By Drew Johnson
Monday, May 14th, 2012 @ 12:04 pm
 
Porsche says it has dropped plans for a new entry-level sports car that would have slotted beneath the Boxster. Porsche scrapped plans for the car amid fears that a cheaper model could dilute the brand's image.

A Porsche insider revealed that the sub-Boxster model, believed to be called the 551, was on the production path just days ago, but the automaker's CEO squashed hopes for a cheaper roadster model in a recent interview with Germany's Stuttgarter Zeitung.

"We would do no good to the brand if we were to lose traditional Porsche customers" by pursuing a smaller Boxster model,Porsche CEO Matthias Mueller said in a report published on Saturday.

Porsche's decision to can the 551 could also mean the end for the proposed Volkswagen Bluesport and the Audi R5. VW Group previously stated that it needed all three divisions to be on board in ordered to make a business case for developing an all-new mid-engine platform.

Although a smaller Boxster may not be in Porsche's immediate future, Mueller confirmed that a small version of the Panamera sedan is in the works. However, Mueller added that the Pajun (which stands for Panamera Junior) is likely five or six years out from production, which actually lines up with previous reports.

Porsche will begin its downsizing efforts next year with the sub-Cayenne Macan SUV.