With the books closing on 2013 and the year's sales figures being announced there are plenty of impressive gains being reported across the car industry, both here in the UK and internationally. And while perhaps unfair to shine the spotlight solely on Porsche to the exclusion of the others, picking apart its sales figures for 2013 paints an interesting picture of the trends in sales of fast and/or luxurious vehicles in terms of what sells and where. This is only one brand of course but the trends and shifts in power can be extrapolated across the industry, Porsche providing a useful reference point on which to focus.
First up? Porsche sold 162,145 cars last year, 14.9 per cent up on the 141,075 it sold in 2012. Asia Pacific, Africa and the Middle East accounted for the biggest share of sales - 61,534 - with Europe slightly ahead of America but the latter recording a much more significant upswing. Breaking the figures down further it's interesting to see Chinese sales of 37,425 closing on the total 42,323 cars sold in the USA, both reporting increases of around 20 per cent.
Put basically, sales are showing small increases in Europe but booming both east and west. But what are people buying?
As ever it's shocking just how small a proportion of Porsche's overall production is made up of sports cars. Saying the 911 was 'especially successful' in its anniversary year even then it accounted for around 33,000 of the total while 22,500 Boxsters and Caymans were sold (+117.4 per cent on 2012), meaning less than a third of Porsche sales were made up of what we'd probably consider traditional product. Meanwhile 84,000-plus Cayennes were sold and by the time the Macan comes on stream and the production line - geared up for 50,000 cars a year - is churning them out the power shift from Stuttgart and its sports cars to Leipzig and its SUVs and saloons will be even more marked.
Nothing we didn't know already of course. But proof, were it ever needed, that Porsche knows on which side its bread is buttered.
Author: Dan Trent