Porsche to locally assemble its vehicles in Malaysia, first CKD models expected to ship in 2022
Porsche has confirmed that its expansion plans in Asia will include a 'small-scale local assembly in Malaysia to join the company's network of production sites' following reports of the German carmaker's intention to set-up CKD operations here earlier this year.
According to a press release issued straight out of Stuttgart, the vehicles that undergo their final assembly here will specifically match local requirements and be sold in Malaysia only, leaving export markets out of the equation, for the time being at least. Naturally, Sime Darby Berhad, parent company of Porsche distributor Sime Darby Auto Performance (SDAP), will be Porsche's main partner in this CKD venture, which will likely take place in Kulim, Kedah.
“We’re fortunate that, due to careful planning, our existing factories are more than up to the task of meeting current and future global demand for our cars,” says Albrecht Reimold, Member of the Executive Board for Production and Logistics at Porsche.
“However, the new assembly site in Malaysia meets specific market needs and, although a standalone project and modest in size and capacity, it signals our willingness to learn and adapt to specific local market conditions.”
According to Detlev von Platen, Member of the Executive Board for Sales and Marketing at Porsche, the first locally assembled models should reach Malaysian customers in 2022. "“As Porsche is moving into a new era of mobility, Malaysia and the ASEAN region are gaining an increasing importance. This step now is part of a long-standing initiative to keep pace with rapidly evolving customer and market demands,” he added.
So, the big question now is what these models are going to be, and whether the likes of BMW and Mercedes should be concerned.
As we speculated earlier, SUVs such as the Macan and Cayenne seem to be the most obvious candidates given their standing as Porsche's best-selling models here and across the globe. There may be a case for the Panamera as well, while the Taycan, which is broadening the brand's appeal to new audiences all over the world, could be primed for local assembly should the government offer sufficient tax incentives to justify the investment for EV production facilities.
Which CKD Porsche do you have your eyes on?