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Porsche to probe Australian prices

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    The basic Cayman manual is priced from $115,500 as a six-speed manual in Australia. Photo Gallery

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Porsche is promising an investigation into its Australian prices.

The move has been announced following the unveiling of its impressive new Cayman coupe at the LA Auto Show.

The good looking Cayman was one of the show's stars but the American base price of $52,600 is less than half the $115,000 starting sticker it will wear down under. When the difference is highlighted by Carsguide to Porsche's global boss, Matthias Mueller, he immediately promises an investigation.
"I didn't know this. I will get answers," Mueller says.

Porsche's premium pricing policy down under comes at a time when many of its luxury rivals are cutting their tabs. Mercedes-Benz consistently brings newer models to showrooms with lower prices and even Rolls-Royce recently cut the bottom line on its flagship Phantom, but a staggering amount of more than $200,000.

The good news from LA is that the new Cayman is closer than ever to the classic Porsche 911, in both design and performance. There is also extra equipment in a bigger cabin, and even 15 per cent better fuel economy. The new design also makes it much more than just a baby Boxster with a coupe roof.

"In short, the new version is lighter, more powerful and more fuel efficient. It is more distinctive than ever. It delivers an unmatched combination of driving dynamics," Mueller. The preview of the Cayman in Porsche heartland in California comes at the end of a year when the company has also put an all-new 911 and Boxster on the road. Production of the second-generation Cayman coupe will not begin until the first quarter of next year, with local delivers in the third quarter.

"This has been a milestone year for Porsche. Globally, this has been a record setting year," says Mueller. "We have sold 160,000 cars. This is the best possible proof of the customer desire for our outstanding sports cars." The Cayman does the job too, and Porsche has allowed it to creep closer to the 911 in size and style. That's no surprise, since the basic mechanical package is shared with the big brother.

The styling is more mature and the body sits over a chassis that is longer and wider than before, just like the Boxster, with a basic 2.7-litre engine and a 3.4 in the Cayman S. The starter engine makes 202 kiloWatts with economy of 8.2 litres/100km and a 0-100km/h time of 5.6 seconds as a six-speed manual, while the Cayman S numbers are 239, 8.8 and 5.0.

The car retains the mid-engine layout it shares with the Boxster and that, says Porsche's technical chief Wolfgang Hatz is the big difference from the 911. "For me, the 911 is a car that people use as their first car, where the Cayman is a second car. The 911 is a two-plus-two and that is the difference," Hatz says. 

The basic Cayman manual is priced from $115,500 as a six-speed manual in Australia, with the bottom line rising to $155,700 for the Cayman S with a six-speed PDK manumatic transmission.

Comments on this story

Displaying 3 of 21 comments

  • Astonishing - am very close to buying a Porsche, only to read this. That is now on hold until we see Matthias Mueller's response. The explanation needs to be very good, or we need to see a serious revisit of pricing. Can one really purchase a Carrera S in the USA for $88,000? A gentle reminder, the Aussie dollar has been above parity with the US $ for quite some time. Matthiaus and Porsche, please explain and/or correct this position. One wouldn't want to think we Aussies have been taking for a ride. I really like the car I was looking at. Please restore our/my faith. Tiger.

    Tiger Posted on 02 March 2013 10:54pm
  • Cars Guide did you ever here back from Matthias Mueller re pricing? ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- We're still waiting and asking. - Ed.

    Davo of Sydney Posted on 20 February 2013 4:51pm
  • I have just returned from the United States. A Porsche Carreras S is $88,000 us and $290.000 here. I contacted Porsche Australia and asked them to explain the difference. After a few weeks later a email was sent saying that it is a complicated question to answer. I sent back saying cancel my Gt3 order. Ridiculous.

    Doug Martin of Sydney Posted on 03 February 2013 6:26pm
  • Totally agree with all the comments above. I think Boy Cott is best! the Giant Rip off goes back such a long way.. 1970s maybe. So now they run peurile adverts about customers living and enjoying life .....after they jack up the prices even more! Pathetic!

    Lost Sporter of Sydney Posted on 27 January 2013 8:50pm
  • Well below the LCT threshold, just a rip off. We need a national boycott of all imported "luxury" cars. 3 months would have them reviewing their pricing.

    Boy Cott of Queensland Posted on 31 December 2012 11:15pm
  • So Porsche had a 911 on display at Westfield Sydney last month...spoke to the Rep and he stated Porsche absolutely screws us. The dealership had Porsche German Team out recently and when they asked about pricing the guys just smiled and walked away. Pathetic!

    Davo of Sydey Posted on 14 December 2012 9:13pm
  • Here's the answer. Because they know the suckers in the Australian market will pay $115K rather than go with the competition. You can bet if they don't get the volume shift they want the price will drop (though will still not match US prices). It would be could if CarsGuide did a price/feature comparison on a range of models here and their equivalent overseas prices.

