Sana’a. December 20: Porsche Middle East, now the fifth largest subsidiary of Stuttgart, Germany-based Porsche AG, the smallest, independent automobile manufacturer in the world, today officially opened the doors of its new Sana’a showroom, located on Haddad Street. The Porsche exclusive showroom, built to international corporate standards, is owned and managed by NATCO, itself a well known veteran within the automotive business in Yemen, with other car franchises also under its jurisdiction in the country.
Business prospects look bright for all involved with Porsche in Yemen, where enthusiasm for the brand runs high. Since April this year when NATCO initially became the official importer in Yemen, twenty Porsche vehicles have been delivered to customers in the country.
Mr. Nabil Hayel Saeed, general manager of the Porsche Center, is optimistic. Sales, he says, of the company product range will continue to grow. Of course, given the terrain in Yemen the Cayenne will always be the most popular model in the country but he feels that once the market becomes more familiar with Porsche sports cars, sales in those sectors will also rise.
Porsche Yemen has also focused on the after sales side of the business and has concurrently opened a dedicated Porsche workshop located not far away where Porsche trained mechanics are available to answer questions and queries and to handle any maintenance of the vehicles required.
Officials at Dubai-based Porsche Middle East said that the recent demand in Yemen for the company’s new all-road SUV, the Cayenne, precipitated the move into Yemen. “There have always been Porsche aficionados in Yemen,” said Mark Bishop, Porsche Middle East’s managing director, “And now with the advent of the Cayenne into the Porsche line up just two years ago, it made perfect sense to enter the market here in Yemen where we gauge business to have very good potential; we are thrilled to be part of the automotive ‘development movement’ here.”
The Cayenne Turbo with a 4.5 litre V8 bi-turbo engine and a top speed of 266 km/h is at the top of the range, complemented by the Cayenne S with a top speed of 242 km/h and the entry model with a V6 engine, the Cayenne, which tops 214 km/h.
NATCO anticipates selling a sizeable number of Cayenne SUVs during 2005 and beyond as demand is on the increase in Yemen for luxury all wheel drive vehicles. They will also supply customers with sports cars from the extended Porsche family of vehicles. This includes celebrated models from the Boxster and the 911 ranges, ranging in price and performance from the powerful roadster, the Boxster, with a 2.7 litre engine all the way up to the 911 Turbo.
Prices for the vehicles will be in harmony with those in the rest of the Middle East, subject to local taxation
“Yemen,” Bishop said, “Offers unexplored potential and we have high hopes for our future growth. Driving pleasure, a lot of fun and perhaps even the promise of unexplored roads and routes are just a few of the things on the menu for Porsche customers here. I believe Yemen is ready for Porsche.”
So rev those engines Sana’a for, “A Porsche customer is usually a customer for life; we are certain we will have many such lifelong friends in Yemen very soon,” concluded Bishop with a smile.
Report from 28/02/2005
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