Such a model has been predicted from the German sports car brand for a while, as a potential third family member of the Panamera range alongside the sedan(ish) model that launched recently, and the confirmed Sport Turismo wagon due in the coming years.
Michael Steiner, Porsche member of the executive board for research and development, told CarAdvice at the 2016 Paris motor show that the idea is a good one - it’s just a matter of whether there are better ideas that could precede it.
“There is no clear answer in terms of timing, in terms of the conceptual design of the new Panamera. We have technically all the capabilities to be competitive concept-wise and performance-wise with a car like that,” Steiner said.
“Our architecture at least has flexibility – on the one hand we could do a hybrid of every engine with this concept; on the second hand we could do different body styles and wheelbases with this so-called MSB platform.
“It is decided right now we will have the long wheelbase, and we do [with the sedan]. And that we will have a Sport Turismo [station wagon] and there will be some additional drivetrain derivatives or engine derivatives in the future,” he said.
That architecture is flexible enough to be used not only by Porsche, but Audi. The four-ring brand is apparently planning to use it underneath the first-ever Audi A9 luxury coupe.
“Also at least one additional brand from the Volkswagen Group will use this MSB platform for their models, so if you would like to know more about their plans, you could ask them,” he said of the upcoming Audi A9. “I don’t think it’s fair to talk too much about your brother.”
When asked if he feels there’s a true need for such a car in the Porsche stable, Steiner suggested there was very little question that it would sell.
“For sure there would be a market for a car like that, and this business is much about proportions, about the look. And the Panamera platform has the cheats where you could do a coupe,” he said.
“In the past times we did a lot of conceptual investigation, which segment, which derivatives would be the next market for Porsche. And we were, over the last years, very successful in doing the business step by step – the Cayenne, the Panamera, the Macan and the Mission E project. Also doing some new derivatives.
“But finally we have to have in mind that there is a huge change in business in terms of electrification and battery driven cars. So with given funding or investment in research and development we have to decide which will be the next step,” Steiner said.
“A coupe would be in competition to other segments we would attack. We have it on our radar, but there is no decision by now – and there are also pretty attractive alternatives, and maybe even more in electrification,” he asserted.