Porsche aims to double its annual U.S. sales within seven years by dramatically expanding its product lineup — while maintaining its U.S. dealer body at almost the same size.
"By 2018, we will sell around 50,000 cars in the U.S.," Detlev von Platen, CEO of Porsche Cars North America, said in an interview with Automotive News Europe.
Last year, Porsche sold 25,320 vehicles in the United States, a market that represents 28 percent of its global sales. Von Platen expects sales of "more than 29,000 units" this year and counts on a strong product offensive to boost volume.
Porsche will launch three models in the U.S. next year: the redesigned 911 in February; the 430-hp Panamera GTS, which arrives next spring; and a Cayenne diesel, Porsche's first diesel-powered model offered in the U.S., which arrives in the second half of the year.
Porsche expects the Cayenne diesel to account for about 15 percent of the total SUV's sales, a volume similar to that expected for the Cayenne gasoline-electric hybrid, which launched a year ago and now makes up about 12 percent of total Cayenne sales.
For the recently launched Panamera hybrid, von Platen also expects roughly 15 percent of the total flagship's sales volume. He said Porsche has not yet decided whether to introduce a diesel version of the Panamera in the United States.
Also in 2013, Porsche will start the sales of the Cajun, a crossover that will be a smaller sibling to the Cayenne.
Von Platen said he is confident that Porsche will boost its U.S. sales despite worries about the economy. "We expect strong growth in the U.S., which is an established, mature market. I hate this doom and gloom attitude. I believe in the U.S.," he said.
Porsche will also hire about 60 more people by 2015 in the U.S. to help secure its growth plans. The carmaker currently employs about 400 people in the U.S., including its financial services and motorsports business units.
Von Platen confirmed the automaker is looking to "slightly consolidating" the dealer network structure over the next few years. In April, Bernhard Maier, Porsche's global sales and marketing chief, told Automotive News Europe that the dealer network may be reduced to 190 outlets from 200.
"We have to ensure the consistency of the brand's representation and customer experience," he said. "On average, our dealers now earn a 3.6 percent return on sales. And we want to keep it over 3 percent."
Globally, Porsche has 700 dealers and plans to add 200 to 300 retail outlets to help reach its goal of doubling annual sales to 200,000 in 2018 from 95,000 last year.