Well, the cat is now out of the bag. The Porsche 718 will go all-electric by 2025 and complement the 911 Hybrid, which won’t be a plug-in. During Porsche’s Annual Press Conference, Oliver Blume, Chairman of the Executive Board of Porsche AG, noted that the development of the battery-electric 718 will be informed by the company’s racing efforts. Blume notes that going all-electric is a natural evolution for the mid-engine sports car, which will likely be built on the PPE platform.
The next Porsche 718 will be inspired by the Mission R concept first shown at the 2021 Munich auto show last year. It will also borrow a lot of technologies from the 919 Hybrid race car including 800-volt charging capability, which first appeared on the Taycan. Porsche is sticking to a same-parts principle for the next 718 family, meaning it can be built on the same line as the 911 in Zuffenhausen, Germany. This will be the third battery-electric vehicle in Porsche’s lineup following the Taycan and the upcoming Macan EV.
Porsche’s powertrain strategy in its racing activities also complements its road car development. It will be using hybrids and battery-electric propulsion systems for the LMDh class and Formula E respectively. The knowledge gained from motor sport competitions will then be used to inform upcoming road cars like the all-electric 718 family and the Macan EV. Blume added that Porsche is committed to electrification and will continue working with Volkswagen Group to achieve its goals. By 2025, the company expects 50 percent of its sales to be made up of electrified vehicles, both hybrids, and BEVs. However, by 2030, that will change because Porsche is targeting an 80 percent share of sales specifically for its battery-electric models.
Battery development will be a crucial part of Porsche’s transformation. The brand will continue to develop and make cells in-house and is already looking for the optimum way to integrate them with the vehicle. A new production facility specifically for its high-performance batteries will be built by the middle of next year, giving Porsche a secure source. One of its partners is Cellforce, a joint venture between Porsche and Customcells GmbH. Their battery production capacity will be initially at 100 MWh by the end of 2024. These packs will be used specifically for high-performance vehicles and race cars, and feature silicone as the anode material. That will allow for significantly higher energy density in a smaller, more compact package. It will also allow for reduced internal resistance, enabling the battery to recapture more energy when recuperating and improving its efficiency during DC charging.
At least for Europe, Porsche is setting up exclusive charging infrastructure for its owners to make charging easier and they’ll be complementing the IONITY network. Nothing has been announced for the U.S. market yet but expect Porsche to continue utilizing Electrify America network and include complimentary charging with the purchase of BEVs like the Taycan.
Porsche’s electrification offensive is about to go into full swing and it’s clear that BEVs are the future. Yes, it’ll have hybrids but they’ll play a smaller role. With the 718 family going all-electric and the arrival of the Macan EV next year, Porsche is covering all of its bases by offering BEVs with mass appeal and ones focused on the driving enthusiast. The Panamera and Cayenne will surely follow the Taycan, Macan, and 718 in the future.