Even the most die-hard electric vehicle skeptic has to admit it took guts for Porsche to rip the band-aid off and make one of its most popular and lucrative global models, the Porsche Macan, all-electric only for 2024 and beyond. But so far, the move seems to be paying off. 

Volkswagen Group and Porsche brand CEO Oliver Blume said today that early orders of the newly electric Macan have far exceeded expectations, and the numbers aren't even in yet for some of its biggest potential markets.

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Porsche is expanding into EVs very quickly with the newly all-electric Macan and updated Taycan. An electric 718 sports car and Cayenne SUV are expected in the coming years, as is a larger seven-seat Porsche SUV. As for the 911, the company plans to keep that internal combustion as long as it possibly can. 

"We’re overwhelmed by orders coming in for the electric Macan," Blume said at the brand's annual press conference and 2023 recap in Leipzig today. "We’re confident it’s going to be a hit." 

Blume added that in the four weeks since the new Macan made its debut, Porsche has received more than 10,000 orders for the car, a figure that doesn't count China, Taiwan or Japan yet. “The people ordering this haven’t touched this car, haven't driven this car," he said. "This also shows the substance of this product, that we can follow up the success of the Taycan.”

The Macan's battery-powered rebirth is a very big deal for the German automaker. The Macan is the second best-selling worldwide model in the entire Porsche family behind the larger Cayenne, as well as Porsche's best-selling model in the U.S. Though Porsche will continue selling the existing gas-powered Macan in the U.S.—but not in Europe due to the car no longer meeting stricter cybersecurity regulations—the all-new model will be electric-only. And it's heavily implied that's where Porsche's future lies. 

Gallery: 2024 Porsche Macan EV New US Photos

Part of Porsche's gamble here lies in the fact that the electric Macan is nearly $20,000 more expensive than the gas-powered crossover it replaces. To be fair, it is significantly more powerful than the old Macan and boasts a completely revamped software suite. But the price increase—it now starts at $78,800 in the U.S.—seems to fit with what Porsche executives said today was a strategy of going more "upscale" with EVs to achieve higher profit margins.

"We’ve always said when we move to [electric vehicles], we will have the same demands of profitability," Porsche's Chief Financial Officer Lutz Meschke said today. 

As with any investor-focused annual meeting, profitability was very much top of mind today. Porsche had a very good and very profitable year in 2023, its first full financial year since its 2022 initial public offering. Even sales of the Porsche Taycan, its original EV and one due for a significant overhaul this year, were up 17% to more than 40,000 globally, Blume said.

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Still, Porsche executives were circumspect about current economic conditions, including challenges in its own supply chain and slowing sales in China as that country's economy endures a real-estate crisis and car buyers increasingly turn to homegrown brands. Meschke said the company expects China's economy to rebound later this year or in 2025, but reaffirmed that Porsche won't follow suit with the price cuts seen there. 

This year will end up being one of the most important ones for Porsche in recent memory, as it kicks off a near-total overhaul of its entire lineup by 2025. That lineup will eventually also include an electric Cayenne SUV, an electric 718 sports car and a new electric seven-seat SUV that Blume said "will be the sportiest in its segment." Blume also reaffirmed the updated 911 will have, or be a hybrid model, but Porsche is also taking controversial steps to keep it ICE-powered as long as possible.

Blume reaffirmed Porsche's commitment to having global sales be more than 80% electric by 2030, but with the usual caveats that auto industry leaders have offered more and more of lately. "We stand by our strategy," he said, but "that is very much dependent on [demand] in the world regions... in Europe, we see a flattening of the growth curve." 

Nonetheless, Blume offered more optimism about the EV market than the opposite, especially in the long term. "We think the ramp-up of electro-mobility is vital for our path forward," he said. "Future EVs will be much superior to ICE vehicles."

Contact the author: patrick.george@insideevs.com

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