Volkswagens pretty little Concept Bluesport mid-engined two-seater roadster is still under serious consideration for production, a senior company insider told as at the Los Angeles show, but it will require Audi and Porsche to introduce versions to make it a viability.
Everybody within the company wants to do it, but it has to stand up as a business proposition, our source said. Devotees of the project go right to the VW Groups top man, Dr Ferdinand Piech.
He said production would need to be about 50,000 a year to make it pay a figure Volkswagen would be unlikely to be able to sell on its own. Audi suggested it is interested when it showed the e-tron electric concept car based on the same architecture last year, but so far we have seen nothing from Porsche.
However, Porsche chief Matthias Muller says it is up to VW and Audi to decide if they can make a case for production. The architecture will be developed in Weissach (Porsches research and development centre), he said. How much volume do they need to participate?
Muller said no decision had yet been made on whether a small mid-engined Porsche to sit below the Cayman and Boxster would go ahead, but with its layout it be fully in keeping with the brands values.
Muller admitted that a model of what it might look like existed, but said it would not be shown publicly. We do not like to give ideas to competitors, he said. We have all the facts and figures to allow us to make a decision and in the first quarter of 2011 we will decide on our new product strategy and cycle plan for the next decade.