Panamera sales give Porsche something to smile about
LEIPZIG // It has not been the greatest year in Porsche's illustrious car-making history. After earlier stockpiling Volkswagen shares in a move to mount an audacious takeover of its mass market sibling, Porsche was forced into an ignominious U-turn after its net debt mushroomed and its access to further credit dried up as global financial markets contracted. Worse was to follow with news earlier this month that VW had acquired a 49.9 per cent stake in the luxury car maker and underlined its commitment to merging Porsche into VW's operations within two years. Finally, some good news then, with the car maker announcing it has already manufactured the 10,000th Panamera luxury saloon at its Leipzig plant. Production of the four-seater only began three months ago and Porsche had planned to build 20,000 units a year, but demand for the good-looking Panamera has been surprisingly strong.