Porsche will phase in production at its main factories in Zuffenhausen and Leipzig, Germany, starting on May 4, with operations at both sites set to ramp up incrementally in the following weeks. The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic forced the sports car maker to halt production in the two plants on March 21—initially for only two weeks. But bottlenecks in global supply chains caused the factories to remain closed for six weeks.
In restarting production, Porsche is taking all required measures to guarantee the best possible safety for employees so that operations can be increased in stages until reaching full capacity. The adapted processes in production, logistics and procurement have been agreed with the company’s works council and health management department, with the requirements of each authority to be observed.
Among these are that employees on the production line are required to keep a minimum distance of 1.5 meters from one another, follow basic rules of conduct, and wear a face mask in defined work areas. Measures implemented during the initial suspension of production—like increased mobile working arrangements, reliance on video conferences and a ban on business travel—will remain in force until further notice.
“The restart is an important signal for our employees as well as for our customers. We have monitored and analyzed the situation very carefully right from the start and flexibly adapted processes. Now is the right time to look forward with optimism and to resume work—subject to special precautions,” said Albrecht Reimold, a member of the Executive Board for Production and Logistics at Porsche AG.
Porsche in the first three months of 2020 sold 53,125 cars worldwide, representing a 5% decline from the company’s 55,700-unit result during the comparable period in 2019—a direct result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Still, Porsche’s deliveries of its iconic 911 sports car reached 8,482 units in the first quarter of the year, a 16% increase from the same quarter in 2019. Porsche’s performance in Europe from January to March this year also registered a solid 20% spike—from 14,004 cars in 2019 to 16,787 this year—cushioning the decrease in other markets.