Opinion. Brent Valmar, Kurt Leitner (Porsche Romania): What’s next for automotive in Romania

Newsroom 08/03/2018 | 14:56

Brent Valmar, General Manager Porsche Romania

The automotive industry accompanied Romania’s economic growth over the past 20 years and Porsche Romania contributed to the sector’s evolution. One of the most important achievements of the industry is that the market continued to grow, even after the economic crisis that affected all the sectors and companies in Romania. Since we sold our first car back in 1998 until selling almost 100 electric cars in 2017, we are proud to look back at 20 successful years in Romania and confident the future will be brighter that the past.

Electric mobility is a reality that will be visible all over Europe, including in Romania. The challenge with our market is the unstoppable hunger of the Romanian customer for second hand cars. The current car park in Romania counts approximately 4.6 million active units out of which 76% are older than a decade. Until we reconsider all the negative effects that this situation is having on our market we will have difficulties in adopting electrical cars.

There is a strong interest among car importers to strengthen their offer of electric models. Authorities too, support the trend and offer bonuses for electric cars acquisitions. The first customers will be multinational companies and groups which will renew their fleets with electric and hybrid cars. In parallel, the network of charging stations needs to grow. In the Porsche Romania dealers’ network more and more fast charging stations will be installed until 2020.

On the other hand, the road infrastructure remains one of Romania’s most pressing challenges right now, both on national roads and inside major cities. Especially in city centers, traffic could be improved by implementing car sharing solutions, bike mobility options and by investing in a more efficient public transport. Something that’s already been tested by other European cities is the limited access for cars in the city centers, with benefits not just for relieving traffic congestion but also for reducing pollution. All of these should be included in a national strategy plan for modern mobility solutions in Romania, in order to reach progress.

 

Kurt Leitner, General Manager Porsche Romania

The automotive world is influenced by digitalization and technology. The mega trends that are shaping the market are e-mobility, autonomous driving and connectivity. The industry paradigm is changing as is the way of driving that we know.

Digital services will create new and multiple touch points between our brands and customers. Technological innovation will enable higher levels of safety and convenience as cars better interact with their environments and assist their drivers. The demand for car sharing and ride sharing services will increase more and more as the customers will increasingly choose experience versus ownership.

Internet in the car will be standard and the connected car is going to offer an incredible wide range of opportunities. The control of the status of your car and information about the actual parking position via app on your mobile devices is already a reality. But in future it will go much further, even integrated with emergency services to assist drivers in case of incidents.

Looking at the future, electric cars will become a normal part of our streetscape. Our target for 2025 is to achieve a sales volume of 12,000 electric vehicles per year, of a total of 50,000 units sold. And, of course we’ll provide the whole range of necessary charging infrastructure. Especially in cities where speed is lover, the car itself will more and more takeover the steering wheel.

We are convinced that with our brands and the planned technological innovations and investments, we will make mobility for our customers easier and more convenient and maintain our leadership position on the Romanian market.

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