BY MOST standards, Porsche had a tough time of it in 2018.
Its most popular models were in runout, it had all kinds of issues with supply due to new WLTP emissions testing and it withdrew a bunch of diesel-engined models from sale in the rumbling aftershocks of Dieselgate.
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For any other manufacturer, those are the excuses that you go cap in hand with to the board. Not Porsche. It once again had record sales in 2018. How?
It’s hardly news that Porsche is now a company that builds SUVs with a sideline in sports cars. No matter how much they’ll proclaim the opposite, the numbers speak for themselves.
Of the 256,255 cars Porsche delivered last year, Cayenne and Macan SUVs contributed 157,489 to that number. Despite sales dropping by 11 percent year on year, the runout-model Macan was still Porsche’s best seller, shifting 86,031 units, which is quite amazing given that it didn’t even exist five years ago.
Porsche’s flagship sports car, the 911, could have been forgiven for shedding a few sales given that an all-new 992 generation car is replacing the 991 version, but new models like the Carrera T helped swell final full year sales for this model to 35,573, up 10 percent against last year.
The 718 Boxster and Cayman models tracked fairly flat, down one percent, with 25,114 cars finding new owners, which left the biggest success story of the lot, the new Panamera. This saw sales step up by 38 percent from 27,942 in 2017 to 38,443, in the process overtaking the 911 for the first time ever.
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To put these numbers into perspective, back when the 991-generation 911 was first shown in 2010, Porsche sold 95,564 cars. Within one 911 shape, the company has multiplied its sales by two and a half times.
That’s incredible. Even more amazing is the fact that in 1995, Porsche sold 19,262 cars. The company’s come a long way and it has its SUVs to thank for providing the coin. Love ‘em or hate ‘em, you can’t help but respect them.