On paper, 2018 sounds like it would be a difficult year for Porsche. The company has completely abandoned diesel and strict WLTP regulations threaten the sales of sports cars and even plug-in hybrids. We'd forgive Porsche for having lower-than-average sales in 2018 but the opposite is true. In fact, nothing seems to be slowing Porsche down as the German automaker trots into October with a significant sales increase. Over the first nine months of the year, Porsche has increased vehicle deliveries by 6% to 196,562 vehicles.
Even in Europe, where many automakers have been struggling due to strict WLPT regulations, Porsche saw a 9% sales increase to 66,551 units including a 13% increase to 24,709 vehicles in its home market of Germany. China too, Porsche's largest single market, saw a sales increase of 4% with 56,254 vehicles delivered. And although the growth wasn't as high as Europe and China, Porsche also saw a 3% increase to 42,626 vehicles in the United States.
“In Germany and Europe overall, our attractive product range meant that we were very well positioned to meet the strong demand for our sports cars in the first nine months,” said Detlev von Platen, Member of the Executive Board for Sales and Marketing. “We are also extremely satisfied with our growth rates in the USA and China.”
Porsche's massive growth was spurred on by an impressive lineup with extremely high demand. The Panamera saw the largest increase in September (up by 60%). Even the 911 saw an increase of 19%, while the volume sellers continue to be the Macan and Cayenne SUVs. Porsche made the decision back in February not sell any more diesel models but strong demand for plug-in hybrids seems to have filled in the void left by diesel.
“There are a number of significant challenges that await us in the fourth quarter, and we will take proactive steps to ensure that we face up to them successfully. This includes the changeover to the new WLTP test cycle and petrol particulate filters and the farewell to diesel engines,” said von Platen. Although other automakers may have had their struggles in 2018, it seems like Porsche is doing just fine.