Porsche's electric Taycan draws 30K down payments
Luxury carmaker is facing mounting pressure from Tesla
German luxury carmaker Porsche has drawn interest from tens of thousands of buyers for its first fully electric model as it faces mounting pressure from electric car manufacturer Tesla.
On Wednesday, Porsche announced it received 30,000 down payments from buyers in Europe for the Porsche Taycan, each buyer handing over 2,500 euros each, which equates to nearly $2,800, according to CEO Oliver Blume told who told Germany's Handelsblatt newspaper.
In addition, 10,000 of those buyers have already committed to a firm buy, greatly exceeding company expectations, according to the English translation of Blume's interview with the German newspaper.
"Porsche is currently experiencing a special boom," Blume said.
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Porsche is starting to ship the Taycan to U.S. dealerships this month, followed by other markets shortly after. In 2020, the company plans to deliver 20,000 Taycans, which Blume said is more than the company originally planned for.
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The luxury car comes in three versions: the Taycan 4S with a starting price of $114,340, the Taycan Turbo with a starting price of $154,860 and the Taycan Turbo S for a starting price of $188, 960.
The car was initially unveiled in 2015 as a concept car called Mission E at the International Auto Show in Frankfurt followed by its official unveiling as the Taycan -- which translates to "lively young horse" in Turkish -- at the 2019 International Auto Show in Frankfurt.
The electric cars coincide with the company's goals of sustainability, which the company says is an "equivalent corporate goal" alongside profitability.
"In 2017, we have converted all German facilities to 100 percent natural power. In addition, we use bio and solar energy. That's just the beginning. Our long-term goal is a zero-impact company," Blume said.
Tesla announced its decision to build its first European factory in Germany in November.
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"We've decided to put the Tesla Gigafactory Europe in the Berlin area," Tesla CEO Elon Musk said during an awards ceremony in the German capital.
The company will also set up an engineering and design center in Berlin, Musk said. He wrote on Twitter that the new plant "will build batteries, powertrains & vehicles, starting with Model Y."
The Model Y is a small SUV scheduled to go on sale in the fall of 2020. It will start at $39,000 (35,400 euros) with a range of 230 miles (370 kilometers) per charge.
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The Associated Press contributed to this report.