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Porsche Returning to Detroit Auto Show

Four years after pulling out of the Detroit Auto Show, Porsche is set to return in 2011, and will feature an all new concept vehicle debuting alongside GMC's Sierra HD concept truck. The German automaker pulled out in dramatic fashion four years back, but a lot has changed since then. One thing that has changed is the development of some sort of "spectacular" super car, according to a company spokesperson [1]. The company is coming back with a concept that is completely new.

According to reports that have been floating around in the weeks before the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, a new super car concept will debut under the Porsche nameplate at the show. There has been some speculation that the super car will be some sort of updated version of the 918 Spyder that debuted in Geneva last March. That car was based on a hybrid platform, and speculation is that this version might be a conventional gas powered platform, one that would be much closer to production ready [1].

Porsche Marketing More in U.S.

One of the possible reasons for the return of the German automaker to the North American International Auto Show is the renewed effort of the Volkswagen Group to market more in the U.S. in an attempt to drum up more sales. Porsche is owned by Volkswagen, as are Audi and Bentley. The Volkswagen Group is trying to increase its market share in the U.S. luxury segment.

This strategy has accompanied other luxury brand's concurrent efforts to get back to pushing their high end cars again in the U.S after sort of getting away from it for the past few years. It could be an indication that economists in the employ of the automakers are expressing confidence in the continuing recovery of the economy across the country. It is almost ironic that in Detroit of all places, in the auto capital which has struggled so mightily in recent years, this high end brand would choose to return like a prodigal, and to come back to promote some sort of unimaginable car like the Spyder.

Economic Trends and Car Shows

In recent years attendance has been down at these types of events, particularly in Detroit. One thing that will definitely be worth watching when January comes is the attendance figures at the North American International Auto Show. Pundits might be able to pick up some sense of the mood of the average group auto insurance customer in one of the state's hit hardest by the recent recession. If there is one event that can maybe perfectly capture a spirit of recovery and optimism, this could be the one.

The domestic automakers are rolling out some big debuts of their own in Detroit in January, so it is clear that they have not tightened up their purse strings in the current market but rather if anything have loosened them up somewhat. This is in keeping with general trends around the national economy among many major players in the market. It is fun to think about the auto show in Michigan as a sort of microcosm of the way things are going economically, but that is exactly what it could prove to be.

If the show is a success and tons of people come to see the new 918 or whatever Porsche will be offering up, surely the German automaker will be back again in 2012. But if attendance and general interest in the show are low again, one has to wonder if this return will be permanent and whether the automaker will ride out Detroit's rough patch.

[1] Retrieved 2010-12-26.


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