Porsche is renowned for producing cars that meet and exceed the exacting specifications of our community. That is one of the reasons why they have only introduced their first full performance electric vehicle – the Tesla killer, Taycan – this year.
Over 10 years ago U.S. Senator Al Gore released ‘An Inconvenient Truth’ which brought damning climate change statistics into the public eye. Since then there has been an increasing drive to reduce carbon footprint with some of the biggest targets being the auto manufacturers. New automotive buzz words like exhaust emissions, nitrous oxides, and zero impact assembly began to emerge. The culmination of this gradual groundswell could possibly be the latest wave of Fridays For Future protests that occurred around the world.
Internal combustion engines are inefficient, pollutant, and fun. As proud car enthusiasts, we love to celebrate this invention and what it has done for personal transportation. In the same breath though, its glory days are over. To quote Billy Joel, “The good old days weren’t always good, and tomorrow isn’t as bad as it seems.”
To stay at the forefront of innovation you have to invest in research and development. A classic engineering maxim is, ‘don’t reinvent the wheel’ and Porsche are following this to the letter with their recent increase in their investment into a company called Rimac Automobili.
If you haven’t heard of this company it would be no surprise since they only started out properly in 2009. It all happened because of a BMW e30. Rimac, a Croatian car enthusiast, owned one of these icons and blew its engine in the late 2000s. Instead of doing the conventional thing and rebuilding the motor, he decided to go in another direction and converted it to an electric powertrain.
The ‘green monster’ as the car was then dubbed proceeded to become the fastest accelerating electric vehicle of its class with a 0-60 in under 3.3 seconds! This attracted the attention of the press and investors so Rimac Automobili was born. Currently designing bespoke performance electric vehicles with a limited production run, Rimac is on the leading edge of the innovation curve in electric drive trains and battery technology.
Porsche (and Hyundai) have both invested in the company with Porsche increasing their stake this year to 15.5 %. According to Lutz Meschke, head of IT and Finance at Porsche, the companies can learn a lot from each other and will be collaborating closely on battery technology. This is currently the single biggest ‘Achilles heel’ when it comes to the continued growth and development of electric vehicles. The ongoing problem of range, battery lifespan, and safety concerns lead to ever-increasing research and development in this field.
Porsche is a multi-dimensional organization and they are usually modest about what they are doing on the environmental front, preferring to drop bombshells like the Taycan. In addition to this, they also support several carbon offset initiatives to help your Porsche ownership give back to the planet. The future is electric. Anyone who doesn’t think so should pay a visit to Tesla or test drive the Taycan. The question no longer is what Porsche is doing for the environment, but what are you?