* CEO rules out "major leaps" in future profit
* Porsche spends 1 bln eur at core plant on electric model
* CEO eyes U.S. feedback on diesel engine fix "in next
STUTTGART, Feb 9 Porsche is bracing for smaller
profit gains in future as Volkswagen's sports-car
division steps up spending on models and facilities, Chief
Executive Oliver Blume said.
The maker of the iconic 911 sports car will invest about 1
billion euros ($1.12 billion) as it creates over 1,000 new jobs
at its base in Zuffenhausen to make Porsche's first all-electric
Stuttgart-based Porsche now has "many new products in the
pipeline" to set the course for future growth, Blume told a
gathering of reporters late on Monday.
"Therefore it's clear that we can no longer carry out major
leaps on results," the CEO said.
Still, Porsche, the second-biggest contributor to Volkswagen
(VW) group profit, probably increased underlying earnings last
year as sales of its sports cars and sport-utility vehicles
(SUV) exceeded 200,000 units for the first time, powered by the
new Macan compact SUV.
"Porsche has delivered a great result," Blume said with
regard to the carmaker's 2015 annual earnings, due to be
published on March 11.
A year earlier, the manufacturer's operating profit rose 16
percent to 2.72 billion euros, fuelled by a 20 percent gain in
sales to a record 187,000 cars on demand from the United States
Separately, the CEO said Porsche was hoping to regain the
services of its suspended R&D chief Wolfgang Hatz, who sources
said was placed on leave by VW's supervisory board last year
together with other top engineers in the wake of the emissions
Porsche expects feedback from U.S. regulators "in the next
weeks" on proposals to bring about 13,000 Cayenne SUVs capable
of cheating emissions tests in line with the law, Blume said.
At the Detroit auto show in January, the CEO said Porsche
had submitted proposals which sought to replace catalytic
converters and run software updates for 2013 and 2014 model
years and to run software updates for 2015 and 2016 model years.
($1 = 0.8923 euros)
(Reporting by Ilona Wissenbach; Writing by Andreas Cremer;
Editing by Stephen Coates)