Porsche is nearing fix to 911 (991) GT3 glitch

Article by Christian Andrei, on March 17, 2014

Porsche AG is nearing a fix to a glitch that caused engine fires in a racing version of the 911 sports car. “We know the reason and the problem-solving measures,” chief executive Matthias Mueller said. “We’re testing them.” He said that Porsche is planning to disclose the technical solution “shortly” and then inform its customers.

Porsche recalled all 785 examples of 911 GT3 from the current model year in February after two instances of fires due to engine failures. Porsche has requested owners stop driving their 911 GT3 pending repairs. No accidents or injuries were tied to the incidents, Porsche said at the time.

The division is expecting its earnings for 2014 to be “at least” at the 2013 level amid investments to expand its sales operations in the China and the United States and production in Germany. Porsche posted a 6-percent rise in operating profit in 2013 to EUR2.58 billion, generating an 18-percent return on sales. The figure at Volkswagen Group, meanwhile, was 5.9 percent.

Cost savings from cooperation with Volkswagen, which took full control of Porsche in mid-2012, will “get close” to a EUR1 billion goal as soon as 2014, Mueller said. Chief Financial Officer Lutz Meschke said that synergies would soon exceed that amount. Porsche’s investments abroad this year will concentrate on adding distribution in emerging markets, with 30 new dealerships intended for China by 2015.

The carmaker said it would invest a total of $100 million in the US, without specifying a time frame. Porsche will invest EUR300 million to add a new engine production line by 2016 as well as to expand offices at its Zuffenhausen site, as part of a EUR700 million investment at the site. Porsche is also investing EUR100 million annually at its research center in Weissach.

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