With the recent addition of the 2012 911 Black Edition and the 2012 Boxster S Black edition, some Porsche fans are wondering why? Is Porsche simply trying to sell more cars? Do they really think that consumers will buy any Porsche just because it's called a limited edition? Sure, creating demand and increasing sales is definitely part of their plan, but it's not the whole picture. In fact, while there's nothing wrong with these questions they take the focus off the real points in our opinion; Value and Buzz.
Porsche Highlights Value
When the 911 and Boxster Black editions were introduced last month, both showcased a feature not usually highlighted by Porsche; Value. Each of these black beauties came standard with a number of tricks and toys that would otherwise be optional in their non-limited brethren. More importantly, and to the point, they are produced this way at a price much less than their similarly equipped production versions.
2012 Boxster S Black Edition Value
Porsche includes in the MSRP a Convenience package (Bi-Xenon headlights with dynamic cornering function, wind deflector, auto dimming interior and exterior mirrors, rain sensor and automatic climate control) and an "infotainment" package featuring a touch-screen PCM system with navigation, BOSE surround sound system and XM Satellite radio (wit the XM NavTraffic). In addition to the comfort items, the black edition comes standard with the lightweight 19" wheels normally found on the Boxster Spyder (painted black of course along with almost every piece of visible trim).
All together, at $65,200, this limited edition of 987 units, saves you $3200 from a similarly equipped Boxster S and does so while adding an additional 10 horsepower (something no option package can offer at any price). With 10 extra horses the Black Edition Boxster S is now on par, power wise, with the Boxster Spyder and the Cayman S (neither of which are limited editions).
2012 911 Black Edition Features and Value
While the 911 Black edition doesn't add horsepower, and the sticker price puts it more than $3k higher than a bare bones Carrera, it does offer a whole host of options (included in the standard price) that would bloat a non-limited Carrera's price tag nearly $10,000. By anyone's math, that's some serious savings. Besides the triple black treatment (paint, interior and wheels), your stealth Carrera comes with 19" Turbo II wheels, a navigation system, BOSE surround, heated power seats, rain-sensing wipers, auto-dimming interior and exterior mirrors and the universal audio interface. At just 1911 units worldwide (maybe 25% coming to the US) these will most likely sell out quickly.
Limited Editions Are Not a New Strategy
Remember the 2004 550 Spyder 50th Edition? Limited to a production run of just 1953 examples this special Boxster was release just prior to the introduction of its successor (the 987) a the 2004 Paris Motor Show. What about the Porsche 911 40th Anniversary Edition? Despite the fact that the all new 997 wasn't too far away, all 1963 units of this spruced up 911 sold out.
With US sales of only 186 Boxsters this January and 436 911 units (representing a 15% decline) Porsche needed to create some additional excitement around these aging models (above and beyond the super hi-end limited releases like the 911 Speedster or 911 GT2 RS). As it's not a closely guarded secret that the 997 will see a replacement in the form of a 991 (and the Boxster is due for a face lift too) what better way than a limited edition that provides a value for the dollar too. If Porsche buyers are waiting on the sidelines for the latest and greatest, the all black limited editions will probably pull them in early.
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