14th October, 2010
As the news continues to trickle in from Germany about Volkswagenâ€™s â€œgrand planâ€ toÂ absorb Porsche into the VW Empire, itâ€™s shaping up to be a giant bowl of Not Good.
To be blunt, their plans – both simple and scary at the same time – revolve around theÂ idea of using multiple platforms to make Porsche too simple in the interest of gainingÂ more volume and ultimately, more profit.
Now as for generating profitability, I never have a problem with that. Itâ€™s theÂ dumbing-down part that I have a huge problem with. What does this platform sharing reallyÂ mean for Porsche, on the 60th Anniversary of the brand?
I remember issuing a warning (to auto writers though) about the VW takeover of Porsche,Â saying that the official explanation â€“ that the takeover would allow Porsche to surviveÂ and thrive well into the future. That is why I would say itâ€™s natural to get a bitÂ unsettled at the thought that the Cayenne – which already shares underpinnings with theÂ Audi Q7 and the VW Touareg – may be just the tip of the iceberg, and that VW may be readyÂ to attack multiple segments with warmed-over VWs wearing the Porsche crest.
VW has already demonstrated â€“ and repeatedly so, I might add, as their new drive forÂ profitability â€“ and volume â€“ threatens to unleash swarms of mediocre VWs on our landscapeÂ in the pursuit of knocking off the Camry and Accord (as if that was some noble questÂ worth aspiring to), so why should we expect them to all of a sudden demonstrateÂ intelligibility and vision with the stewardship of the Porsche brand?
And now here we are again â€“ and I just have a sickening feeling of yet another loomingÂ VW-Porsche train wreck. Thatâ€™s the truth and nothing but the truth.