1. THE DRIVING EXPERIENCE IS A HUGE PART OF THE PORSCHE BRAND’S SUCCESS. WHAT DO YOU THINK WILL BE THE IMPACT ON PORSCHE WHEN IT COMES TO AUTONOMOUS DRIVING?
A Porsche is defined above all by the exclusive, sporty driving experience. That is why the driver always wants to be the one actually doing the driving. In everyday traffic, however, there are situations when even a Porsche driver will gladly avail of autonomous driving modules, for example in traffic jams or stop-and-go traffic. Not to mention the convenience of getting out right in front of the restaurant and having the car look after finding a parking space. This is very much in line with the exclusivity of our brand. In addition, we are working on innovative concepts that put a Porsche spin on autonomous driving. Here, we are thinking about a Mark Webber app, for example. This guides the driver around the track on the perfect racing line – as a virtual instructor.
2. IN THE CONTEXT OF EMISSION REGULATIONS, HOW DO YOU MANAGE THE TRANSFORMATION TO ELECTRIC VEHICLES? AND HOW DOES ELECTRIFICATION ALIGN WITH THE SPORTIVE DNA OF PORSCHE?
Electromobility and Porsche go together perfectly. In combination with high-performance batteries, the electric drive offers outstanding performance values. Porsche is also very emphatic in its commitment to the ambitious climate targets. This is another reason why electromobility is essential. Porsche started electrifying the powertrain already years ago. For example, Porsche was the first manufacturer to offer models with plug-in hybrid drive in three premium segments simultaneously. Now, more than 60% of Panamera customers in Europe choose the hybrid variant. Electrification has therefore been very well received. That is why we plan to invest six billion euros in electromobility by 2022 and will be launching our first purely electrically powered sports car, the Taycan, later this year. Even though no customers have been able to drive it yet, demand for this model is already so high that we have increased our initially planned production capacities.
3. PORSCHE’S CORPORATE CULTURE: YOU MAKE PREMIUM CARS BUT STILL VALUE THE SPIRIT OF A FAMILY COMPANY. HOW DO YOU SECURE THIS SPIRIT FOR THE FUTURE?
Porsche is known for its special corporate culture. It has played a significant role in our brand’s success story. That is why it is so important to us to carry this culture into the future. As part of the Porsche Strategy 2025, we have developed a clear cultural mission statement. It is anchored in four key values: pioneering spirit, sportiness, a sense of family and something we call “Herzblut” – our passion aligned with the needs of our customers. The focus here is on people. We want this to be our guiding principle in the future as well.
4. WHAT MEANS INNOVATION FOR PORSCHE IN THE NEXT COUPLE OF YEARS?
Innovation has always been part of the brand core of Porsche. A central pillar of our strategy is strengthening this further. That means having a very systematic and structured approach. We are concentrating on fields where Porsche is particularly strong and will also lead the competition in the future, such as design, drive systems, vehicle dynamics and vehicle architecture. At the same time we are developing new business fields and focusing more and more on cooperations, especially in the digitalsegment.
5. WHAT PARTNERSHIPS DOES PORSCHE NEED IN THE FUTURE?
Partnerships are increasingly gaining importance for Porsche, particularly when it comes to topics of future relevance like connectivity, artificial intelligence or new mobility concepts. That is why we systematically scout the international startup scene in order to be able to identify innovative technologies and business models that are a good fit for Porsche at an early stage. We then make them available to us by providing investment. By cooperating with competent partners, also in the form of participations, we are building a strong ecosystem that enables us to target external expertise we want to bring into the company.
6. OUT OF ALL PORSCHE MODELS: WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE AND WHY?
That is a tough one to answer. I can get as excited about the 911 GT3 as I can about the Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid or the Cayenne. And of course it also depends on what I will be using it for. No matter what, I will always be a big 911 fan. And I am particularly looking forward to the Taycan, which is being launched in autumn. I have already been able to try it out a few times, and I am completely hooked: our first pure electric sports car is fantastic to drive – a true Porsche, through and through.