be bothered, flogging £100k cars must be too easy.

RR
Perhaps they’re as in the dark as you are?

Leggy

863 posts

167 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
What does that say about the future residuals and desirability of current 4 cyl version then.
I’d be hanging on to my 6 cyl if I had one.

GTEYE

1,400 posts

155 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
Leggy said:
What does that say about the future residuals and desirability of current 4 cyl version then.
I’d be hanging on to my 6 cyl if I had one.
It'll say nothing. The 6 cylinder ones will be more expensive.

And in the article, whenever I see the word "may", it's just as likely "may not". Speculation in other words.

Nerdherder

1,286 posts

42 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
The 4 banger is a very good daily actually. Hope they'll go back to 6 cylinders, which will drop the 4 pot straight into my budget!

Ps interesting to read that the 718 is doing so well in China.

Mr_Sukebe

231 posts

153 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
I was sure that Porsche stated that the reason for moving to the 4 cylinder unit, was because a 6 wouldn't fit.
Surely that wasn't just marketing BS?

AW10

3,561 posts

194 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
"Still, it means there's genuine hope of a return to flat-six 718s beneath the GT4 and Spyder, even if they're only offered to Europe and the US."

Given that the 718 GT4 and Spyder have been released with Flat 6 engines I don't understand this statement. Or has PH just rehashed an old article and not bothered to proof it?

Mike335i

2,508 posts

47 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
AW10 said:
"Still, it means there's genuine hope of a return to flat-six 718s beneath the GT4 and Spyder, even if they're only offered to Europe and the US."

Given that the 718 GT4 and Spyder have been released with Flat 6 engines I don't understand this statement. Or has PH just rehashed an old article and not bothered to proof it?
It means that there is now hope that additional six cylinder models might be available, but as the four cylinder suits the Chinese market, there may be a limited market for the six cylinder.

AW10

3,561 posts

194 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
laughlaugh I read it as under the sheet metal as opposed to lower in the model range! laughlaugh