The launch of the new Porsche Macan electric SUV has been delayed for a year because of slower than expected software development within the wider Volkswagen Group.
The Macan EV will be one of the first production cars to use Porsche and Audi’s Premium Platform Electric (PPE) architecture, but Porsche has now confirmed that it won’t be released until 2024.
Problems surrounding the production of the E3 1.2 software platform by Cariad, the software division of the Volkswagen Group, are partly to blame for that delay.
Porsche confirmed the news in the shares prospectus it issued as part of its IPO last month – when it made 911 million shares available (a nod to its flagship sports car).
The flotation valued Porsche at roughly €75 billion (about £65bn).
The delay could also knock back the launch timetable of “in particular BEV models of the 718 [Porsche Boxster and Porsche Cayman] and the Porsche Cayenne”, Porsche warned in the prospectus. No launch timetable has been given for those cars, though.
Also in the prospectus, Porsche warned that Cariad’s parallel development of a separate E3 2.0 software stack meant that it “could potentially allocate greater development capacity and resources to its E3 2.0 version to the detriment of further development of the E3 1.2 platform”.
Porsche has an option to not take the E3 2.0 software stack and go its own way for future vehicles, it noted in the prospectus, and a decision on this is to be made next year.
Porsche has been vocal in the past about not being tied to the Volkswagen Group’s future platform strategy – both physical and digital – particularly with the Scalable Systems Platform (SSP) for EVs, which will ultimately replace the PPE.
Porsche has said it will lead development of a performance version platform called SSP Sport, which will underpin the next Panamera and Taycan, as well as an unnamed “new fully electric luxury SUV model”.
Ultimately, Porsche will shift all of its SUV and saloon models to the PPE and there will be “a bespoke architecture for two-door sports cars”.
Porsche said in its prospectus that “the launch of the SSP Sport will not depend on other SSP platforms developed by the Volkswagen Group”, indicating that it will move at its own speed in future, possibly because it plans to separate from the rest of the group on software strategy.
Porsche has said it expects more than 50% of cars delivered in 2025 to be electrified, rising to 80% fully electric by 2030.
Last year, EVs (all of them Taycan derivatives) comprised 14% of Porsche sales, while plug-in hybrids took 11%.
The Macan EV will use a similar 800V electrical architecture to the Taycan “with improvements in range”, said Porsche.
Porsche started testing the SUV in May 2021. It will be built at its Leipzig factory, where the petrol Macan is produced.