In a shocking bit of news, reports are coming out of Malaysia that Porsche is planning to build an assembly line there. If this is true, it will be Porsche's first assembly line in Southeast Asia. It could also have several potential benefits for the Philippines, too.
But before we dive into that, what's the deal with the new (possible) assembly line? According to Malaysian publication The Edge, the plant will Inokom's, a subsidiary of Sime Darby. Sime Darby has several vehicle assembly lines that roll out Fords, Hyundais, BMWs, and even Land Rovers.
Such a development could potentially mean that Porsches built there could be exported to the Philippines and other ASEAN countries to take advantage of the free trade agreements. Case in point: BMW Philippines actually sourced some models from the plants in Malaysia, allowing them to lower prices of certain models such as the 520i Luxury Line. Even Mercedes-Benz now sources from Malaysia with the C 180 Avantgarde.
Regarding the matter, Porsche Asia-Pacific deputy director of corporate communications and spokesperson for production and logistics, The Edge quoted Christian Weiss as saying: “ASEAN is a promising region with great potential, and we continuously examine options for further growth in this market”.
We did not expect a confirmation of the plans, but it's not like he denied it either.
Now, how can this affect us? Should PGA Cars, the distributor of Porsche vehicles in the country, source cars from Malaysia, we might see retail prices of select models go down. We're not expecting legacy or performance models such as the 911, 718 Cayman, and 718 Boxster to be assembled there. It's more likely that the crossovers such as Macan and Cayenne or even the Panamera could be the models being evaluated for assembly.
Also, Malaysia is included in the countries exempted from the safeguard bond. Granted, luxury vehicles with FOB (Freight on Board) prices above $ 25,000 are exempted, but its country of origin makes it safe from that. If Porsche pushes through with Malaysia assembly, the possibly lower prices could result in more Porsche models on our roads in the future.