    Steve Posted on 07 December 2012 11:38pm
  • Wow that's a such a big price difference! Shameful really!

    FastNFurious of Australia Posted on 07 December 2012 12:42pm
  • you hear all the crap from the importers about freight and blah blah, truth be known we are just getting price gouged. BMW, Mercedes Benz - all of them come up with a load of garbage to defend their local prices. Sure the Australian government taxes luxury cars BUT that tax is based on the price of the car. If the Porsche arrived here at $52k it would not attract LCT and would sell like hotcakes whether a good car or bad!!!

    Shipo of Sydney Posted on 06 December 2012 9:09pm
  • I wait with bated breath to see what the outcome is. Premium cars have always had a huge uplife when sold here in Oz. Do we honestly think we will be able to purchse for a similar price then the USA? Take a look a the prices of BMWs in the USA and compare with the prices here in Oz. You will be shocked!

    TheRealist of Oz Posted on 06 December 2012 11:19am
  • Yes, yet another example of the "Great Aussie Rip-Off". When exactly is the Government going to put an end to this nonsense and allow parallel imports?

    Rob Posted on 06 December 2012 3:20am
  • about time, cut out the middle men!

    Rob of melbourne Posted on 05 December 2012 11:11pm
  • Like much in this country, everyone seems to think they have a right to pump prices. Especially while gullible fools pay the money being asked. Add to that uncompetitive finance products which have leases on vehicles compared to the USA at almost double the payments per month???

    Mark Priestley of Hamilton Posted on 05 December 2012 10:56pm
  • I would buy this car for $52600 + GST in an instant. I am sure, however, that Porsce would not even try to trim the price by any significant amount, and it won't even go under $100K. I am also sure they probably have good modeling in place that shows this is how they'll make most $$ in this country. Think about it... if $50K are pure profits at current pricing and if they go for, say $5K profit only... they'll have to sell 10 times more cars while, at the same time, destroying sales of sporty VW and Audi cars - both being sister companies (or actually all 3 are brands one big company)

    Miki Posted on 05 December 2012 9:00pm
  • Ha! that is rich, of course he knew this, we are one of the highest priced porsche markets in the world. There will be no investigation, this was just to create an article, no prices will fall. A cayman will still be well over $100K and so will the Cayene despite being worth far less in many countries

    Nick Epstein of Melbourne Posted on 05 December 2012 8:22pm
  • After spending time in Hawaii I came home so angry rhat we are so ripped off in Aus on car prices. Hawaii is the most expensive of the US states and the most remote island in the world and their car prices are a lot less than what we are being asked to pay. With all the excuses about shipping costs and all the other bulls--t we need to tell them we have had enough. Australians need to speak up and let the car manufacturers know we are sick of being ripped off, we are doing it with the online shopping so lets let them know enough in enough.

    Sick of em of Springfield Qld Posted on 05 December 2012 7:11pm
  • Import Taxes are huge in this country & these cars are for the wealthy anyway. The fact is everything's plastic now so cars should be cheaper shouldnt they. Half the technology has been around for years but they just update it.

    Raj of Australia Posted on 05 December 2012 6:47pm
  • ha ha. you guys are comedy gold. I have to pay money for tickets for stuff this funny. Porsche will look at it prices (with a view to lowering them). Stop it you guys! I cant stop laughing.

    keezee of Melbourne Posted on 05 December 2012 6:37pm
  • About bloody time. The differential pricing (or price arbitrage) between Australian cars and the equivalent car in England (RH drive - add a little bit for shipping) cannot be justified. Why can't we purchase a car in England and ship it here - it is the exact same car - we can for anything else - enough of this market protection for the imported car industry. Why not ask the same question of Harley Davidson, Ducati, etc as well. We should not be paying double what these items are worth in the USA, etc.

    Craig Woodman of Perth, WA Posted on 05 December 2012 6:35pm
  • How can this be so, that in the US the price is less than half that of one inAus. The Aus dollar is 104Us, what is going on?? We are really taken for fools in this country.

    Tashee of Sunshine Coast. Posted on 05 December 2012 6:31pm
  • Porsche Australia can't believe their luck! Us Aussie muppets will pay $265,000 for a base 911 Carrera, that sells for the equivalent of $100,000 in the UK, including 20% VAT. But you can bet they won't be dropping their prices because they have the monopoly on the importation of Porsche cars to Australia, as granted to them by the Federal Govt. Porsche GB on the other hand has to compete with Porsche dealers in every other European country so it has to keep it's pricing in line with them. Until the Federal Government abolishes the import monopolies, Aussie car buyers will continue to pay some of the world's highest car prices. And don't expect Porsche, Mercedes, BMW, Audi, et al to do anything until they're forced to.

    Johnno of Brisbane Posted on 05 December 2012 6:18pm
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